A biographical “get-into-it” about the life of Shaun T
Said and believed by Darren Natoni
From the moment we arrive in this universe and part our eyelids for the very first time, we awaken to a potent new reality. If not so overcome by the the actuality of existing, perhaps we’d ask ourselves, what do I want to do in this life?
Although our mind does not yet comprehend, our soul wonders: Who will I be? What will I do? Will I fulfill my potential?
We all enter this world with a blank slate, our crisp white page inscribed by the same bold lettering celebrating our arrival:
I AM BORN.
The words that follow…well, those are a story of your creating.
For one boy, his future would not be decided by another. This young life was to grow to be Shaun T, and as anyone who knows this inspiring human being will attest, Shaun T is the author of his own reality.
On May 2, 1978, the universe delivered an aware Shaun Thompson to our world, charged with purpose and motivation. While some people are unsure how to pen the story of their life, Shaun always knew that he wanted to write a best seller.
“Every person has a unique gift or talent that they are meant to share with the world. That is why you are on this planet…because you have something to offer that makes everyone better. Let your light shine today and everyday. Because without your light, the world would be dark.”
A New Jersey native, Shaun faced a fortunate challenge before entering college—accept an athletic scholarship for track and field or choose an academic scholarship offered to him at a different university. Shaun’s mother entrusted the decision to her son, always conscious of his inherent ability to write each chapter of his life by his own accord.
Shaun felt strongly that education should shape his collegiate endeavors and he knew that he had the power to enter the athletic realm should he so choose—life, after all, is by his design. Shaun accepted the academic scholarship, ironically delivering him to the campus that would give birth to “Shaun T.”
Shaun arrived at Rowan University with an amazing new weapon—an unlimited cafeteria food card (dangerously, also eligible at a local pizza joint). With great power comes great responsibility, and Shaun excelled at his duty to keep himself well fed! Eat like it’s a sport though and your body is bound to changeâ€¦
“You cant hide behind change.”
One day, Shaun found himself in front of the mirror and what he saw peering back at him was something completely unfamiliar to him: for the first time in his life, Shaun recognized disappointment, a shocking departure from the pride and self control to which he was accustom.
This very day, Shaun turned the page and wrote his first sentence in a new chapter of life, one that the world would come to know as “Shaun T.”
In it to Win it
Shaun began working out. That’s right, the Shaun T you know and love officially began training to become the Shaun T you respect and admire.
Each day, Shaun hit the gym devout in his resolution to create a better him. Enjoying his training, he decided to change his major to sports science, inching his way ever closer to the ST moniker that sits atop your favorite trainer list.
As part of his new curriculum, Shaun ventured into the world of group exercise instruction at the campus fitness center. After his first class, Shaun realized he had found his calling. For the first time in his life, Shaun LIVED!
Up to this point, Shaun existed with purpose, but now he LIVED in those eights! He discovered his natural affinity for teaching and unleashed an indisputable momentum inside of him set on helping others improve their life experience through motivaSHAUN, his own breed of fitness, dance, and linguistic power.
“When I speak, it comes directly from the heart…I feel like I am called to not only train your body, but to train your soul. I hope that I am able to speak to your soul in some way that forever impacts the course of your life.”
Shaun embraced the rest of his time at Rowan University, earning a BS in health and exercise science with a minor in theater and dance. Shaun again returned to Rowan in 2013 as a Distinguished Alumni honoree, challenging the graduating class to inspire the world by LIVING to their potential.
LA LA Land
After college, Shaun followed his dreams to Los Angeles, California, where he danced in theater and television, sharing the screen and stage with some of the most esteemed artists of our time.
His theater credits include the original cast of the musical The Ten Commandments, Pippin, and Applause. Shaun’s television credits span HBO’s Six Feet Under, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Conan, Dr. Oz, The Tyra Banks Show, The Wendy Williams Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, The Talk, The Steve Harvey Show, Rachel Ray Show, BBC America, and the film Beauty Shop, starring Queen Latifah. Shaun has danced with artists such as Mariah Carey, Aaron and Nick Carter, Elephant Man, and many more, while also working alongside companies such as Nike, Reebok, Powerade, Radio Shack, the Los Angeles Lakers, Marc Jacobs, and Boost athletic shoes.
“When I’m dancing, I’m LIVING in those eights!”
Shaun’s choreography career began the day he started dancing, and his credits speak volumes of his ability: choreography for the NCAA Final 4 halftime show, Aaron and Nick Carter’s “Twister Moves” tour (Wal-Mart), and the Garden State Dance Festival, to name a few. Shaun worked with Tony Gonzalez in choreographing the movie, Bring It On: All or Nothing, also collaborating on Kathy Smith’s Project: YOU, where he incorporated his love of dance and his studies of fitness in the creation of the workouts. Shaun has also choreographed for the Soulja Boy You Tube convention, Nike Industrials, music videos, and an array of corporate events.
