Sweat Lab was founded by Olga Dolynina, a formerly trained dancer. She discovered movement outside of dance when she experienced a personal injury, and fell in love with yoga and started teaching group classes. This gave her the opportunity to feel alive and connected to her body again. Read more to learn more about how Olga is motivating her community and changing lives daily.
Recess: As a formerly trained dancer, I’m sure that you feel a lot of pressure and competition; how has that experience helped you motivate your clients and other women?
Olga: The dance world is tough. It is tough physically, mentally, and emotionally. It is such a beautiful form of art that teaches grace, mind-body connection as well as discipline, but it is cutthroat and puts a lot of pressure on a person. I’ve struggled with body image and self-worth a lot during my dance years. It took time and patience with myself to get to the point of loving and appreciating my body. It took time to reconnect with it in a healthy way. I now teach fitness and yoga from a place of self-love with a dose of discipline. I motivate women to move to feel good. I help them rediscover their bodies through movement and learn to appreciate and celebrate their strength. I encourage them to chase the feeling – not the look. Move and feel good, the looks will come. Be patient yet consistent, show up and do your best, celebrate every milestone, and then magic happens.
“I’ve struggled with body image and self-worth a lot
during my dance years. It took time and patience
with myself to get to the point of
loving and appreciating my body.” – Olga
Recess: I love how you say “connecting with yourself through movement” in your bio. This can be a new discovery for many, how has it changed your life?
Olga: I step onto my mat to be with myself. It is my self-time. It is my time to get out of my mind and get into my body. Everyone needs it and everyone deserves it. Even 30 minutes of movements (strength, dance, cardio, Pilates, yoga, etc) will help you shift from thinking, to feeling and connect to your body on a deeper level. Move, breath, sweat, feel better and feel free. Next time you move, notice how much happier and calmer you feel afterward. Find a form of movement you enjoy and stick with it. It will change your day, your week, and with consistency, your life for the better.
Recess: You shared that you discovered yoga through a personal injury. How did you recover from that, mentally and physically?
Olga: Healing an injury takes time and patience. It’s your body’s way of saying “you pushed too hard or you did too much”. It makes you slow down and really pays attention to your body. I had to be patient with myself. I had to adjust my routine and my expectations. I had to be ok with what my body could and could not do. Yoga teaches all of that: letting go of the ego, being in the present moment, and learning to listen to your body. The practice of yoga allowed me to still move my body in a gentle but challenging way while healing it and trained my mind to let go. Yoga practice helps to heal and prevent injuries. Yoga is your ticket to longevity.
“Chase the feeling, not the looks.”
Recess: What’s your go-to tip for clients?
Olga: When it comes to fitness, start where you are. No need to wait for the right time as there is never a right time. Go at your own pace. Set attainable goals. Unrealistic goals will only set you back, get you frustrated and push you to quit. Be patient. Celebrate every milestone, big or small, you got to celebrate yourself. Chase the feeling, not the looks. Remind yourself how awesome and accomplished you feel after each sweaty session, chase that feeling. Ask for help: get a trainer or a community that will keep you accountable and helps you on your journey every step of the way. Always remember your why (why you started in the first place).