Covid-19 advice and guidance

TSYP COVID-19 GUIDANCE 10th NOVEMBER 2020
Advice continues to differ depending on your region and country – please always ensure you check the information for your own locality.

England – whilst currently in lockdown, which does prevent gyms etc. from opening, therapists (and this includes yoga therapists) can continue to work from home if certain conditions are fulfilled.

These conditions are that 
1 It is a one-to-one meeting 
2 Your venue is Covid Secure, see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19
3 The client has an identified mental or physical health condition or injury that is 
4 Causing pain or having an adverse impact on their mobility or quality of life and 
5 Your therapeutic intervention will support your client and their condition 
6  Therapists cannot work in clients’ homes however unless they have received a direct referral from a statutory regulated  health professional, such as a doctor.
This guidance is based on the legal advice given to CNHC and based on the principle that yoga therapists meet the definition of “other…health services, including services relating to mental health” contained in Section 47, Part 3 of the Schedule to The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) (No. 4) Regulations 2020

TSYP COVID-19 GUIDANCE 9th NOVEMBER 2020


Advice continues to differ depending on your region and country – please always ensure you check the information for your own locality.


Wales – has now come out of lockdown and gyms etc. are being allowed to re-open.


England – whilst currently in lockdown, which does prevent gyms etc. from opening, therapists (and this includes yoga therapists) can continue to work from home if their work place is Covid secure.  
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19

This guidance is based on the legal advice given to CNHC and based on the principle that yoga therapists meet the definition of  “other…health services, including services relating to mental health” contained in Section 47, Part 3 of the Schedule to The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) (No. 4) Regulations 2020

Therapists cannot work in clients’ homes however, unless they have received a direct referral from a statutory regulated health professional, such as a doctor.

The advice keeps changing, so please ensure you always check the guidance for your local area. 

TSYP COVID-19 GUIDANCE NOVEMBER 2020

As of Thursday 5 November, England will be under new lockdown measures which will stop you from working in person. These will be reviewed by the Government in due course. Until then you must respect the measures in place for your local area and Tier.  


https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-national-restrictions-from-5-november

Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland all have different measures in place. Please check the government website for local and country guidance.

TSYP COVID-19 GUIDANCE OCTOBER 2020
Please read this carefully if you are teaching at present.

Three Tier Alert
As of 14 October 2020, there is a three-tier approach to COVID alerts, applicable across the four nations. The alert level may well differ from region to region and even from town to town.  
Please see here:
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/local-covid-alert-levels-what-you-need-to-know

Where there is a Very High Alert Level the local authorities may impose added restrictions.  

In order to ensure that you are aware of what level your area is in please check here:
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/full-list-of-local-covid-alert-levels-by-area

Sport England has also issued guidance, see here: 
https://www.sportengland.org/how-we-can-help/coronavirus

For locations in the Medium Alert Level, the Rule of 6 only applies to socialising and not to professionally taught classes. Therefore, classes of more than 6 can go ahead as long as you: 

  • stay in groups of 6 or less before and after class
  • maintain 2-metre social distancing 
  • ensure all hygiene measures are adhered to 
  • and that you are covered by insurance 

Courses can go ahead as they are classified as education, as long as all COVID restrictions are adhered to as above.

In the High Alert Level areas, you cannot mix with people from outside your home or your bubble indoors but otherwise the rules for Medium Alert Level apply.

In Very High Alert Level areas you must consult your own local authority for guidance, but you cannot move between a High Alert Level area and a Very High Alert Level area. 

Teaching one-to-one
There is a mixture of conflicting and contradictory guidance on teaching face-to-face in your own home. 
Here are some considerations:

Medium and High Alert Level areas
BWY are advising that one-to-one teaching must be assessed on a case-by-case basis and CNHC also offer some guidance. 

