If you are reading this you may already know some of the information that I am about to share with you. My name is Kevin Neglia and I opened Loco Motion New York in January of 2017. Loco Motion New York was and is still something quite different from the traditional fitness scene, and a lot of that has to do with my background. I want to tell you our story, from its beginnings to now, in order to help you better understand our why, and where we are heading.
I was born…
Ok maybe thats too far back. Let us start with my teen years. I was always active but mostly through unstructured play. I would go over to my friend Chris’ house, who lived behind a park. We would grab an assortment of different tennis balls, basketballs, wiffle-balls, footballs, and more and with between 2-10 kids would get SOME type of game going. Clavicles were broken, fights were had, friendships were formed. While other kids were engaged in AAU youth leagues and middle school team sports, I was at the park every day playing, well, anything.
The reason I include this part of the story is because I believe this is the foundation for which a lot of my characteristics were forged. I developed grit, work ethic, creativity (from the lack of sophisticated equipment and tools), and an extremely broad set of skills that would go on to serve me in every future athletic endeavor. I had a “movement practice” long before I even knew what that meant.
As I got older my mother introduced me to a trainer at the local gym. He was a very nice guy who gave me some pretty good advice looking back. He advised I work slow and controlled, focus on the basics, and show up consistently. It was at this time I was about 13 or 14 years old and all I wanted was bigger muscles. Enter my bodybuilding years. During these years I learned all about training “splits” (not the stretch kind), different muscle groups, isolation and compound exercises, and more. I did in fact see development but more so I saw what was possible with hard work. I believe these years helped develop strong muscles, tendons, and ligaments which would allow me to stay injury free throughout the years. I remained a student of this style until high school.
When I was 16 a friend convinced me to try out for basketball, after I failed to make the middle school team years prior. This time it was the JV team. Although reluctant since my past failures were hard to swallow, I did try out and this time I made it. Basketball would become the next stop in my practice. My 9th grade year I didn’t play much. I had poor confidence and was sloppy. I could pull off some fancy tricks on occasion due to my athleticism but I wasn’t a solid player. I see this now as someone who takes a picture in a “one arm handstand” in which they quickly remove their hand and snapshot the .1 seconds before they fell. They usually caption it something like “Life is all about balance”. Nothing infuriates someone who can actually stand on their one hand more than that. For another time perhaps.
So, I got to work. I began working with trainers at a local facility which is now gone called “Catz.” This was designed for sport specific training for kids/athletes with a focus on agility, plyometrics, and strength. I did this 2-3x/week for a year or so, and at the same time found local basketball trainers in Northport and Centerreach to develop my dribbling, understanding of the game, and shooting (among other skills). I also signed up at the local Y to work on my own time, and bought a program online which played through your iPod (legendary). It was about 45-75 minutes of continuous dribbling drills, short rest for free throws, and more. It is called Superhandles (so good) if you want to entertain yourself. This also helped develop my understanding of how systems and a process could lead to serious results. Also how you should ALWAYS rap over your own promotional videos. This became my first obsession, and it got me pretty damn good. The less important part of the story is I ended up playing every minute of my sophomore year, then practicing with varsity, eventually never coming off the floor senior year.
College time. I have a desire for the “hard work” again. I find CrossFit. I start fairly weak and completely inexperienced with olympic weightlifting & gymnastics. Luckily, they don’t take the gymnastics too seriously (slight burn). I once again find the best coaches possible and begin diving in. I go from not knowing what a “Snatch” is to years later hitting a 242lb snatch (only have this video of 236) and 300lb Clean. I also overhead squatted 300lbs. Had I continued I would have hit bigger numbers, but something hit me instead.
I began to realize I was chasing the wrong things. When would it end? When would the numbers stop climbing? What was the risk/reward? Why couldn’t I dance? Why couldn’t I do a press to handstand? I thought I was so strong, what is up?!
I found Ido Portal sometime in 2014, and thought nothing of it. I had no idea what I was watching. I revisited his Youtube videos in 2016 and spent all of my money to fly to Thailand to study with him. I was introduced to the concept of “spinal terminology” and “organic strength”. I learned more about hand-balancing and the gymnastics rings. We worked on tactical/fighting and dance techniques. We did some leg strength which exposed my legs tremendously. I squatted 380lbs at the time, and 330lbs for repetitions, and could barely complete the intermediate version of the exercise he provided…with just my own bodyweight. I was introduced to more somatic practices and breathing techniques. There was so much to explore my head hardly knew where to start. I knew everything I had done prior had value but now Pandora’s box was open. At the end of the internship he asked us all kindly, but very seriously “What will you do now with this information, when you go back home?” I immediately knew, and knew that I wanted to evolve as a teacher and a practitioner. That was one of three things he said during that trip I will never forget.
I came back completely changed, and decided I no longer wanted to compete, but continue to study with him and more importantly teach others. I was mentally divorced from the CrossFit gym I was teaching at and eventually a small group of us ended up in my garage training “movement”, which can hardly be defined. I continued my online coaching with Ido and then, at the end of 2017, leased a 1000 sq. ft. studio which would become our first home. With about 10 students and an unorthodox style of training, Loco Motion New York was born.
In the beginning of 2019, thanks to the growth of our community and the need for more space, we moved into a larger and more complete 2300 sq. ft. space complete with monkey bars, gymnastics rings, open floor and wall space, and more. We added teachers who have been studying with us since the beginning, and who are dedicated to their craft and the furthering of others. They have added their own unique experiences and have taught me a lot as well. For the first time I am part of a team willing to shed their skin as they go. It is in this space that we will continue to grow, develop new ideas, and evolve as people and a practice.
P.S. – I know my old videos are ridiculous. In the best way.