Why #yogaishealth and why yoga is not 'sport'
Why #yogaishealth and why yoga is not 'sport'
A big THANK YOU to everyone who has been working tirelessly behind the scenes of The Irish Yoga Federation since Yoga Studios across Ireland saw their doors close back in early October.
The Irish Yoga Federation is a collaboration of Yoga Teachers in Ireland united by the intention to promote the practise of Yoga as, “a means to improve physical health and mental wellbeing for people of all ages and fitness levels”.
Right now Yoga is considered by the Irish Government as a 'sport' rather than a tool to support health and mental wellbeing. As a result, under Level 3 Restrictions, Yoga Studios continue to remain closed.
Yoga has always been heavily misinterpreted by the general public as a sport and a form of acrobatics. Understandably so, as a result of the 'yoga-typical' marketing imagery of headstands and backbends in front of beautiful landscapes!
But Yoga studios and classes shouldn't have to remain closed because of this misinterpretation....
Yoga is an ancient wellness practise with the primary goal of balancing wellness in the mind and body.
This is achieved with breathing exercises, meditation exercises and gentle movements.
Yoga Teachers and studios across Ireland know that we can operate our classes in a safe and controlled manner under Level 3 restrictions. We can commit to deliver deliver gentle classes without fast or strong movement. We can deliver non movement sessions with mindfulness, meditation and pranayama exercises.
Under Level 3 gyms, hairdressers, retail and the hospitality industry are granted permission to open where they can operate safely. These are, in some cases luxury, non essential industries where
multiple people touch the same equipment (gyms/individual training)
people must be within 1 meter from eachother for a period of time in order to receive the service (hairdressing)
multiple people touch the same items without wipe down (retail)
multiple people touch food to prepare, plate and deliver to the client (restaurant)
multiple people are in the same water in one day (swimmings pools @ gyms and hotels)
Yoga Sessions can be operated in a safe way such that
noone is required at any stage to touch the same surface or equipment
noone is required at any stage to be within 1-2 meters of another person
noone is required to exert themselves in any way causing sweating/heavy breathing (sport is defined as physical exertion)
Yoga is not a luxury non necessary product or service such as some of the industries listed above.
Our industry promotes wellbeing in the body and mind.
Let's be clear.
We are not selling luxury products such as oils, candles, bubble baths, spa treatments, lotions and potions and cleverly using the marketing label 'wellness'.
We are out there in the community actually teaching people
Movement technique to encourage ongoing mobility
Movement techniques to encourage strength & flexibility
Our service or product has medical research demonstrating benefits such as
peace of mind
Let's forget the image of the headstand in front of a tropical sunset and start getting realistic.
Let's replace that image with
our clients who are ageing and losing more and more mobility in wrists
our clients who are losing muscle strength in their hips pre/post hip replacement
our clients who are at home with deteriorating mental health as need they need the weekly support and connection of the teacher to motivate them to meditate/breathe etc.
These are our clients.
And they need us more than a nice dinner out or a haircut.
This pandemic has seen Yoga teachers across Ireland put their businesses second and their passion for others first offering free & affordable Yoga classes.
We are not in the business of selling luxury items or services.
We are in the business of
helping people to take care of their mental health and physical wellbeing
What is more important?
In to order to create awareness around the topic, this Saturday November 28th, over 170 Yoga Teachers and studios across Ireland will offer free online Yoga Sessions.
Check out https://ifyt.org where you can find a collection of studies supporting mind-body wellness, how we plan to stay safe when we return to level 3 and a full list of more than 130 FREE online yoga classes this Saturday, Nov 28.
To support, BeWell will deliver a deeply relaxing online Yin Yoga Session online @ 8.15am-9.15am .
To register your interest email before 8pm Friday 27th Nov.
If Yoga has supported you, a family member or a friend with your physical or mental wellbeing please unite with us and show your support for our cause by using #yogaishealth on your social media. If you are not so active on your social media you can help by sharing/liking/commenting on any posts you see by any of the 170 Yoga teachers, studios and schools in Ireland related to
Thank you for your time,