If you have a self-contained room or annex used only for your work and which you are able to clean to COVID standards, then this can be used as long as the terms below are adhered to:

  • maintain 2-metre social distancing 
  • ensure all hygiene measures are adhered to as per a Covid secure environment
  • and you are covered by insurance

If you teach in a room that is in the house and used by other members of the household then this will not be permitted. Similarly, if you are unable to properly clean furniture, floors, etc. then you cannot use this for one-to-one work. 

Very High Alert Level areas
All these rules change all the time, and if you are located in a Very High Alert Area the local authority may impose greater restrictions impacting on what and how you can teach. 
In Very High Alert Level areas we would suggest that one-to-one work is not allowed, but this will be determined by Local Authority Guidance. 

However, we would also ask that you look to the spirit of the guidance and not just the text. We understand that for many of you this is question of livelihood. Nonetheless, where possible please consider teaching online. 

Track and Trace
It is not a legal requirement for people running private yoga classes or one-to-ones to register for a QR code at this current time. However indoor gyms, leisure centres and community halls do require their own QR code and poster. Please ensure that if you teach at such a venue there is a QR poster, as from September this is a legal requirement. 

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/maintaining-records-of-staff-customers-and-visitors-to-support-nhs-test-and-trace#list-of-settings

First Aid
We have organised an online First Aid Course with Colin Fordham in early 2021 to bridge the gap if you are unable to fulfil your First Aid renewal due to COVID. This will give you a one-year certificate. Course details will follow in the next few days.  

Most important is to ensure that you are keeping up to date with the latest Government legislation and advice for your particular area. 

TSYP COVID-19 GUIDANCE SEPTEMBER 2020

The Government’s latest advice makes it illegal to have more than 6 people gather together either in private, public, indoors or outdoors, as of Monday 14th September. To date this has only been guidance.

Please update yourself on the current advice:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/providers-of-grassroots-sport-and-gym-leisure-facilities

Many teachers are already holding classes online but many too are moving back towards meeting and teaching in person.

TSYP suggests that you continue to look broadly at the situation we find ourselves in – and try not to rush any decisions you take on how to teach. Above all we have all  been advised to try to curb the spread of the virus. Based on the principle of ahimsa, avoiding harm, it is important to ensure that you can deliver your teaching as safely as possible, remembering that we have online platforms such as Zoom as an alternative to meeting in person, however tempting the latter option is. TSYP’s guidance remains the same as it has been previously – read below. 

TSYP COVID-19 GUIDANCE AUGUST 2020

INTRODUCTION

As yoga teachers and therapists, we owe a duty of care to our students. The TSYP Code of Ethics sets out what is expected of teachers in this tradition and is based on the principles set out by Patañjali in the Yoga Sūtra-s.  

This guidance aims to compile what is currently seen as best practice for yoga teachers and therapists in the UK. The situation in the UK in respect of advice on Covid-19 is changing frequently, in response to continuing outbreaks, and ‘spikes’ in numbers may be different in the four countries (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland).  

It is therefore imperative that you check the latest Government Guidance and Advice in the area in which you are practising. 

https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

GENERAL PRINCIPLES 

This guidance is exactly that – guidance.  It is not an exhaustive list of things to consider. It is always your responsibility to ensure that you are up to date with the Government’s guidance and that you satisfy yourself and your student that it is safe for you to teach that particular student in the manner which you have chosen. Everyone is different – there cannot be a one-size-fits-all approach.

Risk Assessment

In order to inform your choice of where and when and who to teach, please complete a Risk Assessment:

Teacher members can find TSYP Risk Assessment here and TSYP Health and Safety Policy here.

The Health and Safety Executive also give guidance here: https://www.hse.gov.uk/risk/controlling-risks.htm

Who can I teach face to face?

Consider carefully whether to work face to face, bearing in mind there is always Zoom or other online platforms. See our guidance for teachers working over the internet here and for students here.

