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Hybrid fitness—learn how to bring your virtual & In-Person students together.

Hybrid fitness—learn how to bring your virtual & In-Person students together.

. 3 min read

This blog post is a part of our “Ride the Heatwave” series focusing on building community through In-Person and virtual hybrid learning during this summer of change.

The summer season brings a lot of flexibility to people’s schedules, so shouldn’t their fitness options do the same?

Now is the perfect time to offer your clients a flexible schedule of In-Person, Virtual, and hybrid formatted classes.

What do we mean by hybrid classes? We mean teaching one class to both In-Person and virtual students.

Janine, also known as Purple Room Yoga on Moxie, supercharges her client experience by doing just that.

“What I love about teaching the hybrid format is the accessibility it gives my students. It becomes available to everyone. While Moxie does an amazing job of making the online experience as interactive as possible, there is nothing like having the students moving and breathing in front of you, experiencing the group energy,” Janine of Purple Room Yoga.

Teaching a hybrid class allows your students who cannot attend In-Person to still enjoy the setting and the class through the camera lens.

Every Friday, Janine teaches a class where both digital and In-Person students come together.

She adds both versions of the class to her schedule, so clients can book whichever they prefer. You can find her full schedule here.

“I have been teaching hybrid classes since July 2020, and I have learned a few things along the way. It’s definitely a challenge since you have students both in person as well as online. Giving both sets of students your attention is important. It's easy to just focus on the In-Person students in front of you, but it’s crucial to include all students,” says Janine.

So, how does she do it?

Photo of Janine teaching In-Person and from the online perspective.

Janine starts by setting up her laptop so that the camera is facing her at an angle. This way, virtual students can see her movements mirrored from a side-view perspective. She faces her In-Person attendees straight on.

To create the best audio experience, Janine connects one microphone to both her computer and external speaker, to make sure all her students can hear her.

Pro tip: Play your music through an external speaker. It is difficult for virtual students to hear your instruction if you play it through  your laptop.

Want to host your first hybrid class? Here are a few more key details to keep in mind:

  • Set Expectations. State early in your class how you want your students to interact with you and how you will interact with your students. Where will the bulk of your eye contact and attention go? Outlining this beforehand will set up your class for success and let your students know how to succeed.
  • Fuse the Two. Digital or In-Person, you are building a community, so introduce them to each other! Use Moxie Message before or after class for this, or take advantage of the warm-up to connect your students with classic icebreakers like Bacon or avocado? Dogs or cats? Be creative with connecting your community.
  • Focus. If you speak too generally, you will lose both audiences. If speaking at length, make sure you focus on one group, either in person or online. If you give short cues while moving, it’s okay to speak to both crowds and look in both audience's directions. Speak directly to whoever you are referring to.

If you have a beautiful setting in mind or great virtual programming, combine the two and see what opportunities you create for your students.

Connecting community members gets more people actively involved, grows your clients base, and establishes deeper relationships with your class.

Janine's In-Person students after class.

Looking to teach your first outdoor class but not sure where to start? We’ve got great tips on how to build an outdoor class here.