Today, the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic touch every country and almost every aspect of our lives, may that be socially, politically, psychologically, educationally, physically or economically, and what not. Our special interest here on TraditionalBodywork.com, seen from out the topics we cover on our website, is the massage and bodywork treatment and training industry.
One of the most notable developments is that many trainers — if possible or feasible — have added online training course and class options to their service portfolio. That may be distance learning via eBooks, DVDs or streaming video or live online classes offered via applications like Skype, Zoom, and such. Of course, online and distance learning has its advantages and disadvantages, but that’s another topic.
It’s clear that the growth of the online training market has accelerated (of course, not only for massage and bodywork, but for many other educational enterprises) and it’s obvious that online and distance learning is not only here to stay, but it is and will be a very important factor for massage and bodywork schools, teachers and institutes to be able to ensure continuity and to be able to survive. In fact, having online training course options has become part of the so-called “New Normal” way of doing business.
The big lesson the industry has learned today is that one cannot count only on in-person in-class training courses and retreats for business continuity. Of course, as soon as things normalize in a post-COVID era, and surely it will, in-person training will grow again, but few will totally abandon the offering of online training modules.
First of all, there’s a growing number of students who have discovered online training, and competition-wise businesses will need to be able to supply for this demand. Secondly, a similar worldwide crisis with travel restrictions and/or social distancing measures can occur in the future and companies will want to be prepared for such a case.
In the pre-COVID era, online and distance learning was already growing, but surely the current crisis has stimulated this growth and moreover, the IT-industry is rapidly adapting by supplying more bandwidth, more internet speed and more advanced remote-study options. The end of developments is not in sight yet, and I think the virtual classroom will see an enormous evolution in times to come, significantly impacting educational institutions.
For now, let’s first hope we can really get back to “normal” soon, to then be able to fully and freely concentrate on the “new normal” way of offering and receiving massage and bodywork training.