You should not work face to face

  1. If someone is showing any signs of Covid-19 

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/symptoms/

  • If you or any members of your household are showing any signs of Covid-19.
  • Currently there is new advice on shielding. This is likely to change dependent on local outbreaks. Please see 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19

If a student is a in a moderate risk group please see https://www.thefamilypracticewesterncollege.nhs.uk/covid-19-info-for-at-risk

Teaching classes – matters to consider

  1. Complete a risk assessment 
  2. Can you comply with your insurer’s requirements? And have you checked their most recent policies and guidance? 
  3. Are you able to maintain a safe social distance?
  4. Should you and your student be wearing a face mask? Or any other PPE? 
  5. Should you take your student’s temperature before allowing them in?
  6. Can you be mindful about how much you need to touch a student? 
  7. Will they need to use the toilet? Should you provide them with paper towels?
  8. Is your First Aid up to date and if not, can you complete an online refresher?
  9. Is your student willing and able to travel to you or you to them safely?
  10. Remember that singing is still not permitted and consider how this impacts on chanting classes!  They are, after all, very similar….Please check this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-outbreak-faqs-what-you-can-and-cant-do/coronavirus-outbreak-faqs-what-you-can-and-cant-do

HYGIENE

  1. Can you provide hand sanitiser for both the beginning and end of a class?
  2. Can you thoroughly clean the premises between students?
  3. Can your student bring their own mat?
  4. Are toilets cleaned between students and can you offer paper towels? 
  5. The Government has now provided advice for close contact services:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/close-contact-services

INSURANCE

Each insurance company may take a differing view of what is permissible and safe.  Therefore, please check with your own insurance company:

Balens: https://www.balens.co.uk/Covid/

BWY: https://www.bwy.org.uk/covid-19/

FIRST AID 

TSYP is aware that it may not have been possible for you to update your First Aid certificate during lockdown. We have therefore given you a six-month extension but suggest that you apply for an update as soon as possible and if not take an online refresher.  

TSYP still requires you to have a First Aid certificate even if you are teaching online. 

Examples of online First Aid Course providers are: 

https://www.trainingexpress.org.uk/course/workplace-first-aid-training/ https://www.gdrsolutions.co.uk/elearning/elearning-course-list#wfa 

As the Covid-19 pandemic continues, it is prudent to review the first aid procedures you have been taught. For instance:

  • Assessing the environment: What is a greater risk to yourself and the casualty?
    Would the immediate danger outweigh the risk of contracting Covid-19?
  • Including extra PPE in a first aid kit i.e. face masks, gloves, aprons, etc.
  • Further guidelines and information on CPR can be found here:

COVID-19: guidance for first responders

Statements and resources on COVID-19 (Coronavirus), CPR and Resuscitation

CPD

TSYP is aware that it may not have been possible for you to obtain all your CPD points this year. You will therefore only need 10 CPD points this year and not 20. 

OTHER ORGANISATIONS 

For those of you who are also members of CNHC please ensure that you are up to date with the advice provided by them.

LOOKING AFTER YOURSELF

This may seem like an afterthought, but it is far from that. As teachers we need to set an example to our students and to those around us. Therefore, please ensure that you are doing what you can to keep well and take care of yourself. The tools of kriya yoga are always there for us!

Maintain your personal practice

Take exercise outside 

Eat well and appropriately

Try to sleep well

Reflect on how you are feeling

Maintain your sessions with your mentor

And remember that we cannot control everything – much as we would like to

THE AUTUMN 

There is much talk of what will happen in the autumn and it is anyone’s guess when we will be able to teach face to face, and where we will be able to teach.  

Many teachers and students have reported that clarity is helpful.  

Suffice it to say that it is your responsibility to keep yourself up to date with Government guidance.  

https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus


Updated on 21st July 2020

As the Covid-19 pandemic continues, it may be prudent to review the first aid procedures you have been taught. For instance:

  • Pay extra attention to hand and general hygiene 
  • Assessing the environment and deciding what is a greater risk to yourself and the casualty.
    Would the immediate danger outweigh the risk of contracting Covid-19?
  • Including extra PPE in a first aid kit i.e. face masks, gloves, aprons, etc.

