Meet Orentsani Kikon, a pioneer of healthy living in Nagaland

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~~ By Natasha Dkhar

In a Christian majority state like Nagaland where a wide acceptance of application of 'Yoga' is still a distant dream, a lone Naga woman accepted this healthy art form against all odds while maintaining that yoga should be viewed not from a religious point of view rather, it should be accepted as a 'capsule' of healthy living.

With an aim to promote healthy living by choosing her profession as a Yoga instructor, this young woman is the first yoga instructor among the Nagas in Nagaland.

Meet Orentsani Kikon a fitness and yoga instructor, this woman is promoting a positive message to the people. When many are considering this art-form as a hindu philosophy, Orentsani is trying to change the perception by imparting this art as a way to live a healthy lifestyle and there is no harm to practice  and adopt this exercise as it will benefit the people on the whole.

In an exclusive interview with TNT-The Northeast Today, Orentsani Kikon talks about her journey…..

TNT: Can you tell us something about yourself.

My name is Orentsani Suzen Kikon from Yikhum village Nagaland,India, Daughter of Late.K.Arhomo Kikon. I am an independent, god fearing child who loves sports and other activities.

TNT: How did you come to know about Yoga and instantly became passionate about this art form.

After I pass out my 10+2 from Mumbai, I was going to join some airlines but then the turning point came into my life when one of my elder sister told me to take yoga teachers training course(TTC) and since I'm into sports and other activities I thought why shouldn't I? So it was in 2009 that I got my 1st TTC certificate and became a Professional Instructor and from then on my journey into yoga started.

TNT : Is Yoga popular in Nagaland

Well, majority is aware about it but due to laziness and religious beliefs people stop themselves from practicing this art form.

TNT : Which year did you start venturing into this profession( also mention something about your fitness studio)

So it was 2009 when I got my 1st TTC certificate and became a Professional Instructor and my journey started from there where I learned many courses and took internship in various places. It's almost going to be 9 years now that i am into this profession.

My studio, Orentsani Fitness Studio is all about connecting each other and focusing only on fitness and how to live a healthy life.In the studio I teach yoga, all forms of it like classical,hatha,power and basic Acro and Aqua yoga. I also include Dance(Bollywood and Hollywood), crossfit etc. It is not just one particular activity we perform in but many since my aim of staying healthy and fit is the main motto of my fitness studio.

TNT: Can you tell us about the recent feats you have achieved.

Recently I got a bronze medal for Nagaland  in a Yoga National Competition held at Sarupathar Assam 2017, it was from July 18th till 20th and looking forwad to many more championships.

TNT: Despite lack of popularity, how did you manage to popularise this art form in your state.

I held non-profit workshop every Monday and Saturday at 8:00/8:30 pm for at-least half an hour for those who have stress, anxiety, breathing problems, tension and etc.  And yes, I'm trying to popularise by keeping my concept and mind clear and spreading the awareness only through exercise.

TNT: Are you planning to make this art form popular to the entire Northeast Region. Can you tell us about your ideas

I'm trying and will always do my best to promote this art form. My plan is to link up with the government, and form a team and also to open an association in the future to make a Fitness Ashram in the region.

TNT: Lastly, your message on your journey to popularise this art form despite lack of acceptance by citizens of this Christian state.

My concept and teaching has got nothing to do with religion, every Northeast state has accepted this form of exercise. I was the only Naga girl who went and participated for the National yoga competition and brought back home a bronze medal whereas every state had more then 130 participants and atleast took 20 medal back with them.I hope we Naga's break the myth and stereotypes that this art form is a hindu philosophy but this art form is all about spreading the message of healthy living, love and peace.

"You cannot buy your health;you must earn it through healthy living"- Joel Fuhrman

TNT-The Northeast Today wishes Orentsani Kikon all the best for her future endeavours

(The writer can be contacted at natashadkhar11@gmail.com)