Spirits Up! Is Hosting a Week of Wellness Pop-Up Events Around Philly
The new series — which is centered on “Black health, creativity, life and freedom” — will kick off on June 14th, with events planned for different public spaces all around the city.
Last June, during the height of social unrest around the country, Sudan Green launched Spirits Up! with a six-day yoga and meditation protest that popped up in major parks around Philadelphia. He was tired of people of color being left out of important conversations and how that exclusivity extended to the wellness world. He wanted to create a truly inclusive, truly safe space for people who had experienced systemic racial trauma to focus on healing.
“Usually when you walk into a fitness class in Philadelphia, it’s taught by a white instructor, usually white women,” says Green. “They don’t have the cultural competency to teach Black, brown, and indigenous people in their most vulnerable states, and you get pretty vulnerable when you are practicing yoga or meditation.”
Next week, Spirits Up! is back with Spirit Wake, a weeklong yoga and meditation event (sponsored by AllBirds), which will feature speakers, poets, games, and more. This year’s events will be held on June 14th, 16th, 18th, 19th, and 20th. “Each of those days we’re going to be in different public spaces, including Rittenhouse Square, Malcolm X Park, Clark Park, Lemon Hill, and Fairmount Park,” says Green.
Beyond that week, Spirits Up! will be teaming up with Ars Nova workshop, a jazz music organization, for classes at Woodland Hills Cemetery. Those classes will be held throughout the summer, every Wednesday from July 7th through September 27th.
Ultimately, Green is seeking to raise enough funds to plant roots in Germantown, creating a brick-and-mortar wellness space for everybody and every body. It will also include a digital platform to virtually reach individuals outside of Philadelphia.
With a sponsorship from Black Star, Green is confident that his dreams for Spirits Up! will come to fruition. Through the Germantown studio and website, Green plans to connect anyone regardless of background with skilled, welcoming Black instructors. He believes that there are unnecessary barriers to wellness, and he hopes that his future space will be inclusive to all, no matter their race, size, or socioeconomic background.
“Engaging in wellness and alternative wellness is a form of Black liberation,” says Green.
For more information on Spirits Wake, follow Spirits Up! on Instagram.