May 14, 2020

What really goes on Behind the Scenes of your Online Yoga Class.

Check out Elephant’s Continually-updating Coronavirus Diary. ~ Waylon


The plan was:

Move into our cute new place, dig up the camera that has gathered more dust than memories over the last half decade, clear out a corner of the room with the most natural light, arrange the plants, put out the crystals, and finally record all of those sequences and practices and rituals and recipes that I’ve collected over the years in journals and on sticky notes and in the notes app of my iPhone.

“I’ll share them with my friends and students and teachers that I’ve crossed paths with and some random internet people too” I told myself and others.

That was the plan.

But it turns out that filming your yoga practice is the mother of all yoga practices.

What I thought was that it would take setting up my iPhone inside of a sneaker, finding a cute wall, and pressing record. And what would come through me would be poetic mastery, expertly filmed, with the highest sound quality, and an ethereal vibe.

It would be a gift for my community and an outlet for the wonderful things I’ve learned over the years.

(Okay, I also want to be a cool YouTube personality.)

In reality, friends, it looks like this:

Stacking pots and pans on the edge of your oven and riskily propping your sneaker tripod up onto this death trap to get the shot where you can see your feet and your fingertips while your arms are overhead, as well as the front and back end of your mat—plus a couple of feet.

It looks like alienating your loved ones so that they don’t photobomb your perfectly curated scene and witnessing the harsh reality of what you look and sound like when you teach. (I must have 2,456 video takes on my phone of me saying, “Hey guys!—Sh*t. Hi everyone, I’m—nope. Hello, my name is—f*ck.”)

It looks your partner (who you’ve alienated, remember) finally investing in a tripod for you so that you stop relying on the death trap, only for the cat to knock the tripod over and crack its vital pieces for tripod-ing.

It looks like finally getting everything right. The shot, the outfit, the voice, the yoga sequence itself (don’t even get me started), rolling out of savasana, and checking your device.

Only to find that your battery died three minutes and 23 seconds into your class.

Or your storage filled up five minutes and 42 seconds in your class.

Or the camera auto-focused on the jar of peanut butter on the counter, and not your perfectly curated yoga wall.

Then one day (I haven’t reached this particular day yet), your video works! All 75 minutes recorded onto your device. You didn’t f*ck up the sequence. You didn’t stumble over your words. Your cat didn’t ruin everything.

Now, you now have the absolute delight of uploading your mammoth file onto your underqualified laptop: post-processing, editing, and exporting your video. Waiting one thousand years to upload it to…something.

So that maybe your mom will watch it when she has time.

I find this process all hilariously infuriating. More infuriating in the moment. More hilarious after a glass of wine and a reminder of non-attachment.

I bow in awe to all those who have spent the literal blood, sweat, tears, and turmeric lattes to get their teachings to the masses.

So tell me, my fellow new-to-online-content-ers: Your horror story. Your silver lining. Your unexpected lesson learned. Your tips to make this process less terrible.

*Insert positive affirmation here.*

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