The health and wellness industry has changed incredibly over the past few months. Gyms, Yoga Studios and Health Centers have all closed due to social distancing. So what impact has this had on the community, personal trainers and yoga teachers?
Yoga has always been a physical and hands-on practices so not being able to meet and do 1-2-1 or group classes, has defiantly been a challenge to the community. Teachers need to be able to see a students physical posture and alignment in order to guide them and improve their practice, not to mention making sure they are safe. However, as most yoga teachers are self employed, they have had to adapt to the lockdown measures (like all small businesses). Offering free online classes through social media platforms and small online classes on Zoom. While this is a great alternative and positive way to support people in isolation, it has created a big shift in the industry from face-to-face to online.
Why is Yoga good for you in Lockdown?
Not only have studies suggested that yoga is a safe and effective way to increase physical activity, especially strength, flexibility and balance. There's also some evidence that regular yoga practice is beneficial for people with high blood pressure, heart disease, aches and pains – including lower back pain – depression and stress. So it is the perfect practice to do during these economical challenging times.
Here are some of the reasons to practice yoga in Lockdown:
increased muscle strength and tone.
improved respiration, energy and vitality.
maintaining a balanced metabolism.
cardio and circulatory health.
improved athletic performance.
protection from injury
How how has Yoga evolved in Lockdown?
As people can't meet up in person, they have more face time online. We are doing all activities in the same place. We are eating, working, sleeping and exercising in the same space. This means social media platforms have thrived as the only way we have to connect and communicate with each other is online. Offering classes online has been able to support those in isolation, that might feel lonely, which can improve individuals metal health and support them during this difficult time.
But what about the negative impact it has? Below is a list of the pros and cons to yoga in Lockdown:
Teacher have a wider audience and demographic, across the globe rather then just the local studio. This means they can offer their service to more people.
More flexible timetable for teachers and students, As teachers are able to decided what kind of classes they want to do, what time they want to do the class. Students can join class at any time, that fits into their personal schedule. Rather then be at the mercy at the yoga studio.
Students have more accessibility to join a class, those that might not feel comfortable going to a gym or yoga studios can feel more confident doing online classes.
Supporting students health and wellbeing during the time of isolation, offering online classes can encourage a positive practice throughout the day. Which will ultimately lift their mood, immune system and physical activity.
Online teaching is a over saturated market with multiple platforms like YouTube, Instagram and Zoom offering classes. Which means it can be a very competitive space for yoga teachers. And those that already have a large online following are at a advantage.
There has been a influx of free yoga classes which is a great offering, however yoga teachers are self employed which means they are not getting paid for their service which can devalue the industry.
Yoga teachers can't see the students so this can hindered personal development and guidance. Teaching online is essentially a teacher moving in front of a screen device. So they can't see the students, read the room or get feedback to adapt the speed of the class. So the safety and quality of the class can be questionable.
Loosing the sense of community, students and teachers both enjoy the community that yoga can bring when practising in a group or at a studio. This sense of community can be really important to some, and the lose of connection with others might really impact their life in a negative way. As studios offer a community spirit that brings people together in a safe environment.
The big question is now, how will this transpire?! From a community practice to online service, how will we come out of Lockdown in a way that supports the health and wellness industry.
Written by @activationyogagirl