Hackney Half x Yogahood Special

Did you know that yoga can reduce you chance of injury? Yogahood superstar instructor, Sanchia Legister, highlights that yoga is also great to help you get into a healthy mindset ahead of your next running event, like the Hackney Half!

Get in that mindset and warm up with us ahead of the Hackney Half on Friday 17 May for stretch and mobility sessions hosted by Virgin Active, Sweat & Sound & The Refinery – there’s so much to discover at the Festival of Fitness.

Sanchia has shared some of her inspirational yoga and running wisdom for our Hackney Half runners to help with their training and making sure they’re preparing from the inside out, at a special Yogahood session taught by Sanchia herself. Two of her top tips for runners are:

  1. You don’t want a tight body, you want a right body! Step onto the mat and do some breathing and stretching exercises to get rid of aches and pains.
  2. As a runner, you spend most of your time on one leg. Try some balance poses to increase your strength and alignment.

Stepping into the peaceful atmosphere at Stretch studio (just off Broadway Market), with hints of essential oils, we immediately wondered: why don’t we do this every weekend?! Inside the serene studio, resting on each beautifully laid out mat was an individual KIND bar tempting us with its nutty, chocolaty deliciousness.

If you have never taken one of Sanchia’s Yogahood classes, it can be described as an inspirational and contemporary yoga experience with the poses to smooth sounding hip hop. As a Hackney Half runner, Sanchia stresses the importance of cross-training for runners. Her motivational classes highlight the importance of yoga not only for race success, but also for success in life.


Photo: Adam Corbett´╗┐

Sanchia’s drive for diversity in the yoga community and her personal aspirations led her to create #Yogahood. See Sanchia’s story:

Life was pretty dope, I had a handful of bling in the form of medals from running half, full and ultra marathons, but I wanted more. I woke up one day and realised that I wasn’t going to magically become the person I saw in my future. Of course I knew this, but this time it felt different. I was making the decision to put some dedicated time and energy into me and into becoming this person. I wasn’t on some new me flex, I just wanted to be a better me.

So I stuck to the promise I made to myself…
Fast forward to completing my yoga teacher training, I felt frustrated with the lack of diversity (in all senses of the word) in yoga settings, so I took my tight hamstring self and decided to do something about it and try to open up the yoga and wellness scene and created, #Yogahood. I now bring my big Afro, big smile and good vibes to the mat, with a fiyah playlist to help you find freedom, space and unapologetic movement, in the hope of bringing yoga to the people dem. 


Photo: Adam Corbett´╗┐

Her classes are filled with laughter, jokes, and soul – each pose is guided with care and good humour. The overall messages of her classes are to focus on yourself and to just do you! Try visualising your race day and striding along the Hackney Half route. With Sanchia inspiring you to greatness, you’ll leave her classes feeling empowered and one step closer to achieving your Hackney Half goals.

Yoga and more fantastic fitness activities will be hosted throughout the Hackney Festival of Fitness. Join us on Friday 17 May for stretch and mobility sessions hosted by Virgin Active, Sweat & Sound & The Refinery. There is so much to discover with our jam packed Friday and Saturday lineups leading up to the Hackney Half.

Did you join us on 17 March? Check out photos by Adam Corbett below and share your favourites:

Join us at the next training session on 3 April, with 2:30 Hackney Half pacer, Be Manzini. She’ll be taking runners through a Writing x Running Workshop.

Tickets for Hackney Festival of Fitness and Hackney Half are on sale now! Taking place from 17-19 May on Hackney Marshes.

Get day tickets, race entries, and multi-day packages here.