Favorite Virtual Workouts at Home
Photography by Bliss Katherine
In this time of staying at home to self quarantine it's easy for routine to fall at the wayside, but I've noticed that I definitely feel better mentally and physically when I schedule some kind of movement into my day. If you are healthy and able to get outside for a walk in fresh air *while social distancing and staying 6 feet away from others* that is an ideal way to get your blood flowing and soak up your daily dose of Vitamin D, which is important for your immune system. I've found it motivating to schedule calls with my girlfriend who takes her dog for a walk at the same time as me so we can socialize while walking. In terms of at home workouts I've started seeing more fitness studios and instructors offering their classes for free by way of live streaming on Instagram, and find that tuning into a class with others is a motivating way to feel like I'm doing it with a group! So whether having a regular movement practice was a part of your routine before this quarantine took place, or whether its new to you, there is no better time then now to take advantage of the beautiful services being offered while at home.
Virtual Classes I'm Loving/Wanting to Try
A La Ligne Method by Katie Mckenzie I've been dying to try Katie's class but because we don't live in the same city (she is based in Vancouver, Canada) I haven't had the opportunity until this morning when she offered a free live streaming. I also got my mom in Vancouver and my sister in NYC to tune in so it was nice to feel like we were working out together. I don't have a ton of pilates experience so I really appreciated that Katie worked on the basics while bringing an awareness to posture, alignment, and breath. It was also a great opportunity to connect with where I was at emotionally.
Kundalini Practice by Marika Richoz Marika is a chef and Kundalini teacher also based out of Vancouver, Canada and has a beautiful way of teaching that warmly invites you in to learn. She is both calm in her presence and clear in her direction. I have hardly any experience with Kundalini but I am fascinated by the different breathing techniques and their positive effects on the parasympathetic nervous system (you can read more about it in this article 10 Reasons to Practice Kundalini).
SKY TING Yoga led by Kate Posch I was so excited when I saw that this NYC studio is offering free classes via live stream. What I loved about the class was that they had an instructor (Kate Posch) as well as two other instructors demo-ing each pose - one of whom was doing a modified easier version. Kate had a light energy and quirky sense of humor that I loved, and I saw there were about 900 other people tuned in!
Love Yoga based in Venice, Ca. They are live-streaming everyday at 9:30am + 4pm PST. I'm going to give this one a go tomorrow!
Melissa Wood Health Melissa offers a 7 day free trial of her at home workouts. Two of my girlfriends rave about the simplicity of efficiency of her workouts. I'm looking forward to testing out the free trial.
Benefits of Virtual Classes
- Access to classes in other cities that you might not normally be able to attend.
- Many of them are being offered for FREE.
- Its low maintenance - all you need is a yoga mat or towel to sit on.
- Its in the privacy and convenience of your own home. Sometimes it can feel intimidating to be the novice in a class, so this gives you the opportunity to learn and practice the basics of something new before trying it in a live class setting. You can literally do it in your sweatpants or pj's. No judgment here ;) Find a quiet space in your home or yard and make it your space to move. You don't need much (if you have a candle, Palo Santo, Sage, or a diffuser you can create a relaxing mood).
- Scheduling a workout helps to keep a routine in your day, not only are you "showing up" to a (virtual) event, you are showing up for yourself which is important for your mental health. With less excuses to skip a work out (you don't even have to leave your house) this can be an opportunity to commit and form a good habit.
- Releasing endorphins is good for your mental and physical health, combats stress, and physical activity is an important part of keeping your immune system strong.
- Think about how you want to feel when things return to normal. Instead of feeling sluggish and stiff wouldn't it be nice to come out of this time at home feeling confident, strong, and healthy, with a spring in your step because you know you've been taking care of yourself?
- You can go at your own pace. During these stressful times you may not feel up for a full, intense, workout and that is completely ok. Go slow, go at your own pace.
Listen to your body and do what feels right for you, and why not be a little adventurous and try out something you haven't done before? I always remind myself that practicing physical movement is an act of caring for my body and mind. Instead of moving to seek out physical results that I can see, I seek out the physical results of feeling grounded in my body, feeling strong, and clear minded.
*Id like to offer a gentle reminder not to push yourself physically if you feel your immune system is running low, instead gentle stretching and rest is key.*