We had the good fortune of connecting with Justin Emmanuel Flores and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Justin Emmanuel, is there a quote or affirmation that’s meaningful to you?
“A man’s work is nothing but this slow trek to rediscover, through the detours of art, those two or three great and simple images in whose presence his heart first opened. ” –Albert Camus–

This quote is contained in all my email correspondence. I think is sums up living very well. I always tell patients that healing is a journey. Having recovered from multiple surgeries during my dance career I can attest to that. The same is true for training dancers. It is an incredibly long game. One needs patience and perseverance.

Theres a feeling you get when you see clearly. When you are not clouded by pain or fear. Sometimes it’s an image, sometimes it’s a song, sometimes you accomplish something you have never been able to accomplish before. It is here where your heart opens and you see the world again with a beginner’s mind. I look to lots of things for this experience but I often lean towards the arts. They are my first love, “a lie that makes us realize the truth (Picaso).”

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
My current practice 1 part therapy (acupuncture, bodywork and neuromuscular reeducation), and 1 part education (I train dancers at the San Diego Civic Youth Ballet). I am the company therapist for City Ballet of San Diego, Golden State Ballet, and the Rosin Box Project. I also coach dancers for the Youth America Grand Prix, and I work with the San Diego County Office of Education to promote arts in public schools.

It took time to get where I am today. It’s a journey that started when I was 14 or 15 and I took my first dance class. It continued for 25 years while I performed professionally in San Francisco and New York, and it dovetailed with acupuncture and healing arts towards the end of my performing career.

I have been studying movement and music for almost 34 years now. I’ve been studying healing for about 12 years now. It has been a long journey to proficiency in both practices. They beauty of these forms is that you are always a student. You never learn it completely. There is always something to be revealed. That’s why I chose them.

From a business perspective, I focused on a specialized market, movement therapy and movement training. Professional dancers and athletes want to work with individuals that know what it’s like to compete at the highest levels and won’t belittle their work by dismissing it as a hobby that can be replaced with some other activity. This goes double for aspiring dancers and athletes. My business is networking and word of mouth. I teach a lot of people and I fix a lot of people. My patients/clients are from the professional dance world, MLB, Team USA Ice Skating, and so on. But I treat anyone who wants to move better in their body. You don’t need to be a professional to come see me.

Putting all this together was certainly not easy. As I stated before you need patience and perseverance, and sometimes you have to fight. That is the only way I was able to overcome the obstacles. Chef Jose Andrés of World Central Kitchen wore a shirt that said “Fight like Ukrainians”. I’m adopting that, you can never give up, and you must always try.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I would definitely take them to the Safari Park in Valley Center. What an amazing place! I would take them to eat at Nine Ten Restaurant in La Jolla where Chef Jason Knibb makes some of the most amazing creations. Hang out at any of the beaches in the county because they are all beautiful. Visit the farmer’s market in Little Italy and catch a show at Casbah downtown. And I think some safe hopping to your choice of micro breweries is in order.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Well I definitely want to give a shout out to my mother and father for always believing in my abilities and steering me in the right direction. Also my mentor in college, now Dean of The College of Fine Arts at The University of Oklahoma, Mary Margaret Holt. She was a big influence. My dear friend in New York the late Miriam Verne (Epstein) who renewed my curiosity and lived a life like no one I have ever met. Lastly, my wife and my 2 sons that show me daily what true love really is.

Website: Restorebodynow.com

Image Credits
Rj Muna Ira Bauer-Spector