Back Talk with Kathryn Harden, Dancer & Studio Founder

Oregon Dance Teacher of the Year (2019 award winner)

I'm the owner and founder of Steps PDX dance studio. Steps PDX is a Dance studio that creates a safe space for all dancers. 

No One Size Fits All

We're an all-ages dance studio and offer all movement styles, including ballet, jazz, contemporary, modern, hip hop, and conditioning classes. I wanted to create a hub where all types of forms could come together, and you could learn these different genres of movement and explore different styles. 

Personal Journey

I started ballet when I was three years old and got into it because of my older sister. She’s eight years older than me, and she is my idol. I fell in love with ballet the more I performed. After graduating high school, I was offered a position at Pacific Northwest Ballet where I continued training and dancing with the company. I then went on to Ballet Idaho with their company.

Higher Education & Study in Kinesiology

I took a break from professional dancing to attend Towson University for dance, and studied exercise science with a focus in kinesiology. I wanted to learn more about the body, the mechanics of how the body moves, and that has helped me in the field of dance. After graduation, I moved to New York City where I continued dancing with a company called XAOC Contemporary Ballet. I was also teaching kids dance in different school settings. 

Dance is such a big part of my life; such a big part of my identity.

Maintaining Your Posture Requires Daily Reinforcement

Posture is very important. Dance has helped me strengthen my posture. Since I stopped dancing professionally, it's not the central part of my daily routine, and as a result, my posture is not as strong. In fact, I started physical therapy when I came down with tendonitis and bursitis in both shoulders as my posture had declined when I stepped back from dancing everyday.

Posture is very important. It affects everything you do in your daily life, as basic as picking something up.

Maintaining your posture is very important. Everyone in life has to deal with posture. The three areas that have helped me, include physical therapy, kinesiology taping, and acupuncture.

Kinflyte Provides Posture Support & Comfort

I appreciate what Kinflyte is doing, from the materials used to the pressure points being addressed to support posture. Because that’s an area that has been neglected in clothes.

Being an athlete, pretty much my whole life, I’m constantly in scrubs or activewear. A lot of the athletic apparel can be quite restricting at times, particularly for women. We have to wear sports bras, leggings, and a lot of tight compression clothing, which doesn't always feel great to move in.

Clothing is important for mobility and to feel supported. I'm excited about Kinflyte and how it can help women.

The Experience of Wearing and Moving in Kinflyte Essentials

It feels like I’m wearing kinesiology tape in a way where it’s very held in my shoulders, which is awesome.

Specifically in the shoulders, it reminds of kinesio tape holding my shoulders down and back. I feel like I’m lifted and supported, not just in my back and shoulders, but also in the front.

It feels really good and is form-fitting to every part of my body. I have a hard time finding clothes, so this is very nice. The fabric is super soft and smooth, and feels like second skin.

I can dance in this every day.

Final Word: Freedom to be an Individual
As women I feel like there is this stigma of being told what we should or shouldn’t do, how we should or shouldn’t act, and what we should or shouldn’t wear. It’s really important for people to have options to really express who they are as an individual.

Interviewed by Vivian Lee