Jess Key is originally from Milan, and teaches Ragga Dancehall for us at Gymbox. "Have fun, enjoy yourself, and just let that stress go away!"
Hi Jess! What does a usual day-in-the-life look like for you?
My usual day starts with training in the gym. I always need it to constantly improve myself physically, then dance classes of course which I can't live without! I also make sure I eat well, and not skip meals. Nutrition is so important.
You're originally from Milan, what made you move to London?
I was grew up in Milan, but my dad is from the Ivory Coast and my mum is Italian. I decided to move to London as there are more opportunities in my sector. So here I am!
You teach Ragga Dancehall for us, can you describe the class for those who might not know about it?
Ragga Dancehall is based on African/Jamaican dance. These types of dances are formed by different basic steps, and they can have a variation too. These steps have been inspired by social issues, hard times or peaceful and good periods. Dancehall is more a culture than just a dance. Come try it!
How can incorporating a dance class into one’s training schedule be beneficial?
It's about fun, we want that people enjoy themselves! Let go of the stress and forget about your problems. Just relax, break a sweat, and have fun. It's also important to interact with each other and share good feelings.
Do you live to dance?
Yes, of course! I always used to say that dance is my first love. Nothing else has helped me like dance during my worst periods – it's magical. I consider it like a form of meditation, because I go into another dimension when I dance – I switch off my mind. I like hip hop music, but also African music, soul, reggae and R&B.
You started dance at 11, what made you get into it?
I started to study dance at 11, but I've always been dancing at home since I was very little – I used to record my favourite tracks and create choreographies to them. So dancing is in the blood.
You used to work in Milan putting on hip hop events, tell us about that
I used to dance in music videos and at some of the most important hip hop nights – we also used to collaborate with international brands and artists, like Lloyd Banks, Lil' John, Omarion and EVE. It was great fun!
You had a knee operation, how did you cope with the recovery?
I've been operated at the meniscus, so I had to stop dancing for six months – it's was an awful time because as you might have guessed I can't live without dancing.
Do you have any advice for people who are recovering from serious injuries?
That's why I'm so involved in gym as well, one because in London I knew this my new passion and also because it's so important to make our body stronger. As a dancer I need to have a good workout – it's so important for me. The most important thing is to never give up, and always believe in yourself.
More about our classes right here.