Dance was a first love for Tracee Kafer, who started at the innocent age of 3. Many moons later, with over 28 years of training and experience in multiple genres and over a decade of teaching, performing, and choreographing, she has now turned passionately to improvisational movement to feel truly untethered from genre, style, convention, and apparatus. She believes that if you can move, you can dance, and in honoring that process as a life practice, you can live in a world of personal evolution, community, and freedom.
Tracee created Finding Your Freestyle® (FYF) in 2011, a movement and lifestyle enterprise that encourages freedom in movement, expression, creativity and community. Tracee facilitates workshops and intensives in the FYF method internationally, and has fostered a global community of “freestylers” who regularly utilize the modalities created by FYF in their own movement, creative endeavors, and life practices. In the last 4 years, Tracee has hosted immersive movement retreats in New York, Sedona, San Diego, and Costa Rica.
Tracee also founded and co-directs the pole dance improvisational-based company Pole Speak (with co-director Jess Linick), which emerged out of techniques from FYF combined with the unending quest to master the artistic language of pole dancing.
A true inspiration addict, with an insatiable appetite for both the cerebral and esoteric, Tracee is also a tarot and crystal healing enthusiast, Reiki practitioner, certified Floor Flow® instructor, practicing meditator, bibliophile, and digital nerd.
Additionally, with a degree in Advertising, Tracee also has a career in creative design and marketing and is currently the Creative Director for the world-renowned pole and aerial dance studio, Body & Pole.
Jess Linick, PhD, SEP, is a clinical psychologist, Somatic Experiencing Practitioner®, and lifelong dancer. Since beginning dance classes at the age of 5, Jess has immersed herself a variety of styles (e.g., ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop, salsa, modern, contemporary), all the while aware of the basic undercurrent in them all – the ability of the body to express through movement what words cannot. Since 2011, Jess has taken her love of movement to the pole, and after taking her first FYF class in 2012, immediately felt at home, relishing in the opportunity to move as she wanted to move, free from the binds of traditional dance classes. To Jess, freestyle movement is more than just “dancing”– it is a way of being in the world, of interacting with space and time; a way of living. Unencumbered, open, and vulnerable, we are invited to harness intuition, follow our inner compass, and express ourselves in ways that ring true for us most clearly.
In 2014, Jess and Tracee co-created Pole Speak, an improvisational-based pole dance company, and in 2017, she joined the Finding Your Freestyle team. Jess brings her training as a clinical psychologist directly into this work, combining her knowledge of mind-body integration with the FYF movement practices. Sessions utilize meditation, breathwork, and other somatic practices to assist participants in fostering a better connection with their bodies, unlocking any “stuck” patterns, and moving through anything that may be holding them back. With a long-time meditation and mindfulness practice, Jess is also a Reiki practitioner, registered yoga teacher, and sound practitioner.
Jess currently resides in New York City, where she specializes in body-oriented psychotherapy, meditation, and mindfulness practices. She received her PhD from Columbia University, and currently focuses on the provision of trauma-informed psychotherapy within the juvenile justice system.