Guerrera was founded as a project of N-Flux in 2016. The idea behind Guerrera's creation was (and remains) simple: Women are powerful. Guerrera seeks to provide a space for women to express both their intellectual and physical power. Historically, women have been excluded from aggressive athletic pursuits, including martial arts, and channeled into low contact sports instead. This plays on heterosexist ideology that encourages women to accept relative physical weakness as a fundamental component of femininity. Fuck that. At its core, Guerrera is about women asserting ourselves in spaces traditionally controlled by men. Guerrera is about expressing ourselves physically in meaningful ways. Guerrera is about fighting back against sexism, objectification, and gender-based violence. Guerrera is about women celebrating women in community.
About the Body Positive Movement
The Body Positive Movement (BPM) was developed with support from The Body and Media Lab at Northwestern University. Colleen worked with Renee Engeln PhD, a brilliant professor and researcher who focuses on women's body image. Renee and Colleen worked together on a number of studies analyzing how aesthetically-focused language impacted fitness students psychologically. After finding strong evidence to suggest body positivity improves both physical and psychological outcomes in a fitness setting, the Body Positive Movement was constructed to help fitness facilities bring the potential improvements illustrated by the studies to life.
About the instructor
Colleen Daly is a Fit To Fight certified instructor and level 4 green belt in Defensive Options. She also practices Krav Maga, Muay Thai, Boxing, Kickboxing, and Jiu Jitsu. She competes regularly in Jiu Jitsu tournaments and is training for her first MMA tournament. Colleen is passionate about cultivating communities of strong women and fighting back against objectification. She conducted research with Renee Engeln in the Body and Media Lab at Northwestern University on how body disparaging language affects the psychological well-being of fitness participants. As such, she is dedicated to integrating functional and positive language into her practice. Colleen is a die-hard Tar Heel and can be found picking fights with Duke fans across DC.
We get lots of questions about the symbolism behind Guerrera's branding, so here goes.
1. Why the name "Guerrera?"
Guerrera's deepest roots formed while Colleen lived abroad in Sevilla, Spain. "Guerrera" is the female version of the spanish word for warrior. Unfortunately "Guerrero," "Guerrera's" male equivalent, is considered the standard for the word. Most phones autocorrect "Guerrera" to "Guerrero," for example. As we work to create space for female aggression, we too, look to create a world in which the first image you think of when you hear the word "warrior" is a woman.
2. Why a monkey?
It's not a monkey. It's a bonobo.
Bonobos are a type of Ape found in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They live in matriarchal societies. While the female bonobos recognize that they are not as strong as their male counterparts, they bond together to maintain order and protect each other.
A note on identity, intersectionality, and privilege.
Feminism isn’t really feminism unless it’s intersectional. As a community, we fight for equality and equity of those who have been marginalized and oppressed. We understand that representation is an essential part of that process and encourage feedback on how to
Gender and Sexual Orientation
Strong women come in many forms. non-binary, Cis, Or Trans. Again, feminism isn’t feminism unless it’s intersectional. Please let us know if/how we can better incorporate the perspectives of folks with varying gender identities and sexual orientations.
Body Privilege and Ableism
We are a body positive organization. Period. We believe firmly that strength comes in many forms. We run trainings specifically targeted to fitness professionals and enthusiasts to incorporate body positivity into their practice.
Fitness should be accessible to everyone. We are dedicated to countering ableism and ensuring that all levels of ability can partake in our programming. If you would like to participate and have specific needs to consider, please contact us and we will do everything we can to ensure you are fully involved in our trainings.