Shaun’s sessions in LA were some of the hottest, most highly demanded dance classes in the country. People lined up around the block—and early—simply to immerse themselves in the unforgettable energy that Shaun brings to his choreography.
One of these attendees was a striking woman by the name of Lara Ross, Vice President of Development for Beachbody. Lara had an offer for Shaun: come to Beachbody headquarters and show Carl Daikeler and the gang what he could do. And trust and believe, that’s exactly what Shaun did!
With the help of friend and fellow dancer Tania “The Machine” Baron, Shaun and his crew served up an invigorating mashup of fitness and dance. Beachbody immediately recognized what they had on their hands and in February 2007, Shaun T unleashed Hip Hop Abs®.
Hip Hop Abs® quickly became America’s number one selling fitness program on TV, proving its worth as the most fun and effective way to target your abs, while never having to do a single crunch or sit-up. Due to popular demand, Shaun followed up with an all-new Hip Hop Abs® Dance Party series of workouts.
Shaun T isn’t one to rest on his laurels, and building on the success of Hip Hop Abs® Shaun created a brand new fitness program, Rockin’ Body®, a total-body, high-energy dance workout that can burn up to 1,000 calories in a single hour.
As you’ll recall, Shaun isn’t just a dancerâ€”he’s an athlete at heart. With years of experience competing in track and field at the collegiate level, Shaun knows the rigors of extreme training and how to get real, performance-driven results.
So, when Beachbody approached Shaun about creating the most intense, effective 60-day extreme fitness program in existence, Shaun did what he does best—create! Shaun dove into his repertoire of training experience and expertise and previewed his “insane” concept to Beachbody.
In July 2009, Beachbody introduced INSANITY, Shaun T’s new fitness program based on MAX INTERVAL TRAINING. INSANITY combines plyometric drills on top of intervals of strength and power, earning you the most insane results possible in the shortest time by using only your body for resistance. INSANITY has gone on to become the number one fitness infomercial in the country—and rightfully so, as its reach continues to change lives across the world.
Clamoring for a follow-up to the inspiring success of INSANITY, Beachbody again tapped Shaun to DIG even DEEPER into his athletic toolbox and in 2011, Shaun released INSANITY: The ASYLUM Vol. 1, an elite 30-day training system targeted at refining your athletic performance and taking your fitness to the next level.
ASYLUM quickly skyrocketed as a favorite among fitness fans and athletes alike, even earning a place in the training regimens of the following professional athletes:
- Apolo Ohno, 8-time Winter Olympic Medal Winner and 7-time World Cup Champion
- Hope Solo, Goalkeeper, U.S. Women’s National Team
- Evan Valiere, Professional Surfer
Hot on the heels of ASYLUM Vol. 1′s success, Shaun unveiled the highly anticipated INSANITY: The ASYLUM Vol. 2 in 2012, creating another tidal wave of inspiring physical and mental transformations throughout the athletic and home fitness communities.
In October 2012, Shaun Thompson became Shaun Blokker, marrying his best friend at an exquisite New York City ceremony. Of all the historic points of significance along Shaun’s path, his marriage to the love of his life is his most precious achievement. Scott is the reason for his every season and the world of tomorrow is a more inspiring place for the simple beauty which they share in their unity today.
In the spring of 2013, Beachbody unveiled Focus T25, the forthcoming fitness program from Shaun T designed to get you an hour’s worth of results in just 25 minutes. FOCUS and GO for 25 minutes, five days a week, and you’ll get 100% results. T25 is the biggest breakthrough in fitness since INSANITY and it’s coming to a life near youâ€¦SOON!
2013 also brought with it the launch of the all new shauntfitness.com and the official Shaun T Store. Shaun’s online vision is a noble one: Motivate YOU to take action in your life to become the very best version of YOU. Shaun realizes that inspiration doesn’t always come naturally, so his focus is honed in on how to best help you uncover your potential and FIND YOUR LIFE!
“I always talk about LIVING the best life possible. I know that isn’t always easy. We ALL have struggles in our life that make living to the fullest difficult. I want to help you get through those struggles . I want to be more than just a fitness trainer to you, I want to be your life coach. I want to reach out and grab your heart and inspire your soul.”
Today, Shaun continues to do what he does best—LIVING—and he applies one principle to every facet of his life: LIVE each moment in the moment and find your true self in your potential to be YOU. By living life to the best of your ability, you honor the world around you and inspire everyone to be conscious and alive of what is possible through simply being YOU.