how to cop the perfect yoga poses on a hiking trip

being a travelling yogi can be frustrating in keeping up with your practice or spreading the yoga cheer as I love to call it. I believe that yogis are like evangelists. They bring mindfulness and joy to every space they are so when travelling, you need to bring that cheer with you and take advantage of the wanderlust atmosphere around you so you can cop magaical moments that inspires & fuels our imagination. 

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lotus pose & a peace in front of a native shrine symbolic of bringing respect and peaceful spirit to a place of worship. I don’t need to be part of them but I respect the ethnicity of what they represent because I represent God.


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the lord of the dancer pose is the perfect classic outside the mat. All you need is a wall or a sort of stand. It could be a bridge rail, door knob, wall, balcony, pole etc. Simply hold onto the object with one hand and raise into a lord of the dancer pose or wall split. And you get the easiest wall pose.


the compass pose - front side is great for depicting a view. Just as the name suggests, the leg up in compass direction is to be directed at where the view is featured. In this case, above the rock where the majestic layout of Olumo rock is situated. Just don’t forget to smile 😊


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The compass pose - back side is great for a calm view. Not majestic. It’s a great contrast for landscapes where the subject is rather closer to the camera. Try to pointe the toes and straighten the knees as much as you can. Keep the body upright and let the cameraman focus on the landscape with the yogi on either side of the frame.  


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the low lunge is every Instagram model’s must have. It’s great for revealing how far your splits have come and even when your splits have not come far, it makes you look like a great yogi. The palms are also great for showing information or a sense of awareness and obeisance. It can also be supported by placing hands to the ground. Totally simple! 


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this pose may look hard to get into however the hardest part is the angles by the cameraman. The camera must be set at the same level of the face or even an inch or more lower than the face. It should also be set from the angle of where the feet is pointed and align with the aesthetics of the background. Most importantly, the pose is best done on a platform above the ground and not on the ground. If not it looks like a weird chicken 😂😂😂 


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the down dog leg up split is great in between spaces. Down dog is a simple sometimes boring pose done on the mat however to get a dramatic feeling of it, find a space in between two objects or two walls close to each other, a bridge hand rail, the floor and a pillar, two rocks affected by erosion etc; set the feet firmly on one end and the palms on the other. Hold firmly and raise one leg up while the camera shoots from below through the side in order to get a good view behind the yogi. Makes for a great view. 


the splits is my personal favorite. Find a great park bench and a view. It’s best done on surfaces above the ground level. But even if you’ve only got the ground, have the camera on the floor to capture th same level with the background. Raise palms to the sky and gaze at the thumb or hold out hands to each side parallel to the legs, smile at the camera and be free. 


What are your go-to Yoga poses when traveling? can you share a link to your perfect pose? Would love to hear all about it. 

Namaste 🙏🏽 

Celebrating 3 years on my Yoga Journey

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March 2018, I celebrated 3 years of practicing yoga and journeying through meditation, mental health and lifestyle. I remember when I started practicing, I had never heard of Yoga except as an odd story and even at that, I didn’t really understand what it was. I just knew that even though I was not fat, I was greatly dissatisfied with my unhealthy lifestyle and declining health. I hated eating and perceived all food with utter abomination (I preferred junk). So I started jogging around my estate but since I usually closed work very late, it became risky to jog late at night. I remember jogging at 10pm until midnight and the dogs in the estate would literally chase me till I got to my house. Whewwwww.... 

 

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So I went online and started looking for domestic options to keeping fit and working out - that was when I found Yoga. The following Sunday, I told my pastor about it and he forbade me, stating it was demonic. So I went again into full extensive research and learned it’s extremes and safe spaces. I got myself a mat and yoga block off Jumia and started practicing. I remember going for sleepover in my cousins house and taking my mat with me. I would practice after morning devotion and at night before bed. One time my mom came visiting and she knowing that I never woke up early for morning devotion found me at the balcony around 5am in the morning practicing on my mat - she didn’t even have an idea what I was doing. She sat there and watched me till I finished and then she sighed

“Hmmmmmm... Which one is this one again?” 

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The truth is I never really understood it. Understood why I was practicing this workout that seemed so complicated & didn’t really involve cardio movement but got me sweating my nerves out just after 10 mins. I had downloaded an app called “FitStar Yoga”  and subscribed annually for yoga videos. Each session left me breathless and my mat soaked in sweat. 6 months later, I asked my brother for a photo shoot because I just didn’t know if anything had changed in my body. I needed to see some form of change or I would stop practicing. 

