Fitness businesses - including yoga studios - around the country are starting to open up and offer in-person classes. I totally respect every business’ individual decisions to do what they feel is best for their communities. But I am not planning to offer in-person classes anytime soon, and I wanted to take a moment and explain why. It’s not that I think it’s impossible to offer a safe in-person experience right now. It’s just that what it currently takes to do that, in my opinion, pretty much defeats the purpose of coming to my studios in the first place.
Practicing in my studios has always been about so much more than just what happens on the mat. My goal has always been to create an oasis, an escape. A place to take a break from life's worries and connect with yourself and your community. Leave your cares at the bottom of our stairs, remember? If we are having to wear masks and disinfect everything we touch every time we touch it and shrink class sizes and raise prices and take temperatures and make you enter one by one and keep you far away from each other and we won’t feel comfortable breathing too deeply because that’s how this damn thing is transmitted and if someone coughs or sneezes or sniffles everyone is going to be nervous for the rest of the class...what’s the point? That’s not what you come to my studios for. And it's not an experience I'm interested in offering.
And I hate to say it, but I don't think that it's going to be safe to offer in-studio classes for a LONG time. Like, until there's a viable vaccine or over-the-counter treatment or rapid in-home testing readily available to the public. The only reason we were able to keep the infection numbers under any kind of control is because we STAYED HOME. But until there's a vaccine or treatment or proper testing, as soon as we start going back out, cases will spike right back up again because there is nothing to stop that from happening! And
, sadly, my beloved home state of Texas is currently proving my point. We were one of the first states to "reopen" and are now having to shut back down because of the huge spike in cases we've seen over the last week.
And while I definitely plan to organize outdoor pop-up classes when feasible, the fact is that those are just not a consistently sustainable option. First of all, there's all the usual complications with these types of classes: weather, bugs, noise, unexpected crowds, etc. But now there's the added layer that COVID cases will continue to spike if we don't stay home consistently, so there will likely come a time in the near future where outdoor gatherings - even small ones - are forbidden again.
And yoga is a PRACTICE. To get the most out of it, you need to do it regularly. Consistently. So until COVID is truly under control, I think that in-person experiences should be viewed as periodic treats used to supplement a regular practice. Your online home practice can offer you consistency, no matter what is happening in the outside world or where you are. So let that anchor your practice. Until COVID is under control, you can just sprinkle in-person practices into the mix if and when you feel like it's safe.
So this is why, for the foreseeable future, I am choosing to focus on creating an awesome, at-home experience for you. Replicating our in-studio experience as much as possible. No, it won’t be the same, but in some ways that’s actually good! Think about it - no travel time, no hauling your stuff back and forth. You get to set up your practice exactly how YOU want it. Lights, temperature, music, even pets if you want them! And because we use Zoom, you still get to interact with your teachers and friends. Your teachers can still watch you and offer you cues and feedback. And to be completely honest, I've actually been enjoying practicing at home via Zoom a LOT more than I ever thought I would. It's like the best of both worlds - connection with my community within the comfort of my own home!
Is practicing online the same as coming to the studio? No, of course not. But until COVID is truly under control, I genuinely believe it is by far the best option when it comes to our yoga practice. So I hope I'll "see" you on the mat with me virtually very soon! If you have any questions about practicing online with me, feel free to drop me a line. Or you can check out pricing and schedule here.