I do most of my yoga classes online.
A typical day for me includes starting with a cup of coffee, playing with my cat, and going through the day’s appointments/classes/tasks. Then I head downstairs to my studio and prepare for class. Part of that is the standard studio prep: turning on lights, getting diffuser going with a morning bliss oil blend, making sure the floor is clean and the props are tidy. But then I also turn on my laptop, large screen monitor, hook up my camera and put on my wireless microphone. I log into my online studio, look at the roster of students for the upcoming class and when it’s time, I click “start.”
My online classes are live, where the students can see and hear me in real time, I can see and hear them too. I would have never guessed this is how I would teach when I began six years ago, but, honestly, I love it.
What is live online yoga?
More and more, yoga teachers are moving online to teach their classes. In the past, teachers were limited in how they could deliver classes to students online. You could record a video and upload to YouTube, Vimeo, or another platform. Then came SnapChat and IG Stories, which made it possible to deliver short live videos to those who wanted to take classes with you. Then Facebook jumped on board and YouTube now offers live streaming as well.
But this is still a one-way street of instruction. The student can see the teacher but the teacher cannot see the student. You have to rely on comments to give feedback.
Then platforms started to pop up that allow two-way access to classes. Websites like Vister or Namastream allow students and teachers to interact, see and hear one another, making the experience much more enjoyable and successful.
Here are the Benefits of Online Yoga
There are a ton of benefits to taking an online yoga class.
Here are just a few:
- You can take it anytime. There are teachers around the world who offer classes online so you can find one that is offering a class at a time that is convenient for you.
- You can decide how involved you want to be. Don’t want corrections or adjustments? Just turn off the camera feed and watch/listen to class without being seen or heard. This is also useful if you want to do your yoga class in your pajamas.
- You have the amenities of your own home. Need a post-class shower? Craving your favorite tea? Want to share your yoga-vibe with your IG pals? All this is available to you instantly since you are at home.
- Time management: you don’t have to worry about being late to class because of the traffic when you take a class at home. You also don’t have to factor in drive times to and from the studio as well as to work or your next appointment.
- If you suffer from social anxiety and studio classes make you feel triggered, this might be a great solution for you. NO need to walk through a strange door, or make small talk as you sit on your mat waiting for class to begin. You are in your safe space, and you decide how involved you want to be in the class.
What are the limitations of online yoga?
While there are lots of great benefits to online live yoga classes, there are a few limits too.
- The feed is still two-dimensional, so the teacher must sometimes get creative to explain poses and movements.
- Your experience can be limited by the size of your screen (meaning you can’t see the instructor well) and by the position of your space. What I mean is, if you want to be seen by the teacher, but your lighting is poor, or you have your camera set up to only see your face, it can be challenging to get the full experience. If the teacher cannot see you clearly they cannot give good cues for your specific needs.
- The class is also dependent on the quality of your and the teacher’s internet connection. If the connection is poor, the feed can freeze or disconnect. There can be delays which make it difficult to stay in sync with the flow that is being taught.
Online live yoga classes are right for you if:
- You like doing yoga at home but need more guidance than recorded videos provide
- You can’t find a local studio with classes that fit your schedule
- The idea of taking a class in a public space gives you anxiety or stress
- You are busy and don’t have time to search for a local studio, find times that work for you, or try out classes that you may or may not enjoy.
Where can I find online yoga?
I’m so glad you asked!
Online live yoga classes are being held on various platforms on the internet. The one I use is called Vister and here are the links to it as well as some others you might like: