According to the World Health Organisation Coronavirus includes a large family of viruses ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Severe Acute Respiratory Disease (SARS). Novel coronavirus is a new strain that presents signs such as respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death (WHO, 2020).
With many health experts advising on steps to take on preventing the spread of coronavirus I thought I would take the opportunity to address some concerns you might have about having a massage or attending your regular yoga class.
Is it safe to still have a massage or attend yoga?The short answer is nobody knows.
The long answer is that health advice is suggesting coronavirus spreads when someone with the virus sneezes or coughs on you. Advice from the Queensland Health website also says “You could also catch the virus if they have coughed or sneezed onto a surface (like a door handle) that you touch, getting the droplets on your hands and then transferring them to your mouth, nose or eyes when you touch your face or eat”.
Therefore safe to assume it is possible that you could get coronavirus if you are in the presence of someone who has the virus.
But how do we know if someone has the virus? We probably won’t know.
In my mind the best way to keep massage and yoga safe for you and others is to keep up or adopt practices that reduce the risk of spreading the virus.
Regularly washing your hands seems to be the number one piece of advice offered by many global experts on preventing the spread of coronavirus.
Other advice suggests that leading a healthy lifestyle, exercising, eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep and reducing stress will support preventing getting sick and not just from Coronavirus. Queensland Health offers this sound advice on staying well and also other advise for preventing the spread of coronavirus on their website.
I love that Queensland Health offer the above advice for staying healthy because there is plenty of research to suggest living a healthy lifestyle is in fact a great preventative for well staying healthy.
In the past, I have read some great scientifically researched articles about boosting the immune system too. Harvard health lists all the above-mentioned lifestyle habits as methods for bolstering your immune system as well as suggests minimising alcohol, not smoking, maintaining health weight and basic hygiene practices.
This advice to me seems to support the fact that if you are already undertaking practices to support your health than you should continue doing them. Yoga and Massage are both activities that support your health and if you are receiving benefit from them, then don’t stop until we get further evidence to suggest otherwise.
With that I want to assure you that I am doing plenty to reduce risks of the spread of coronavirus as much as possible with information we are given by those same health authorities.
Here’s what I am doing to reduce the risks at Mindful Living MattersMany of the methods for reducing the risks suggested from credible sources are observations I already had adopted as general hygiene practices anyway however Queensland Health authorities and my registration bodies have issued some updated information that I plan on including:
- Washing hand regularly – before and after treatments for massage
- Providing hand sanitizer for clients to use
- Providing antibacterial wipes
- Keeping plenty of soap on hand for clients to use if they need
- Ensuring equipment (yoga and massage) is cleaned after every client
- Washing all linen in detergent, hot water and regularly using laundry sanitizer
- Putting up gentle reminders about reducing the risks
Here’s what you can do to reduce the risksFirst and foremost do not panic. Coronavirus does pose risks to your health along with everyone else around you. Know that you are not alone in this and talk about it is you are worried however I suggest using this opportunity to activate your discernment energies and learn what is sensationalism in the media and what information is to be trusted.
From there I would greatly appreciate if:
- You are unwell please stay at home and seek medical advice
- You know the symptoms – visit the Queensland Health website for up to date information
- Wash your hands regularly
- Cover your cough and sneezes and use tissues
- Use the hand sanitizer and antibacterial wipes supplied
- Wipe down yoga equipment you have borrowed at classes
- Bring your own equipment whenever possible
- Use a towel or protective barrier on bolsters you borrow in classes
- Be patient and show kindness to others
- AND finally keep looking after yourself – keep up with your healthy lifestyle practices and adopt any new ones that will boost your immune system.
In this climate it is even more important that we take care of our mental wellbeing. This might mean adopting self-care practices where we can feel safest. Perhaps this is in comfort of your own home, maybe it’s in the company of others or maybe it’s just about burying your head in the sand and pretending it’s not happening.
While I am inclined to practice the latter, I am also well aware of the responsibility that I have to my immediate family and to YOU my wider family.
Taking care of your mental wellbeing is imperative to staying healthy. I understand that if you cannot look after your mental health you are less likely to be looking after your physical health. So I plan to continue offering my massage, yoga and meditation services to the public. I am definitely looking at alternatives for those of you who wish to practice at home but for those that still wish to practice in the company of others (or wish to attend the Cottage for your massages) it will be business as usual until we are advised by health authorities to do otherwise.
Immune Booster Hint from Oriental Remedial TheoryIn Oriental theory the immune system is associated with lung energy. When the lung energy is weak so is our protective barriers. Practicing pranayama or breathing techniques can improve our lung energy. Therefore, now is the perfect time to practice pranayama.
Stop, breathe and be healthy
If you would like further information on developing a pranayama or yoga practice at home then feel free to contact me for a complimentary chat today.