Natalia Petrzela defines herself by her passionate and committed teaching. A Premiere Leader of IntenSati, a powerful practice combining spoken affirmations with high-energy movements derived from martial arts, yoga, dance, and aerobics, Natalia inspires diverse communities through physical movement at Equinox in New York City, at B East Fitness in the Hamptons, and in private and community classes all over the East Coast.
As a child, Natalia was far more comfortable conjugating verbs and writing papers than playing sports or dancing, and shied away from all athletic activity until her late teens. Her life changed when she discovered group fitness, however, and realized that devoting the same intensity and enthusiasm to the gym as to the classroom brought her infinitely more energy and success in all areas of life.
For years, Natalia joked, “in another life, I’d be a fitness instructor,” and when she found IntenSati in 2005, she realized that “joke” was just an excuse for deferring her dreams. The intenSati affirmation “How you do anything is how you do everything” crystallizes Natalia’s approach to life, and she seeks to empower all her students to achieve excellence, from her packed fitness classes to the college seminars of the New School University, where she is Assistant Professor of Education Studies and History.
Natalia is currently bringing together her passions for fitness and education with two new projects: Healthclass2.0, an afterschool curriculum that redefines fitness and food education to develop children’s reflective and decision-making capabilities; and a scholarly history of the pursuit of happiness and self-improvement in the United States.
Natalia’s academic work has been supported by the Spencer and Whiting Foundations, and she holds a B.A. from Columbia College and an M.A. and Ph.D. from Stanford University. Her intenSati classes have been recognized by domestic and global media outlets and brands including Univision, the U.K. Guardian, and Lululemon Athletica.