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'Together but Alone' - a revealing insight into the paradox of teaching yoga online in these times

Posted by Louise walker on

Alone but Together. Together but Alone


"In the silence I watch a smokey incense dragon shape, floating lazily in the air.

I breathe in its musky woody scent and it drops me into that familiar space of sacredness.

 I drop inside that moment, savouring the stillness and the scent that is meant, once again, only for me today. Here alone.


It’s quiet and cool within these four walls, so quiet that I can hear the steady, familiar beat of my own heart.

 The room’s been lovingly set for yoga - purple blocks, lime green mat all thoughtfully arranged, bright but lonely by themselves in the centre of these four walls.


Suddenly . . .the online meeting room crackles into life on my laptop, interrupting the peace and stillness

 And in an instant, we are collided together. One by one the yogis arrive on the small silver screen, all unique in their arrival and in their own isolated ‘at home’ yoga space.

I watch smiles appear on their faces, I hear their laughter, some heavy sighs, I sense their readiness to practise , the shared need to unwind from life’s tensions and to reconnect with a deeper place within . . . .

We are Alone but together. Together but alone.


I move alone. Small figures on the silver screen gently mimic the sacred shapes my body bends and stretches into

Even though I know they can hear me, my heart-felt shares and caring alignment cues are met with an empty silence

I miss the “ooh’s” and “aah’s” of my students as they open their hamstrings, hips and hearts

The echoes of past experiences spent together in these four walls pulse around and within me 

I miss the warmth of their bodies clad in smooth to touch lycra

 I miss the look of their multi-coloured yoga mats, placed in a semi-orderly line next to mine

I miss the smell of their perfume as I lean in to give an adjustment

I miss the tears of relief, release and realisation shed in this room

I miss the familiar sound of the crunch of pebbly stones under yogis feet, as they arrive outside with flushed cheeks from the exertion of their journey down the winding path to our studio

And I miss the laughter that so often bounced off these four walls as we moved together as one, moving through shapes and building heat within and new possibilities without


Today we move together. Each of us moving alone.


We’re alone . . . but together. Together but alone."

Louise Walker - Yoga, Meditation teacher and Developmental NLP coach 



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