YouTube Yoga Teacher Lesley Fightmaster Has Died
Lesley Fightmaster, the face of popular instructional yoga YouTube channel Fightmaster Yoga, died on Saturday, November 21, 2020, according to the description of a video uploaded soon after by her husband Duke. The video, titled “Hatha Yoga For Gratitude - Remembering Lesley Fightmaster,” is the most recent yoga video that Fightmaster had filmed but not yet posted. The website Famous Birthdays says she was 50 years old.
“I am saddened to share that my beautiful wife and your beloved yoga teacher passed away unexpectedly,” her husband wrote. “At this time, my children and I are surviving a tremendous amount of grief and pain.”
The posthumous video, the final in the Californian’s eight years on the platform, was intended to serve as a gratitude practice for Thanksgiving.
“I hope it will bring you some comfort in this difficult time,” Duke adds. He does not share the cause of death, but her Give In Kind page says it was "an unexpected departure."
During the past eight months, with gyms and fitness studios closed to slow the spread of Coronavirus, stir-crazy YouTube users have turned to online creators for instruction and inspiration. One popular online yogi, Yoga With Adriene, saw her monthly gained following and views skyrocket between February and April, according to Social Blade. Fightmaster also jumped in popularity, climbing to over 600,000 subscribers.
Her sudden passing has prompted an outpouring of love from her community.
“Devastating news,” one follower wrote on Instagram. “I was introduced to Lesley 3 years ago for a 90 day challenge. Her practices have been life changing, physically and mentally. My thoughts are with her family at this unbearable time.”
“‘Do yoga. Feel better’ will stay with me for the rest of my life thanks to Lesley,” a subscriber commented on YouTube. “This is gut-wrenching and my heart goes out to you, Duke. I wish you and your boys courage, love and peace to endure this terrible loss. Lesley helped me through some of the most difficult times in my life and I am grateful, so sad right now but truly grateful to have been able to practice with Fightmaster Yoga for all these years.”