Many people are familiar with the cliche “health is wealth.” But more than a cliche, exercise and physical fitness are great ways to relieve stress and to simply be healthy. Find out what local fitness experts, activists and trainers are doing in the District — creating nontraditional workouts that are good for the body, mind and spirit.

Khepera Wellness/Trap Yoga – If you don’t know Khepera Wellness you may be more familiar with their creation “Trap Yoga.” Trap Yoga is one of several yoga practices that the founders and instructors of Khepera Wellness have created with people of color in mind. Speaking to his motivation to choose trap music in a video released to Youtube, Khepera Wellness founder Brandon Copeland said, “most of the lyrics and subject matter are based on things that you normally wouldn’t hear about, hustling and working hard. The music reflects the artist will to make something out of nothing.”

Project Black Flag DC – If you’re familiar with Zog Sports or DC Fray you are aware of the new young professionals team sports that have become the new happy hour. Team sports offer a great way to meet like minded young professionals as well as to blow off some steam after a busy workday or week. Project Black Flag DC offers these benefits as well as a race, gender inclusivity that other group sports may not offer. Plus videos from competitions online makes it look like a blast for participants and spectators.

Personal Training – Sometimes there is no substitute for being in the actual gym. However, as anyone with a dusty New Year’s resolution gym membership can tell you sometimes being present is just the first step. Enter two of our favorite area trainers Serge Sejour and Gym Jonez. Sejour, a former Howard University Bison and professional football player now focuses on helping others reach the peak fitness he has achieved. Gym Jonez is a fitness activist who focuses on helping everyone — including those from disadvantaged communities — making fitness a part of their everyday routine.

Running Clubs – As the great Kanye West once said, “baby, I got a plan, runaway fast as you can.” This is a motto that two area running groups have taken literally. District Running Collective as well as Black Girls Run both use running to bring a positive impact to different communities. Of course most things are more fun in a group, but remember running is one of the most low impact sports in terms of participation. All that is required are comfortable running clothes, sneakers and a route, so remember to hydrate and pace yourself!

ChipN – Sometimes the best cure for the spirit is helping others. Created by the founders of Broccoli City Festival, ChipN allows users to create and monitor social justice campaigns. According to ChipN’s website “users are rewarded by exchanging their earned “chips” for sponsored incentives. Rewards range from products from popular brands to tickets for a broad range of events and experiences.” Irrespective of rewards as they say giving is the gift that keeps on giving.

Although the events listed above vary in terms of time and commitment, what they all have in common is their desire to help you work towards being a better version of yourself. Whatever you choose remember to engage, not only for your physical health, but your mental and emotional well-being.

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WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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