Ok, aunties, we get it. Y'all are outside.
We've seen Gabrielle Union glistening while sprinting at 6 a.m., Kerry Washington jumping on trampolines, Lupita Nyong'o bench pressing and we can't forget Chrisette Michelle, who's been learning to skate from her friend and influencer Tierra O'Neal.
O'Neal is among countless social media personalities we've seen flocking to parks for skating, boarding and more, and frankly, we're inspired. Here are some other folks encouraging us to get into the active, outdoor life:
1. Sarah Olaniran
Sarah Olaniran has built a viral TikTok and Instagram account with unapologetic dance moves and a larger-than-life personality. With nearly 500,000 social media followers, the dancers' movements and sultry looks are often imitated by TikTok followers, choreographers and more. The Nigerian-American starlet is a seasoned dancer, choreographer and fitness coach and has a dance degree from Columbia College.
With over a decade in the game, Olaniran is well-versed in ballroom dance, ballet, jazz, hip hop, salsa, contemporary and more. The versatile dancer has taken the international web by storm, working with Wizkid, Chris Brown, Tiwa Savage, MrEazi and more. Olaniran can be seen teaching virtually and in-person across the globe. Her #RahDanceInvasion is sure to inspire you to get up and move your hips.
2. Toni Bravo
Toni Bravo recently partnered with #AdobePartner to be featured on their #StoriesOnSkates series. Adobe is creating new skate designs which are “inspired by Black skate stories across the world.”
Since Bravo gained popularity from her TikTok account, she's established contracts with other significant influencers to promote Black stories. Bravo has turned her childhood interest into a motivating passion instead of merely being recognized by her appearance. Beautiful and vibrant, Bravo is an example of how fruitful hobbies can become.
Roller skating also jump-started Bravo’s interest in expressive fashion.
“I resonate with style skating because skating has encouraged me to be playful when it comes to expressing my style," she shared. "Whether it’s through learning a new skate move or mixing up patterns and colors, skating has truly pushed me to have fun with how I choose to express myself.”
3. Alex Koufman
You won't be hard-pressed to find Alex Koufman somewhere on a beach doing a child's pose. The influencer started consistently practicing yoga in 2014, and in just a year, completed her training to become a teacher. As a seasoned yogi, she's found that the practice grounds the mind, body and soul and inspires confidence both on and off the mat.
As an instructor in the Bahamas since 2015, her online platform embodies the importance of self-love and body positivity. To her, yoga is a no-judgment zone. Well-versed in the traditional practices of yoga, Koufman also enjoys adding her modern flair to her teaching. Her gorgeously curated Instagram is pure inspiration.
4. Aaliyah Warren
You may have seen Aaliyah Warren around the cyberverse twirling and showing off her impeccable skating skills. She's been mastering both roller skating and striking poses as a model for roller skating companies. On her Instagram, you can see her strutting her stuff at roller rinks and practicing new dance moves.
Warren has gained the attention of celebrities like Snoop Dogg and India Love who both follow her on the gram. Her award-winning skate team continues to compete globally and continues to slay skating challenges.
5. Tierra O'Neal
Tierra O'Neal promotes healthy well-being and Black joy. She is also the friend and content creator who helped Michele fall in love with non-traditional activities like pole dancing and roller skating.
Her motivational posts about staying active through skating, walking, yoga or hiking, encourages her followers to live with mindful intention. When not outside, O'Neal is growing her brand — she currently has over 10,000 followers. Her entrepreneurial work has led her to gain partnerships, travel the world, build a successful YouTube channel and provide brand assistance for emerging companies.
6. Maryam Abdul Karim
Maryam Abdul Karim is a certified yoga instructor and doula from South Central Los Angeles who believes yoga can heal people of color. Her work targets BIPOC women who have experienced extreme stress, assault or trauma. This new wave yogi began her journey helping midwives and providing emotional support for pregnant women and those who've experienced miscarriages.
As a young Black Muslim woman, Abdul’s passion lies in assisting women — specifically Black women — with getting the medical care and resources they need. Karim provides teaching and classes where yoga and meditation is the center of powerful healing tool. She began practicing yoga as a sense of purpose, balance and a feeling of rootedness as a young Black Muslim woman. Now, her work has helped thousands. Her classes and inspirational Instagram feed with have your chakras aligned and feeling balanced in no time.
7. Jamal Hill
What makes his story inspirational is that he was diagnosed with Charcot Marie Tooth, a neurological condition that caused loss of muscle tissue and touch sensation, when he was little. He's been defying the odds ever since. Hill's passion for swimming has led him to help other people fall in love with the sport as he started the Swim-Up Hill, an organization teaching swimming and other forms of fitness to community youth. He'll have you perfecting your breaststroke and looking like a champ in just a matter of time.
And, tune in to our 11/24 Instagram Live conversation with Jamal about equity in water safety, youth education, and advocacy. Plus, the journey to becoming a pro water athlete.
— Heal the Bay (@HealTheBay) November 23, 2020
8. Lestraundra Alfred
Lestraundra Alfred is a social media manager, personal trainer, host and creator of the Balanced Black Girl podcast. In 2012, this Seattle native started her journey as a trainer and nutrition coach. In 2014, she launched her first blog, The Balanced Berry, to encourage others to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle. Her hard work and dedication led her to help women reach wellness goals for over five years.
Like the adaptable queen she is, in 2018, she pivoted to create Balanced Black Girl to introduce her community to Black women experts in health and wellness. If Alfred isn't a household name already, she will be soon. With almost 30k followers and a viral presence, Alfred is making a name for herself as a traveler, adventurer, and explorer. She can be seen on Instagram climbing mountains, stretching by palm trees and drinking oat milk.
9. Ron Griswell
HBCU grad Ron Griswell is the founder and CEO of HBCUs Outside, a socially conscious non-profit organization that helps students at historically Black colleges and universities access the outdoors. Griswell's mission has been to encourage Black students to explore the outdoors by organizing excursions.
Through his charitable efforts, Griswell provides access to gear and connects outdoor-minded Black students. Two years after its forming at North Carolina A&T State University, the organization launched nationwide this year. Griswell can be seen hiking mountains, going on walking trails and kayaking. Griswell is sure to have you daring the outdoors this fall.
10. Daevon Willis
Daevon Willis, "Black Dave" keeps the culture alive with a skateboard and fire lyrics. This trendsetter and skateboarder has been rapping since 2012. Earlier this year, the New York City resident released his "On Da Map" track, accompanied by a video featuring his impeccable skateboarding technique at the Bowery. His viral videos and daring moves have landed him on the cover of magazines like Fader and XXL.
His Black Donald Trump and Stay Black mixtapes gained mass attention and started conversations around politics and race. His YouTube channel, spotlighting his daring moves and controversial lyrics, has garnered over 1.7 million views. Willis' custom signature can be purchased on skateboards at Chapman's in New York.
Whether it's skating, running, hiking, or yoga, Black people are finding new waves to stay active and get in shape and we want in.