When I tell people that I run an online yoga course they often exclaim something like “cool! I didn’t know you could do that!”. They then bombard me with a series of questions like, “But how does that actually work? Don’t you need to be able to see the students if you’re going to be teaching them? How can you give adjustments or tell if they are doing the pose the right way?” An online yoga course can’t replace the attention or personal connection with finding an instructor that you can meet with face to face. Yet, there are a lot of benefits to signing up for an online yoga course. An online course can be a good option for you if:
1. You’re sick
If you’re reading this blog you’re probably living with a chronic illness. Online classes give you the flexibility to do the lesson when you are feeling up to it. And you don’t have to waste energy or funds on getting to and from the class. If you have a flare-up, you can just do the class the next day!
2. You live in a remote location/the type of class you want isn’t available in your area
If you live in a big city, the idea of living in a place without a yoga studio might seem crazy. In London, a new yoga studio seems to pop up every week! But many smaller cities and towns have limited if any options for yoga. The chances that these studios have a class that caters to people living with a chronic illness is small. Taking a class online gives you access to different teachers who come from many teaching backgrounds. You’re much more likely to find a class that suits your needs and an instructor that understands your unique challenges.
3. You don’t want to undo the relaxation of yoga with the stress of travel
Driving, or navigating public transportation systems can be stressful. Especially if you’re running on limited energy to begin with. When I finish a yoga session I feel relaxed and peaceful. Nothing like jumping on the tube at rush hour to zap away that sense of calm. Practicing at home with the help of an online yoga video lets you keep a sense of serenity for hours after the class finishes. In turn, this well help you in cultivating peacefulness next time you have to get on the underground!
4. You can practice whenever is convenient for you
There’s no need to miss a class if you are taking an online course. If something unexpected comes up, or you are having a bad day, you can practice whenever it is convenient for you. When I was teaching my course for chronic illness in-person, I hated that students had to miss out on the classes if they had a flare up, an exam, or just needed a day off. An online course means that you can go at your own pace without missing out on a lesson.
5. You can go at your own pace.
Building on the last point, you can do the lessons at a time that works for you. You can also do each individual class at your own pace. If you need to pause the video and come back to it later, or just skip straight to savasana, you can do that. You can also split the video into two or three parts, stop to grab some pillows to make a pose more comfortable for you, or even to go to the bathroom!
While the personal attention from an in-person yoga class is great, the flexibility and benefits of taking a course online, might make it a better option for some students, especially those living with a chronic illness! If you’re looking for the in between, some teachers (myself included) are now offering private lessons over Skype! This allows you to get the personal attention of the teacher without having to travel to a studio. Find out more here.
What do you think? Do you prefer to practice online, or in the studio?