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Meet The Women Creating Yoga Spaces For Women Of Colour

The first time I did an online search for “yoga for people of colour + UK”, all of the results were from the United States. There were a number of articles addressing the cultural appropriation and whiteness of mainstream yoga practices, studios and classes on larger platforms such as Elle.com, The Atlantic, and Yoga Journal, as well as several blog posts written by both white people and people of colour on the subject of cultural appropriation. As an American who has lived outside of the US for half of her life, it was really important for me to find literature from communities within the the UK. But I did not.

About four months later, I repeated the same search and was excited to find a Meetup group; London yoga for people of colour, founded by Danielle Bastian of Essex. Immediately I reached out to Danielle, who goes by Danni, and we arranged to meet in person. In her response she wrote that my message was “a refreshing change from the ‘this group is racist’ emails I've been receiving recently”. In February of this year, Danni travelled to Rishikesh, one of the holy cities in India and a centre for yoga in the country, to complete her teacher training in ashtanga-vinyasa yoga.