our history.

nine decades of service

The Baptiste Foundation is the 501c3 non-profit organization fulfilling the seed planted nine decades ago by Walt and Magana Baptiste, Baron Baptiste’s parents. The seed grew to the advanced vision it is today through the collaboration of Baron Baptiste, the Baptiste Institute, and the global Baptiste community. 

​The origin of the Baptiste Foundation was established with Walt and Magana Baptiste’s vision for youth in the 1930’s. Walt said, “Allow youth the inspiration and the advantage of expressing their tremendous energies into the healthy desirable channels, and

“Place the seed in the proper nourishing soil and it grows.”
- Walt Baptiste (1917-2001)

always, they will respond.” His influence spread to service men and women in San Francisco, where he directed them to health and fitness for clarity and strength. People traveled from all over the Bay Area to receive the quality education and guidance that he offered. He was committed to introducing the work of yoga and health as practical for everyone in daily life. 

Walt Baptiste was recognized as a leader and pioneer and traveled to the East in his early twenties. He was initially influenced by his uncle, who had an interest in Eastern teachings and philosophy. Walt was interested in the physical body, it's potential and possibilities, and how the body connects to the mind. Both Walt and his uncle supported bringing the body/mind connection into the public eye as a way of living. 
 
Walt’s programs were exemplary of his own physical advancement and studentship. He surrounded himself with influencers in health and wellness and learned from his predecessors; fitness educators of the early 1900’s: Paul Bragg, Bernard McFadden, and Arnold Ehret. Ultimately, Walt initiated Eastern practices of meditation and yoga as exercise into the physical culture and fitness realms, making it more accessible to all people. This was a new creation and collaboration of ideas. 

 

The spark that started in the 1930’s lives and expands today in the Foundation’s vision of what is possible in the realm of social change.

For over twenty years, Walt and Magana's son, Baron Baptiste has been revolutionizing the accessibility of the practices and techniques of yoga for the modern world. Through the years his writings, workshops, boot camps, and yoga teacher training-model (The Baptiste Institute) have transformed people's quality of life. A result of people having their lives transformed was their innate desire to bring this work to everyone, everywhere. 

In 2015, The Baptiste Foundation was formed to create structures and programs that generate transformation, connection, and healing amongst marginalized populations and dissolve that which has kept humanity divided for centuries.