Celebrating Black History Month With Yoga

Happy Black History Month!! Honestly, Black History Month gets celebrated all year long (at least as far as I’M concerned) because the contributions of black people to American history are endless. Nevertheless, I do like taking the time out to really acknowledge and appreciate those contributions. 

Historically, black/African people are no strangers to the practice of yoga, with Kemetic yoga‘s roots in Kemet (Ancient Egypt). However, the landscape of mainstream modern yoga has shown a picture that’s left a lot of potential black yogis thinking the practice isn’t for them. Fortunately, things are starting to change and more and more yogis of color, particularly black yogis, are getting into the practice and changing theirs and others lives.  Scroll down to view the documentary The Uncommon Yogi: A History of Blacks and Yoga.

In that spirit, here’s a round-up of some of STL’s local black yogis teaching around the city. Whether you want to find a class taught by someone who looks like you, or you’re just down to support local black business, you’ve got some good options to choose from.  Representation is important, as our friends at The Collective STL have shared.

This month, The Collective STL is helping to fit yoga into your schedule while also learning more about the contributions African Americans are making to this country.  They have created the 28 day Black Sun Salutation Challenge over on Instagram to honor current African American leaders.  Each day they are revealing one person with a short paragraph of their contribution; the goal is for you, as the yoga practitioner, to be intrigued to learn more about that person.  Pop over to Instagram and follow #28blacksunsalchallenge to participate.  The Collective STL also hosts monthly events in St. Louis.

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Candace Glass is owner of Southtown Yoga you can catch her on the schedule there.  Bonus points if you have a tiny human – she also runs Elephant Power: Mindfulness for Kids!

DJNicoMarie has Trap Yoga (2nd & 4th Saturdays) at URB ARTS at 9:45 am

DonnaRae Jones teaches regular FREE Slow Flow classes at your local St. Louis County Library (Thornhill and Lewis & Clark branches).  

Jamie Austin (pictured below) is owner of Mindful Movements in Old North St. Louis where she hosts community classes and workshops. Jamie also teaches a lunchtime class at Covo co-working space downtown on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  

Jamie at 4 Hands

Katie Redmond is the founder of Uwazo Yogauwazo is Swahili for meditation, reflection, clarity.  Check out her site for information on upcoming classes, or to book a one-on-one yoga session.

Maury Jackson teaches at Gateway Flex on Sunday mornings and afternoons – donation-based, so pay what you can.

Malissa McLaurin (pictured below) offers Buti Yoga Mondays, 6:30pm at Gateway Flex. An additional Thursday evening classs starts up 2/15/2018.

Malissa at Gateway to Wellbeing

Naa-Dodua Ankra leads a super chill Yinstorative Jam at PuraVegan Yoga on Wednesdays at 6:15pm.

Simiya Sudduth offers a back to basics class at Urban Breath Yoga in Maplewood on Saturdays at 10am, and a healthy serving of yoga for lunch at the Urban Breath Yoga in the Grove Saturdays at noon.

Sol Asar leads a weekly Kemetic Yoga class at PuraVegan on Mondays at noon.  Check out this unique class, based on ancient Kemetic practices.

Stacy Furr hosts a variety of yoga classes (including philosophy workshops) over at Blue Sky Yoga.

Last but not least, you can find me! Brittany L Hill , serving up the vibes and the jams every Mondays and Thursdays at 6:30 pm for Yoga & Chill above FLOAT in Midtown.  Plus, make sure you are following Back Trap Yoga for some special pop-up yoga events.  

Brittany at Six Mile

The Uncommon Yogi: A History of Blacks and Yoga

Originally written 2017 by Brittany Hill, Outreach Director for Yoga Buzz – updated 2018. Did we miss a yoga teacher of color in the St. Louis area?  Comment below with class info, location, cost, etc.!

Comments

  1. There is also Dr. Gladys Smith that teaches yoga at StL Yoga, 4 S. Central, Clayton, Mo. 63105. Classes are every Saturday at 9a and every Sunday at 4p.

    Thanks for the Yoga Buzz events and your efforts to encourage!!!

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