By: Courtney Ciandella
A Message to Our Yogis:
We sacrificed our routines for the last 17 months to adapt to the “new normal” brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. We uprooted our entire lives, altering our physical worlds to operate through a computer screen to keep some normalcy in our day-to-day. As yogis, we were thankful for the option to continue our practice virtually as yoga became more of a need than ever before. Not only did our bodies crave movement while confined to our living rooms for months, but the mental benefits of the practice were a necessity to our well-being.
Thankfully, through our virtual spaces (hello, Zoom!), the yoga community could come together during a time of isolation and fear. Students could still practice from the comfort of their homes, and teachers could make some connections with their classes from afar. Knowing that nothing could disrupt us from our yoga journey was reassuring and provided peace of mind. But as life starts to shift back to pre-Covid days, it’s time to step out of our virtual bubbles and get back into the studio!
We get it - the convenience and ease of practicing at home made our routines feel effortless. But the benefits of practicing in-studio are far more significant than the virtual experience we have gotten used to. The list goes on, but here are just some of the benefits of attending classes in person.
The Instructor Can Correct Your Form
One of the main benefits of practicing in person is that the instructor can correct your form in each posture. Practicing at home was a great substitute when studios were forced to close during the lockdown, but students ran the risk of injury or simply getting in the habit of flowing through poses incorrectly. While in a studio, teachers can give individual attention to their students through verbal cues and (if you’re comfortable) hands-on adjustments.
You Face Fewer Distractions
For many of us, finding a quiet place to roll out our yoga mats felt nearly impossible while being quarantined with our families. And even when we did, our practices usually got hijacked by our fur babies, hunger pains, or random compulsions to do chores (that laundry pile wasn’t going to fold itself!). With in-person instruction, you face fewer distractions and are more focused on your practice. Upon entering the studio, you have the opportunity to dedicate the hour to yourself, connecting with your mind and body - no interruptions.
You Feel Energy From Other Students
Those accustomed to practicing in-studio pre-pandemic felt the major shift when classes moved to virtual. You were used to interacting with other students face-to-face before and after classes instead of lonely virtual waiting rooms within Zoom sessions. You could instantly feel the energy emitting off each other upon entering the room, which carried throughout your practice. Being in the presence of others yearning for the benefits of yoga just like you makes the class that much more rewarding.
You Connect With Your Teachers
Yes, the instructors are there as guides and can help us navigate through postures properly, but we also form unexpected bonds with them. Sharing the same physical space allows you to connect with your teachers, in turn elevating the effects of your practice. The sound of the teacher’s voice or their dharma talk can draw you deeper into the practice. Or their instruction could unleash an emotional release you didn’t see coming. (Spoiler: this tends to happen the most when we’re all in the same room.)
Be in the Know About Upcoming Events/Classes
During the statewide mandated shutdowns, there weren’t many activities for people to look forward to. But as things are slowly opening up, that is beginning to change. Studios (like us!) are adding more classes to their schedules, organizing more opportunities for yogis to come together for in-person workshops and events. So, by regularly showing up for classes at the studio, you can be in the know about upcoming events and schedule updates. You can get excited about social gatherings and have an excuse to get out of the house a little bit more. And if you’re not ready just yet, that’s okay too. Work on getting gradually more comfortable one class at a time.
See you on the mat!