Where To Do Online Yoga Classes in Columbus
“We need yoga more than ever,” notes displaced college student, Vahni Kurra, “I miss going to class so much!”
Columbus-area yoga studios are rising to the challenge of keeping their students practicing during this time of unprecedented requests of everyone to remain at home.
“We are better and stronger in community with one another, and we do not view other studios as competition,” says Trisha Hoffman Drewyor of Namaste in Love. “I started talking with other yoga studio owners about how to give our communities more access to yoga during this time of high need.”
The owners of Align Power Yoga, Heartfelt Yoga, Kula Yoga and Wellness, Modo Yoga, Namaste in Love, and Rise Yoga have joined forces to help each other and their students, and they invite other studios to share ideas and postings of online videos.
“Our goal has always been to foster more people doing yoga,” says Chad Underwood of Modo Yoga, “I know there’s a number of owners, including myself, that don’t look at each other as competitors, we’re all just trying to do good work here in Columbus and bring more people to the power of the practice in our own individual ways.”
The rising threat of the novel Coronavirus in March 2020, led to more and more extra-ordinary measures. It began with the postponement of yoga events at the Arnold 2020’s Expo. Some yoga studios shuttered early in the Corvid 19 crisis. Many yoga studios tried to comply with Ohio Department of Health (ODH) recommendations by distancing students with reduced class sizes and putting extra cleaning measures in place. Finally, Governor DeWine ordered yoga studios together with gyms and other gathering places close on March 17, 2020.
Many newer yoga studios in Columbus such as Zen Yoga, Tiger Yoga and Align Power Yoga were just getting rolling, when the ODH recommended closing the studios. Also, many yoga teachers’ finances were already reeling from income lost from their hospitality jobs following cancellation of the Arnold 2020 Expo and then closure of bars and restaurants in Ohio to all but carry out business at the end of Sunday, March 15, 2020. In addition, some yoga teachers are bodyworkers and cannot work online. Now many Columbus yoga folks are now putting their talents online.
Some yoga studios in Columbus such as Elizabeth Miller’s Viniyoga studio Reden Yoga and Seven Studios owned by Julie Wilkes have already had online options for years, but starting with the discouragement of group classes, most Columbus studios began creating programs on a variety of platforms such as Zoom and Instagram. From tiny places such as Cherished Soul to Columbus’ oldest studio, Yoga On High, more and more classes are appearing daily. Also, individual teachers such as Liz Baldridge and Joannie Delph have also begun leading meditations, yin yoga, and other yoga classes on their Facebook pages. Most of the online classes from studios are free or at very reduced rates compared to usual yoga classes. Some individual teachers suggest pay-what-you-want via Venmo or other platforms.
During this time of crisis and generosity, many yoga studios such as GIVE and Modo are putting memberships on pause. Some such as Heartfelt are offering reduced class passes for future use. The owners of GoYoga not only are offering reduced class passes but also encouraging their students to buy gift cards and certificates to support other local small businesses. YMCA of Central Ohio is also offering free virtual classes to members.
Columbus’ own Youth Yoga Project is posting content daily on their YouTube Channel. They have age-specific yoga practices, such as good for grades 6 and up, as well as mindfulness exercises for kids.
Trisha Hoffman Drewyor of Namaste in Love has a few tips on making a practice space at home. Many teachers are getting creative with using books, mason jars and other items as home props, too.
Individual teachers offering online yoga classes, sessions or even private lessons online:
“We are going to get through this,” says Chad Underwood of Modo Yoga. “No matter how this unfolds, please know that the kindness and goodness of people does not go unnoticed. It is important for all of us to do whatever we can to help out our communities.”