Instagram Yoga Tips

A friend called me last night frustrated that she still could not participate in an Instagram yoga class after several attempts. Many of us need the inspiration and motivation of a teacher in order to continue practicing while Nashville is under the stay at home order. Thankfully many local studios are offering online classes (see previous post) and Instagram is a great resource for finding free or donation yoga classes. However there are a few things you may need to know (as my friend and I discovered) in order to participate in these classes. Below is a list of things that we discovered that may help you too!

1. USE YOUR PHONE

On my first attempt to do an Instagram yoga class I thought my laptop would be a better choice to see the teacher clearly. You can access Instagram on a desktop so naturally that’s where I headed. Unfortunately you can’t access all the features on a desktop. To participate in a live instagram yoga class, I had to use my Iphone.

Update 5/19/20

The latest update now allows you to watch IGTV (Instagram TV) videos on your desktop! Check out all the great classes from Inner Light Yoga‘s channel.

2. UPDATE YOUR APP

This wasn’t the first time my friend had contacted me so I was at a bit of a loss that she was still having difficulties. She sent me a screenshot and I noticed it didn’t look like mine. I suggested she update her app and an hour later she had attended her first Instagram yoga class! 

3. FOLLOW AND CLICK

Okay, you are using your phone and your app is up to date. It’s time to attend your first live yoga class. First, make sure you are following the studio whose class you want to attend. A few minutes before it’s time for the class to start, open up your Instagram app and a notification should appear that the studio has started a live event. Click the notification and away you go! If the notification does not appear go to the studio’s profile page, tap their profile photo. You should also see a line of profile photos across the top of your home page. Any active live streams will be indicated.

4. PRACTICE FOR 24 HOURS

Can’t make the scheduled class time? Most of the yoga teachers I follow are opting to make their live videos available for 24 hours. If you miss the class, within the next 24 hours, head to their profile page, click the profile photo and select “watch live video.” If  necessary you can fast forward or rewind the video using your finger on the screen to drag right (FFW) or left (RWD).

Update 5/19/20

Live stream videos are still available after the scheduled time but you’ll find them in a new place. Once the class has ended the yoga studio or teacher has the option to add them to their IGTV where they’ll now live for longer than 24 hours. Go to the profile page and tap the IGTV icon. Check out all these great classes on YogaSoulNashville’s channel!

5. REMOVE THE COMMENTS

Although it is nice to thank your teachers and say hello at the beginning of a class, comments in the chat box can be distracting and obstruct your view especially during a meditation or class with many floor postures. I discovered a little trick to help. Take your finger and run it down the left hand side of the comments/chat box. This should move any unpinned comments out of the way.

6. USE A SCREEN

If you’re like me and don’t have perfect vision the small phone screen can be difficult to see. I also usually take my glasses off when I do yoga. If you’re an experienced yogi and have a good teacher, the voice instructions might be enough. However, just like during an in-person class, seeing a posture is sometimes necessary and especially important for beginners. I purchased an HDMI adapter for my Iphone and hooked up my phone to a larger screen. This not only gives me a larger picture but allows me to place the second phone screen in a different location (usually on the floor) so I can see the teacher in a variety of poses.

We’re all in this together!

If this post has been helpful or if you have any tips of your own, please let me know! Having access to online yoga classes while sheltering in place helps me stay physically and mentally healthy. Let me know if there is anything I can do to help you start or keep up your yoga practice.

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