If you're anything like me, your weekly fitness classes are a huge part of your routine. They keep me fit, healthy, and sane. Honestly, these classes help my mental health stay in tip-top shape just as much as they help my physical health.
Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, gyms and fitness studios are facing temporary closure. Yes, this means my personal routine is thrown a curveball, but this also means the wellness industry is one of many that is looking at unemployment and hardship. Do I miss my Monday spin class? Of course. But do the wellness professionals whose worlds were flipped upside down have a lot more to overcome than a slight change of routine? Absolutely. Thankfully, if anyone can prove the ultimate flexibility, it's the wellness industry.
I'm talking to wellness professionals to learn how COVID-19 has impacted their lives, as well as how they're adjusting how they teach to make quarantine a little healthier for all of us. Today, I chatted with Or Artzi, a fitness instructor in New York City.
What do you teach?
I am a group fitness instructor in Equinox NYC and on the Variis app. I've been at Equinox for the last three years, but I was teaching dance (and some fitness) back in Israel ever since I was 18 years old.
Why did you start teaching?
I was actually working in cybersecurity before I decided to move to New York and pursue a different career path. I am a dancer, always have been, so I moved from Israel to start a new life and make an old dream come true. Dance has been my passion, but I needed to pay my bills. I became a personal trainer, and one special client made me realize that this side job was what I was meant to do. Since then, I have been working full time in fitness, but still dancing for fun.
What is the current state of your studio?
At the moment I am just teaching online classes, hopefully, I will be back to teach live and record more classes soon.
What virtual classes are you offering? How can people find those classes?
You can find me on the Variis app and IGTV! For non-Equinox members, you can join live classes on Zoom and through my Instagram, @orartzi.
I offer mostly strength and conditioning classes, some barre, and my signature class "Work Of Art Cardio."
What is your biggest takeaway regarding COVID-19?
Community wins — never doubt that. But I also realized that in today's world, teaching skills are not enough. We have to learn about branding, social media, and much more to be successful.
What long-term effects do you see COVID-19 having on the wellness industry?
A lot of online classes and training are now possible, which is amazing! I am sure a lot of people will keep living on an online platform for a while even after coronavirus, even if it's just to train people from a different state who recently discovered you. The second long term effect I see is how many fit-pros took their first step to work on their own branding and social media. We've definitely become more creative!
What is one thing you want the world to know about the wellness industry, especially in light of COVID-19?
Keep taking classes for your physical and mental health, and keep supporting instructors the way they are supporting you.
If you are a wellness professional interested in sharing your story, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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