Ninie Ahmad: Off her yoga mat.

Her affirmations of staying optimistic especially when she's (upside) down.

I came, I saw, I coloured.

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I have been invited to participate in adidas Fitness Academy (adidas FA) since last year. When it first started, the academy provided training for three fitness majors – Yoga, Dance and Combat for selected instructors from Asia-Pacific. I always count my blessing on getting chosen for adidas only chooses ONE instructor per Asia-Pacific country (although five instructors from bigger Asian countries like China, Taiwan and Korea). It is held twice a year and I am lucky enough to have been handpicked for three adidas FA so far – Shanghai (Spring/Summer ’08), KL (Spring/Summer ’09) and Beijing (Fall/Winter ’09). For the latter, adidas FA introduced another two fitness majors – Fitness and Personal Training.

adidas FA Beijing '09

For adidas FA: YOGA, these 30 selected yoga instructors (most of them are their country’s own adidas Yoga Ambassadors) will be trained and certified to teach a new breed of yoga developed by Rainbeau Mars.

Rainbeau Mars (yes, that’s her real name) is best known as the ultimate yoga celebrity as she trains Hollywood celebrities (Jeremy Piven, Owen Wilson, John Cusack, Ben Stiller, Ashley Olsen, etc) and world’s best sportsmen (Laila Ali, Jonah Lomu, Steffi Graf, etc). She has elevated her career to a successful collaboration with adidas, becoming the Global Ambassador for their yoga collection and recently launched her own adidas Rainbeau Mars Signature collection with eco-conscious yoga fashion wear.

adidas Fitness Academy Beijing '09

The hybrid yoga developed by Rainbeau Mars with adidas taught during adidas FA is called ra’Yoka™, which is an innovative and integrative practice combining fundamental principles of yoga, enhanced with a breath-centered flow, dynamic, explosive martial arts movements and core connection with total body balance integration. ra’Yoka manifested itself through Rainbeau’s personal journey of self-discovery and desire to find a practice that promoted courage and integartion of the body and mind while maintaining the beneficial openness of yoga. ra’Yoka maintains its authentic intention of a mind/body connection with the Ashtanga yoga laws of ahimsa (non-harm) and satya (truth) as well as Niyamas (personal ethics) and Yamas (social ethics).

ra’Yoka™ integates ‘Seven Leveled System’ according to the colours of rainbow / body chakra:

Levels of Content

Body Location

Elements & Themes

Physical Focus





[ Meditation ]

Mediation, affirmationand openness



Upper Brow


[ Balance ]

Mental focus, balance, breath, inversions

Level BLUE




[ Communication ]

Vocal and body harmony using sounds & affirmations





[ Opening ]

Heart, chest, shoulder openers & backbends

Level Yellow

(Core Power)

Solar Plexus


[ Power ]

Core lifting, arm balances, core twists



Pelvic Floor


[ Detoxification ]

Uddiyana Bandhas, deep twists, hip openers

Level RED




[ Foundation ]

Standing poses, alignment, ankles and feet openers

adidas FA Shanghai '08

During the adidas FA Shanghai ’08, the participants were introduced to the Overview of ra’Yoka. I did share in my previous blog of how I came to Shanghai with excruciating kidney stone pain and how I came back to KL with none (stone left).


Isn’t it amazing, how by simply repeating a simple Warrior II (Virabhadrasana II) helped me escape a kidney surgery?

Then came adidas FA KL ’09 last February where we explored in detail Level Yellow: Core Power.

adidas FA KL '09

In KL, the whole concept made perfect sense to me when Rainbeau generalizes that people who are physically flexible are often very open, very giving and very vulnerable in nature while those who appear very strong and muscular are emotionally very reserved, unfriendly and penny-pinching for many.

If you can imagine this: someone who can do Lord of Dancer Pose (Natarajasana) will almost never gets six-pack abs and same applies to those who have six-packs abs will not be able to enjoy dropbacks to Wheel Pose (Urdhva Dhanurasana).

One of the many best perks in yoga is: it helps you be both flexible and strong. ONE DAY.

For someone who is quite open in the spine area, I couldn’t agree more for the natural traits and I know I could use a little bit if not a lot of core strengthening (to be a little bit ‘stingy’) for I was just about to open BE Yoga back then – so the yoga classes wouldn’t be all FOC :P.

She highly emphasized on how most female yoga instructors could use a lot of strengthening especially from the core so that we don’t overstretch (since almost nothing hurts) and be all over the place in alignment.

For some, even this doesn't hurt!

I can’t wait to share in my next pose what I learned from my recent trip to Beijing, China for adidas FA Level Orange.

Have a blessed and productive Monday for now!

Love and light.


One Response

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  1. I’m so glad I found this site…Keep up the good work

    Bill Bartmann

    September 7, 2009 at 2:37 AM

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