I searched Instagram and found advanced yogis like me online whose IG showcased starry eyed images of unimaginable and impossible poses. I screen grabbed some of them and headed to Jabi Lake in Abuja to shoot some pictures. To my amazement, I could get into about 70% of these poses even though I had never practiced them before. I had stuck to my basic practice. When the pictures came out, I could see that my body had improved. It seemed like someone gave me a new body. 

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That was motivation enough to keep practicing. I joined a yoga class taught by Basante at Transcorp Hilton and soon after, he encouraged me to assist some of his beginners classes. That was a huge step for me! A year later, I noticed everything about my health and lifestyle had unconsciously changed. I ate better. I had less anxiety & panic attacks. I grew an optimistic mindset and a tough determination to do things. My eating was regular and I looked to healthy foods and fruits instead of junk. I was able to wake early to pray and meditate. I learned to consciously breathe and be mindful about things and people around me. My arms and shoulders were toned out. Literally! 

Like, really toned out! Everyone began to ask if I lift weights! My Life had changed!

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Later that year, i made a huge step and moved to Lagos. I was really scared that I would lose everything I had managed to build into a habit. So I sought out a community of yogis. TRUPPR invited me to teach Yoga on their platform and I started hosting classes on their app. Later, Pop Beach invited me to host their yoga sessions at their beach retreats. After few months, I travelled for a 100 hr Yoga Teacher training with the goal to become better in my practice. When I came back, a friend of mine introduced me to Bodyline Gym in Ikoyi and I started teaching Yoga classes there and at few hotels in town. Then a Yogi friend of mine started her studio and I joined her studio in partnership to teach classes - Breathe Studio. Shortly after, a colleague introduced me to Lotus Gym VI to take their yoga classes. I began to earn from yoga and that’s another gift that kept on giving.

 

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I remember sometime ago when I used a yoga pose as my WhatsApp dp and my mom went into shreds about it  it was a headstand with Lotus feet. She sworn that I was out to kill my unborn children and become infertile  she said I was gonna die and all one could imagine! That was when I told her I was practicing yoga and it was healthy for me. I grew up as an asthmatic child and it grew worse as I grew older. Practicing yoga had helped me to control my breaths and survive very sore asthmatic attacks helping me understand how best to take care of myself. My mom never cares about this improvement - she went strait to my Pa and told him that the Devil has claimed me. A week later, I walk out of my office premises and see my Pa standing just right outside. I was truly shocked but that’s my pa’s style. He quietly asks to follow me home so we get to my house and the first thing he asks is my Yoga mat. I show him and yadiyadiyadiyadiya... you can imagine.

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After he was done, I then asked him to demonstrate how he stretches when he was hours at his desk working through the night. Irritated, he tried to show me some poses and then I began to correct his postures and helped him improve his breathing by maintaining more calm in each stretch. He said he felt better. I told him right then that I just assisted him in a short yoga practice of Backbends and shoulder stretches. He prayed for me that night and left for his Hotel. We never talked about it again since that day. My mom never mentioned it - I really don’t know what they think but I’m glad I could show them what I do - exactly.

 

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This journey has seen me frustrated beyond measure, fallen and injured from risky poses yet never giving up, unlearning & learning so many vital life lessons & philosophies, attaining a meta-physical mindset that I can do anything because if I could accomplish such impossible poses on the mat, certainly there’s nothing I couldn’t do; becoming patient with myself and mostly others, expecting nothing from anyone, focusing squarely on my goals & Never blaming anyone for any fault or issues, becoming sufficient for myself and learning self care, growing a community of yogis willing to live healthy and balanced lifestyles and more so, deepening my relationship with God beyond religion - I’ve learned to know God, to talk to him, to personally journey with him through all the tenets of my life and meditating on his word practically as it pertains to my daily life, learning to journal my thoughts, dreams, desires, troubles and mostly, my blessings to him. 

 

I’ve never existed in a more happier, golden, dazzling, faith-driven, purpose given, spiritual living and healthy lifestyle season in my Life. My mission is to live this way the rest of my Life. 
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So here's to many more anniversaries of my Yoga Journey 🥂 

Namaste

🙏🏽