walk good [wôk goŏd]
“An expression used to wish good fortune and a good trip on departing travelers.” — Jamaican Patwah
“To walk in good stride, to go into your day with good vibrations, to be safe.” — Ivy Coco Maurice
Walk good is more than the name of an organization. More than a Jamaican expression passed on by older generations. It’s a way of living and something Etienne Maurice, Ivy Coco Maurice and Marley Ralph aim to embody each and every day.
Together they lead WalkGood LA, a non-profit organization dedicated to connecting people. Their mission is to foster community as a means of addressing racial equity and helping to deal with the trauma that people of color in the USA have experienced. They host weekly yoga sessions, runs and hikes, painting sessions and self-defense classes. But whatever the activity, the goal is always about coming together to have some fun.
And it's this community-focused energy that inspired us to reach out to the WalkGood LA to ask if they’d be willing to help launch the new Cloudnova Form – which is designed to be a versatile, energy-igniting option that blends performance tech with an easygoing and easy-to-match style. They were up to the task, as you can see in the video above.
WalkGood LA started two years ago as in response to the killings of Black people at the hands of police. Since then, it has developed into a multifaceted, feel-good community with hundreds of members since being.
“During 2020, we went through a lot of difficult moments,” says Marley Ralph. “Instead of trying to ignore those moments, we really brought them to the forefront. We spoke about what was going on in our world and how we were able to move through it. During COVID and [the] Black Lives Matter [protests], community reminded me there was another day to work for, move for and to get through. Community continuously reminds me that I'm not alone. That there are people out there going through the same things I am. If we can’t be vulnerable about them, then we're shutting ourselves off from a group that needs us like we need them. Getting into WalkGood and seeing people smiling and enjoying themselves is always a fresh reminder that there are people out there who want to live fully and want to live with me. And I want to live with them.
“We're just all contributing to this life. It's so important to have a community that you can experience it with on a joyful scale.” - Marley Ralph
Marley Ralph is the group’s director of health and wellness. Her cousin Ivy Coco Maurice handles operations as the vice president and Etienne Maurice, Ivy’s brother, is the founder and president.
“Being able to work with my family and being so rooted in love, in our culture, that brings me joy. WalkGood is an expression that our grandmother taught us. So being able to be our grandmother's wildest dreams and serve our community, knowing that we are being good to all that we can – that is what truly brings me joy,” says Ivy.
“Our parents always told us when they're not there, all we're going to have is each other. I took that to heart,” adds Etienne Maurice.
“Community is the ability to be with people and show love. Show compassion. Show joy. It’s something that we need now more than ever.” - Etienne Maurice
“Something I think about often is the legacy that we leave behind. That's the founding principle behind everything we do as WalkGood. It’s based on family and how we treat each other. Being able to welcome people into your family is important. We need it. I don’t know where I'd be if I didn't have my sister and my cousin. We wouldn't be WalkGood if we didn't have each other,” says Etienne.
This welcoming spirit has seen WalkGood be embraced by many in Los Angeles – which has benefitted everybody involved. And there’s no end in sight.
“What started as 20 people in the park doing yoga has now grown to nearly 200 people in the park. I love working out as a group because you are held accountable by somebody. Having that in anything that you do is important because they’ll tell you if you need to finish stronger or if you did a great job. Sometimes we need reinforcement from somebody other than ourselves. When you're working out in a group, people bring different things. Some people bring love, some laughter and some bring jokes or good humor. That's what makes working out as a collective better than just working out as an individual,” says Ivy.
“Energy is what makes the experience great – everybody offers different perspectives, lifestyles and energies. It creates an amazing experience.” - Ivy Coco Maurice