Work Out With Karlie Kloss’ Trainer
I couldn’t wait to talk to fitness guru Traci Copeland, an in-demand yoga and bootcamp instructor here in NYC. The former dancer calls herself a yoga-athlete; her popular yoga classes are set to a hip-hop soundtrack, and she just developed a free, high energy Vinyasa Rush Yoga workout for the Nike+ Training Club App. She also helped whip model Karlie Kloss into shape before her big Nike shoot. Here’s Traci’s take on how yoga can benefit your body, her advice for women who’ve never exercised before, why she wears makeup when she dances.
BB: You are a Nike Master Trainer because you dance, you train, you teach yoga—how did you get into everything?
TC: I started taking dance classes after college. It became a hobby, and whatever you do in your down time often becomes your full time. I decided to drop everything and focus on dance. It led to yoga because, as an athlete, I have had so many injuries and operations, and yoga has actually saved my body. Practicing regularly, every day and sometimes even twice a day, has allowed me to be a lot more sustainable in this industry. But yoga wasn’t enough for me. I played a lot of sports so I needed something that was also kind of high intensity. I needed that competitive edge and yoga doesn’t have that, so I added physical fitness and training. Which led me to partner with Nike.
BN: Some people say all you need is yoga and you will burn all this fat, that’s really not true is it?
TC: You do not do yoga for fat burning. I recommend doing yoga for flexibility, an increased sense of patience, and getting more meditative. If you are someone who likes to challenge yourself and take on different poses, it also gives you an opportunity to work up to harder things like a handstand.
BB: Headstands require a lot of strength! So does yoga help build muscles?
TC: Definitely. I always encourage people to change it up, even change your teacher, because it is so easy to get comfortable in a certain style. You do need to really challenge yourself in new ways. You don’t really know what you are capable of if you do not expand. It is a great form of strength training, using your own body. I have gotten so strong from yoga.
BB: What do you tell women that have never exercised before? Where do you start, how do you do it?