I wasn’t sure what to expect of the trap yoga class at Khepera Wellness in Brookland. I kind of expected it to be yoga dancing, which I don’t think is a thing. I thought we would move from Warrior I to booty drops and then add choreography. I have no coordination, and true story, got yelled at in geriatric aerobics class (didn’t know it was for old people when I signed up) because I couldn’t get the swaying moves right and repeatedly ended up facing the back corner until the instructor yelled “YOU CAN’T SEE THE MOVES IF YOU’RE NOT FACING ME!” at which point I gave up. It was the worst and I was not super excited to embarrass myself publicly again, but I’m willing to do it for BYT.
I was relieved once class got rolling and it turned out the class is just yoga set to trap music. I still don’t fully understand what trap music is, and I’m embarrassed writing that. I feel like I should know at this point, but I’m not cool or hip or whatever and I don’t keep up on music. I listen to whatever Spotify gives me, which at this point is exclusively Christmas music.
We quickly fell into a pretty typical Vinyasa sequence, but with hip hop music instead of that soothing atmospheric music most classes play, or silence. Silence is the worst because you hear every move the people around you make and then you’re hyper self conscious about breathing. The loud trap music made sure that wasn’t a problem. I worried that I wouldn’t like the trap music because what I like about yoga is the meditativeness (not a word but you understand) and the peace, but I actually found that the beat from the music helped clear my mind and matched up well to our sequences. Good job Brandon on picking super appropriate songs. I only half recognized one of the songs during class, and I couldn’t tell you what that was. It felt incongruous in a fun way to do yoga while listening to trap lyrics instead of vague whooshing sounds.
Brandon has been teaching the class since March, but he’s been practicing yoga to trap music for years. Since he added it to his practice, he figured it might be something other people in the community would be interested in. He was right. The class I attended was completely full, not in that uncomfortable butts-in-your-face-during-straddle-fold way, but every comfortable space in the room had a mat.
I definitely recommend having a pretty solid baseline knowledge of yoga before taking the class. If you’ve made your way through a few Vinyasa classes then you should be set, since this is basically just that. If you’ve never taken a yoga class, or if you did it for a unit in gym class in high school and tell people that you “do yoga” from time to time, you’re probably going to be lost. The class moves quickly and Brandon doesn’t really explain how to get into position, and the music is pretty loud so it would be hard to hear his instructions anyway. This is fine though, since it seems like most people are regulars. While the class moved quickly, we held each pose for a long enough time to really feel the burn. Because of the trap music I felt like were moving faster, but the pain in my thighs and my mental counting let me know that we were keeping it slow.
The only really rough parts of class came from my own bad choices; I had done a heavy leg day the day before at the gym, despite knowing I had this class, so chair pose made me want to die, but thankfully the trap music covered up my irritated sighing. The baggy shirt I wore was a bad call, because it kept going up over my face in down dog. Also table top and lizard were painful because I had wiped out hard two weeks before and my knee is still kind of a wreck.
If you do yoga, but don’t enjoy the super zen-ness or the pretentiousness or corporate-ness of a lot of studios and enjoy trap music, I definitely recommend this class. Everyone was super friendly and the class was chill but challenging. The studio also offers other yoga classes like Black Girl Magic yin yoga and capoeira, which I’ve always been curious about.
I wanted to take an after photo, but the yin class started right away and the lights were off and I didn’t want to be disruptive, so I snapped a selfie of my face outside so you can see my slight raccoon eyes and general shininess. You’re welcome.