Step onto the mat and prepare to embark on a transformative journey as we sit down with the visionary behind the movement that's fusing trap music and yoga into a soul-stirring experience – Trap Yoga Bae. In this exclusive interview, we delve into the empowering fusion of beats and poses that is redefining wellness. Britteny Floyd-Mayo, the dynamic force behind Trap Yoga Bae, shares insights into the profound connection between confidence, healing, and the unapologetic expression of self. Join us as we explore the harmonious intersection of trap vibes and mindfulness, unraveling the story of a woman who's not just leading a fitness revolution but sparking a powerful movement of self-love and authenticity. Get ready to be inspired by the rhythmic flow that transcends the traditional boundaries of yoga and elevates it to a whole new level of empowerment.
Mimi: Who is Britteny? What’s your background? What were you doing before Trap Yoga Bae?
Britteny: Before Trap Yoga Bay, baby, I say like, I was one of the people who had it together on the surface, but was so deeply lost on the inside. I'd spent so much of my life living to what I now call the bullsh*t rules of society. Got married, got a college education, got a job, ( a government job at that), then you know you're making everybody happy and pleased with you. And that's really just what I was doing, and I think I was doing everything that I was “supposed” to do and nothing that brought me true joy. So that was my life before the brand.
Mimi: What was the “aha” moment that led you to where you are? Were you a yogi before? Explain how you got to have a passion for yoga.
Britteny: Yeah, I think that when I do these sorts of interviews, Mimi, people are looking for this like a super straightforward "Secretary Story" like A, B, C, D happened. And I think that's really doing people a disservice because life isn't that linear. It isn't that clean. It's actually, you know, quite sloppy. But when I think about pivotal moments of transformation, I've kind of narrowed down to a few, that I'll bullet point out. One, I'm from the hood and I used to like to fight. Which I say with a giggle, which tells you I actually was crazy. I even went to college and I got into a fight! But I was always bright and smart and a leader. I had someone who said, “Hey, that anger is going to get you hurt. You need anger management if you're going to stay at this college.” And part of that anger management was for me to go to yoga. And it wasn't the first, fourth or fifth yoga class. It was maybe the sixth or the seventh where I really was like, “damn. I love yoga and it is transformative for me.“ And I did exactly what anyone does when you find something that's amazing and life-changing. You take it for granted. And so I met a boy, I got married, we had two kids and I didn't practice yoga for at least six years. It really was nothing, it was in the back of my mind.
The next pivotal moment was me getting knocked upside my head the 50 /11 times and really realizing that I was in a physically and emotionally abusive marriage and this was going to kill me. And I realized that I was just so lost and I needed to go. And I asked myself the annoying question that people ask you when you lose something. It's such an annoying question, but it's really a good question. I asked myself, “where was the last place you saw you?” Because I was so lost and so broken after realizing how far in the depths of self -isolation and self -despair had allowed myself to be in nine years of that marriage and relationship.
And the last time that I could remember feeling like myself was in that yoga class six years before. I applied for several schools in India to become a certified yoga instructor. And I got into a yoga school in Rishikesh, India, and I stayed there. I declared that I wasn't gonna come home until I figured out who I was. And that landed me all over the globe, honestly. China, India, Brazil, Antigua, India. Antigua, like every chance I got, I was out trying to understand the world and trying to understand people. And so that next pivotal thing after traveling and learning yoga in India was practicing my identity and getting strong and solidified in that. So that I can be strong enough to come back to my life and be like, you don't know me. You got to meet me again. Those are my pivotal points: realizing that I had anger issues and finding yoga, being in that abusive marriage and then leaving, traveling to India and then the world and finding myself and then coming back. It's all fluid and not really that clean.
Mimi: I love the marriage of “Knuck If You Buck” to Yoga. (laughs)
Britteny: You know, that's the thing, right? Healing doesn't mean that you absorb yourself of your humanity. It means you integrate it. So, you know, I always joke and I'm like,
no, no, no, baby. Trap comes before yoga. I still practice non -violence in every form of my life, but I'm still from the hood. I still got those feelings. I'm still not somebody who wants to be played with. I am still connected to my roots. And I think that's really important to say. as a yogi, specifically a black woman as an entrepreneur because a lot of times we feel like in order to become the quote unquote higher version of ourselves means that we have to disown every other iteration of us. And so that “knuck, if you buck” energy is still with me. I'm still ratchet, but I found more self sustaining and elegant ways to express that and not let go of my roots.
Mimi: So it’s safe to say that yoga is definitely a tool of empowerment for your personal journey and now you’ve incorporated it into your platform to help other women. Walk us through the experience.
I feel like yoga, the practice in and of itself, specifically for women who relate to my story in some sort of way, is the biggest act of rebellion, is the biggest grind, is the biggest f*ck you to people. Because the world wants us to be angry and encumbered and weighed down and yoga does the exact opposite of that. And whereas people are taking delight in our suffering, yoga is my way of saying, but I refuse to suffer. I'm sorry that I can't make you proud. And so it's not just carving out that space to do something that really only benefits you. Like you're a mom and you cook food for your kids. Yes, hopefully there's enough for you to eat. too, but you're still nourishing other people. Yoga is one of those things that it's like I'm cooking this meal and this meal is for me and this is for mine and I want to feel better.........
Want to read the rest of the story? Head over to the January/February 2024 issueof Grind Pretty Magazine!
Written by Mimi Johnson
Monday night witnessed an unforgettable event as renowned video streaming app Tubi, esteemed production company MALKA, and the Women's National Basketball Players Association (WNBPA) came together to host the world premiere of "Shattered Glass: A WNBPA Story." Held at the WNBPA Headquarters in the bustling heart of New York City, this star-studded affair brought together luminaries from the worlds of sports and entertainment. The evening was marked by the presence of WNBA MVPs Breanna Stewart, Nneka Ogwumike, Jonquel Jones, WNBPA Executive Director Terri Carmichael Jackson, Shattered Glass Director Andrea Buccilla, and other notable figures.