Dayana Pereira and Colin Kirts Are High On Themselves


Justin sits down with Dayana and Colin to discuss ice baths, heightened awareness, and the breathing exercise that’s better than coffee.

Dayana Pereira and Colin Kirts are the practitioners behind KORU Real Wellness, a training center and treatment facility offering a revolutionary movement-based model for personal growth and development. Connect with KORU, Dayana, and Colin on Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook at @korurealwellness and at www.wearekoru.com.

Welcome to the eighth episode of Audition Secrets!

The Feldenkrais Method
Dayana and Colin are practitioners of the Feldenkrais Method of Somatic Education — which combines movement and attention to engage the activity of your brain and create change. One might use this method to diminish pain or improve posture, but the benefits seem endless as it seeks to take advantage of the brain’s ability to keep growing.

Origin stories
Colin discovered the Feldenkrais Method in 2007 while living in New York. Classmates turned him onto the sessions, and after his first exposure to it, the methodology immediately felt profound. Colin points out that the focus of the work is the nervous system and developing positive physiological habits.

Dayana came across the method in acting school in 1995 in Uruguay. She was studying in a program that required her to take at least ten movement classes, and of all of them, Feldenkrais most fundamentally transformed things for her. She characterizes the method as a way to identify your patterns as they relate to your movements — to see what is giving you pain, and to then build new patterns that seek pleasure and joy.

Hustle and flow
Justin points out that a heightened sense of awareness and breath are intertwined. Colin knows that performers want to be able to get on stage and relax. Like with anything, the work is a practice. The more you do it, the more you pay attention, the more likely you are to be able to get into a flow. That “flow state” is what we’re all seeking in our artistry — and in our lives.

Take a deep breath
Dayana believes that breath, our life force, is the gateway to that flow. With deep, focused breathing, you can increase your awareness. Ask yourself: am I breathing deeply or shallowly? Most of us breathe 16-17 times a minute (short, shallow breaths) while the ideal amount is 6-7 deep breaths through the nose, if possible. Dayana shares an easy-to-do activity known as box breathing which puts a focus on the pauses between our breaths.

Nose knows
Slow, deep nasal breathing is better for you than breathing through your mouth because it engenders a parasympathetic state (to relax you). Sympathetic states (fight or flight responses) come from mouth breathing as that lives in the chest. Even more, the nose has nitrous oxide receptors that your mouth does not, allowing for better oxygenation and a relaxation of blood vessels.

The cold never bothered me anyway
XPT (Extreme Performance Training) is a performance lifestyle rooted in cutting-edge fitness and the most powerful human trait: the ability to adapt. Justin, Dayana, and Colin have all taken their fare share of sauna trips and ice baths, sitting down in a 100-gallon tub of freezing water for the latter to experience a shock to the system. It’s a lesson in letting go and not letting your environment control you — and about adapting to a level of stress so your homeostasis (baseline) is a little bit more tolerant to the extremes of life on earth. After all, how happy and content can one really be without embracing the elements as they exist and unpredictably occur in nature?


Don’t try this at home
No one here is pretending to be a doctor, but Colin and Dayana advise against any individual temperature-based exposure treatment. Cold showers, however, are something that Colin doesn’t mind. He and Dayana also find super-ventilation (intentional hyperventilation, sometimes called CO2 scrubbing) to be incredible functional (and better than coffee). Your body will get you hooked into proper breathing because the sensations feel so good.

Zooming out of yourself
The work that needs to happen to survive an ice bath and the audition process is mindset work. It requites working through the negative self talk, or reversing it altogether. Dayana says that when you talk to yourself in the third person (“You can do this, Dayana!”), your inner self listens in a new way. We respond to somebody from the outside telling us what we can do, and we don’t do it enough to ourselves. Give your mind a task to focus on, and remember that practice makes perfect. Your nervous system is your clay to mold. It is your program, the skeleton being your hardware and then soft tissue your software. Take care of your program!

The limit does not exist
Colin believes everything either increases possibility or increases limitation. The more we can ask ourselves which is which, the more present we will be. The work Dayana and Colin practice daily is about getting over yourself, out of your head, and connecting better. They want you to stop playing the comparison game and remember that your true self is your most powerful tool — and it’s way more interesting than an artificial self.

The Feldenkrais Method, XPT, and deep breath take advantage of ancient techniques. Colin sees them as tools that can catalyze a person’s ability to find the freedom in loving themselves. And who doesn’t want that?

People, Places & Things mentioned in this episode:
Feldenkrais Method
KORU Real Wellness on YouTube
Wim Hof
Movement Matters Podcast

Follow Justin at @justinguarini on all social media!

Justin Guarini