Article Archive > Member Update: Enhanced COVID-19 Resources

Member Update: Enhanced COVID-19 Resources

March 14, 2020

Dear Member,

Globally, we all have a watchful eye on the growing spread and changing implications of the outbreak of the novel coronavirus and the disease it causes, COVID-19. Yoga Alliance continues to monitor this situation closely, and our highest priority and concern are for the health and safety of our members and the broader yoga community—and your local communities—as we deal with this increasing health emergency.

Many of you have shared with us that you are facing tough decisions—do you cancel or postpone your active or upcoming teacher training programs? Do you reduce the number of students you allow in your classes to increase social distancing? Do you empower your teachers to ask—or do you as a teacher ask—students to leave if they show symptoms of a virus? Do you move away from natural cleaning agents to a bleach-based disinfectant? How do you educate responsibly without fueling unnecessary fear?

It is our goal to support you in your profession of yoga training and yoga teaching in an effort to foster high quality, safe, accessible, and equitable yoga. The experience of this challenging time continues to remind me of two principles that I know to be so central to this community: first, that we are all—truly and unequivocally—intertwined, and second, that for this reason and so many others, there is immeasurable benefit to a committed yoga practice. Your work and the service you offer to your community are more important than ever in these moments—thank you. We are honored to support you.

Thank you to the many members who shared with us tips as well as suggestions for resources that they would find helpful. We have added many of them to the COVID-19 resources page created last week for you to leverage as you move forward with some of these tough decisions. We will continue to develop and source more resources as this situation unfolds; for example, we have created a temporary provision for our current RYS programs to offer contact hours in a virtual format now until April 13 and will be re-assessing this on a weekly basis. RYS members have received a separate email from us with details about this provision; you can learn more about this in that email as well as on Tuesday, March 17 during one of two Facebook Live sessions (10am or 6pm ET).

My hope is that you find this useful. Please continue to send us suggestions for resources that would be helpful to you in this moment as well as the actions you are taking in your own communities; we will share both with the broader community. As always, we can be reached at

Our thoughts are with all of you across the globe as we work to adapt to the changing circumstances we face as a global community. Thank you for the refuge and peace you offer your communities.

Yours In Yoga,

Shannon Photo and Signature



Overall Information on COVID-19

  • We created a COVID-19 resource page on our website, which we first shared with you last week in a special member communication, with information for yoga schools, studios, and teachers, compiled from two credible sources, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
  • With respect to contingency planning, the WHO developed a sample response matrix framework based on transmission scenarios that you can adopt for your region.
  • Per member input, we’ve updated the suggested steps to help reduce or prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses like COVID-19, including new tips such as:
    • Changing to disinfectant cleaning supplies
    • Increasing the frequency of studio cleaning
    • Limiting or reducing the use of props and hands-on assists
    • Limiting or reducing the number of students per class to allow for more space between mats
  • As a reminder, there are three flyers for download for the community’s use on cough-and-sneeze etiquette, on washing hands, and on feeling under the weather.

Online Learning Best Practices

The Importance of Self-Care and Empowerment

  • Practice self-care! You are the vehicle of self-care for so many. Take care of yourself by maintaining your own yoga practice, including asana, pranayama, and dhyana.
  • Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, eat nutritious foods, stay hydrated, and manage your stress.
  • Feel empowered to ask students of yours to leave the room if they show symptoms of sickness, including coughing and sneezing.
  • Consider not using hands-on assists, and perhaps modify your teaching to not incorporate the use of communal props.

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