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This is a post from our (always amazing) Mindbody community.
I remember when I took my first trigger-point therapy (TPT) yoga class. The instructor, Annika, combined these hard but-seriously-amazing lacrosse balls with hot yoga to deliver the most therapeutic class I’ve ever taken. I remember seeing her at the studio, pouring over an anatomy book, eager to learn more so she could deliver the best class. I consistently went whenever my schedule would allow it, and did so until I relocated. I still think about how amazing the TPT was for my left hip.
The same goes for when I took what my home studio dubbed a “Meg class.” Meg, the instructor, taught the most difficult hot vinyasa yoga class I’ve ever taken. Not because of how advanced the poses were, but because she knew how to combine quick movement and strength-based poses to obtain optimal exertion. This was no doubt due to her years of expertise in yoga, personal training and massage therapy. I knew when I went to her class, it was going to be sweaty, thoughtfully-sequenced, and hard.
As a student, I never really thought about what it was like to be a teacher. I simply thought of myself and my experience. My mind never went to the preparation they must have done to deliver such a killer class. I never thought about how this was their livelihood and how they pay their bills. Not until I became a teacher myself did I think about the anxiety they must have felt, commanding 30 students for an hour at a time. Or how many emotions they absorbed while holding space for me to feel mine.
The wellness industry is experiencing a huge hit, and its instructors are at the center of those losses. Their hours have been cut greatly, and if they are teaching virtual classes, oftentimes they are at a lower rate than in-person. Many of their other revenue streams (in-person private sessions, yoga retreats, local business collaborations) are nonexistent for the foreseeable future.
Regardless of how intense (Meg) or yogic (Annika) your favorite teachers may seem – they are human – and they are likely experiencing the same stressors you are. They’ve given their heart and soul to their work, and a lot of that work has been taken away. Much like we need our boss and coworkers to give us positive reinforcement and support, fitness instructors need to know they still matter to the communities they’ve dedicated their lives to. A simple DM or text will go a long way. Let them know just how much you loved their core series, or how they helped you achieve your first pullup. The recognition will help fuel them to get through these hard times.
If you’re feeling called to do more, there are many options to support your favorite instructors. If they are offering private virtual sessions, purchase those and take them (what else are you going to do with your Saturday?). If they are offering virtual classes through a studio or gym, take them (and invite your friends)! And if any of their offerings are free, please consider donating directly to the instructor via Venmo or another money-sharing app. They work hard to bring you quality content that you can enjoy through the screen, and they deserve to be compensated for their work.
If you can’t donate, there are other ways to help. Whenever you see them promoting their offerings online, share them. When you take their class, share it. When you see another friend post about their offerings, share that! Write them a review on the Mindbody app. Text a screenshot of the schedule to your friends. Give them a recommendation on LinkedIn. Tag them and @mindbody on Instagram, and we can help spread the word as well! All these actions say, “Thank you.”
Find out how you can show support for your favorite studios here.
Anything helps, and remember—we are all in this together.
I wonder how my two former teachers are doing. I think I’ll reach out. Will you?
Things are weird. Times are changing. It seems like just when we’re starting to get a grip, there’s another surprise. When it comes to beauty, we've had to adapt on our own due to salon closures, keep an eye on preparations and protocol changes during those closures, try to know what we’re doing before booking an appointment once they reopened, and maybe even brave the journey back to the salon. Whether you live in a place where salons are open, you’ve experienced a second shutdown, or you straight up haven’t had a haircut since March, we can all probably agree that we’re expecting some differences in the salon and spa world thanks to COVID.
We wanted to gauge how everyone is thinking and feeling about all this, so we put out a poll on our Instagram, asking you all what you expect from beauty salons right now.
Here’s what you had to say...
53% of you have returned to the hair salon by now, while 47% of you have not. This makes sense, because every area of the country is different when it comes to cases, closures, and mandates, and every person is different when it comes to risk and safety.
While many hair salons have begun operating outdoors due to government regulations, 58% of you said you’re fine with getting your haircut indoors, while the other 42% are more comfortable keeping it outside.
58% of you said you’d rather go to your hair salon than have your stylist come to you. I get it, home is a safe space, probably shouldn’t let any outsiders in.
69% of you said you’re “totally!” going to tip more for services once you start receiving them again. During this time without our stylists and aestheticians, I think we all realized how much we need them and appreciate them, and many of us are willing to show them a little extra gratitude to make up for the time we spent apart.
But, most of you aren’t. 56% of you said you have not cut or colored your own or a friend’s hair, because it was too risky, while the other 44% just “had to!”
Only 29% of you have returned to nail salons, while the rest are sticking to at-home manicures. Maybe we’re all just getting really good at it? But probably, it’s because a lot of them are still closed down, or because it’s a little more difficult to get a pedicure outdoors (we need our massage chairs!).
Our last poll question asked about what differences you’ve all noticed when heading back to the salon, and you all had a lot to say...
It’s a beautiful thing to see how the salon and spa community has come together, taken precautions, and adjustments, all so they can continue to help us look and feel our best. If you haven’t spoken to your stylist lately (or even if you have), don’t forget to shoot them a thank you and let them know you appreciate them.