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UDE OKOYE
BREAKDANCER . FATHER . WANDERER . YOGI


Name:  UDE OKOYE
Hometown:  LONDON, UK
Current town:  LONDON, UK

Yoga practice style:  HATHA
Twitter:  @wheresude                                                                                                                                                                                                           
Instagram:  @sirude

What's your story?  That's a LONG story...

How would you describe yourself?  I'm someone who's interested in people; I love talking to people - particularly about yoga. I love training hard and learning new things but, at the same time, I’m a daydreamer that likes to have fun.
 


We’ve all got a few stories that we aren’t the most proud of, care to share one?  I’m constantly making mistakes! It used to get me down but I realised life is less boring when things aren't going exactly your way - it makes you think and keeps you on your toes. But do I want to share those mistakes with the world? That might just be another mistake...

What’s the best & worst job you’ve ever had?  I’ve had some BAD jobs! One of my first was putting lids on bottles, and then putting those bottles in boxes… Sometimes being on tour as a dancer could be pretty bad too - doing shows where the living conditions and the food were saddening, to say the least.

I have had some great jobs, too. Some of my best memories are of spending time with friends, laughing and joking about, and getting paid for it - so I guess for me it’s more about the people I work with than the job I’m doing. 
 


Favourite meal:  I'm not fussy about food. If its fresh, clean, organic, seasonal, locally-sourced, freshly-prepared and nicely presented, I'm good. If I’m drinking, I like my spirits dark, smooth and sweet….

Is that fussy?! I like tea and biscuits too!!

What is one fact that most other people wouldn’t know about you?  I fall in love easy.

If you could do it all again, what would you change?  I would change a whole heap. I genuinely believe a life can’t be led without regret. That's how we learn. And if you can change something to make it all better then you should. 
 


Ok, let’s talk about yoga, how’d you get into it?  I got into yoga because I wanted to get more flexible. I was dancing a lot at that time and I was trying hard to get my head in the game. Then I went to a Bikram class right here in London and got hooked.  From then on, things changed: I started to notice my health improve in different ways and knew I’d tapped into something pretty special.

Do you teach? What’s that like?  I teach different types of classes. I found a very different side of myself teaching yoga - a side I’d never reached breakdancing - and a new respect for the power of positive thinking. I am more aware now of the impact that you can have on a person with a single word. I love teaching. It’s incredible to feel part of the energy exchange of those that come to practice.
 


What was the biggest challenge when you first started?  When I first starting teaching, I found remembering the sequences really tough… And, then, it was about having the guts to branch out into other styles and sequences - that’s still a challenge. It’s all because I would worry about the expectations of others. But as I learnt more, I realised that I can only be myself, and give what I have to give.

Why do you keep coming back?  Im a physical person and at my happiest when I can move exactly as I please. Thats the first reason I practice. But then there are those days when you simply can't get out of bed because of injury, or maybe emotional pain, and yoga still helps you to get past that.

 


Best yoga story?  Once, just as I was about to start teaching a class, a very hippie-looking, dreaded, tattooed, skinny girl came in to the room. She found a mat and sat down but looked really unsettled. As I started to introduce myself to the class she raised her hand and asked if she was in the right studio. I said yes. She said the Karma wasn't right and just left!

Most embarrassing one?  I once left home to teach without my yoga clothes.  The only thing I had in my bag was a pair of running leggings, so that’s how I taught the class. It was a new look for me!

 


Yoga is:  The things brings me to the present, into a place of appreciation for that moment. For me, it’s a cure-all. If you haven’t done it, you should try it.

Your mantra:  Fear less. Hope more. Eat less. Chew more. Whine less. Breathe more. Talk less. Say more. Love more and all good things will be yours.


 

Interviewed: March 5th, 2015

Photos by @michaeljameswong and property of BOYS OF YOGA Ltd.

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