Mātātoa: the CrossFit comp blending fitness with te reo

“So we had the idea to create a Māori CrossFit competition to draw Māori into physical fitness and into the Māori language.” 

Eru, Heemi and Tipene Kapa-Kingi are triplets who grew up and shared everything together - even exercise and it was through their shared passion for CrossFit and te reo Māori that they created Mātātoa: the first Māori language CrossFit event in the country. 

CrossFit has become a bit of an international fitness sensation that millions of people enjoy, with rising numbers of Māori taking part and joining the fitness chain. Mātātoa looks at matching that demand for Crossfit events but also a need for more Māori language spaces, creating a space for those who enjoy both to do so. 

After last year, when all of the tickets to the event were sold out in under an hour, the triplets decided to do Mātātoa again to meet the ever-growing demand. At the core of it, these brothers are driven by the health of their language and the health of their people: 

“It’s making a space for Māori, showing that there are benefits to CrossFit and that this is something Māori can achieve!”

This is part of our reo Māori series, Ohinga, created by Mahi Tahi Media, with funding from Te Māngai Pāho. Stay tuned for a new episode every week.

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