Further guidelines and information on CPR can be found here:

COVID-19: guidance for first responders

Statements and resources on COVID-19 (Coronavirus), CPR and Resuscitation

If you have any questions please contact your first aid provider.


Updated on 20th July 2020

UK GOVERNMENT COVID-19 GUIDANCE FOR CLOSE CONTACT SERVICES

Please ensure that you read this guidance on working safely – https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/close-contact-services


Updated on 25th June 2020

COVID-19 GUIDANCE – COMING OUT OF LOCKDOWN  JUNE 2020

As of 4th July the Government has advised that 

  • Gyms cannot re-open indoors
  • But that the 2 m rule has been relaxed to 1 m – but only where absolutely necessary
  • Face-to-face consultations can re-open but only in certain circumstances 

Below we provide guidance for the issues to consider with the easing of lockdown and for when you are preparing to teach in person once again.  

However, please remember that it is your responsibility to keep yourself up to date with Government guidance – we may not be able to alter our guidance as fast as the official Government advice changes – and  it  may  well change again. Please see the government’s guidance for the most up-to-date advice: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

Who can I teach face to face?

You should not work face to face

  1. If a student is shielding – https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19
  1. If someone is showing any signs of Covid-19  https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/symptoms/
  1. If you or any members of your household  are showing any signs of Covid-19.

Consider carefully whether to work face to face when – there is always zoom – see our guidance for teachers working over the internet here and for students here.

If a student is a in a moderate risk group please see https://www.thefamilypracticewesterncollege.nhs.uk/covid-19-info-for-at-risk

In preparation for possible easing of restrictions please consider the following:

  1. Can you complete a risk assessment including the following criteria? The Health and Safety Executive give guidance here https://www.hse.gov.uk/risk/controlling-risks.htm
  1. Can you comply with your insurer’s requirements? And have you checked their policies and guidance? 
  1. Can you maintain social distancing with your client the whole time?
  1. Has  your client been shielding?  In which case you should not be working with them until told safe to do so.  See  https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/people-at-higher-risk/whos-at-higher-risk-from-coronavirus/
  1. Should you and your student be wearing a face mask?  Or any other PPE? 
  1. Should you take your student’s temperature before allowing them in?
  1. Can you provide hand sanitiser for both the beginning and end of a class?
  1. Can you thoroughly clean the premises between students?
  1. Can your student bring their own mat?
  1. Can you ensure that there will be no hands-on touching or adjustments?
  1. Will they need to use the toilet?  Should you provide them with paper towels?
  1. Are you able to follow any criteria set by a regulatory body, such as CNHC? https://www.cnhc.org.uk/sites/default/files/News/COVID19_Preparing_Return_work_Updated.pdf
  1. Is your First Aid up to date and if not can you complete an online refresher?
  1. Is your student willing and able to travel to you or you to them safely?

The guidance above is exactly that – guidance.  It is not an exhaustive list of things to consider. It is always your responsibility to ensure that you are up to date with the Government’s guidance and that you satisfy yourself and your student that it is safe for you teach them in the manner which you have chosen. 


Updated on 23rd March 2020

Dear friends,

It seems like a long time since I sent out the last guidance on Covid 19 and yet it was under a week ago!  

Needless to say much has changed since then and so too has the  guidance.  In such a fast paced changing landscape the best place to access correct guidance remains the NHS site as mentioned before:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

It is important also to recognise that for those of you who are members of CNHC the guidance has changed, please see:

https://www.cnhc.org.uk/covid-19-coronavirus-advice-cnhc-registrants

and that BWY also has new  guidance and an invitation for members to access an online webinar on how to teach online:

https://www.bwy.org.uk/covid-19/

and finally an update from our insurers Balens:

https://www.balens.co.uk/Covid/

The long and the short of it though is that we should only be teaching on line from now on and ensuring that we do so safely.  We still have  a duty of care to our students to ensure that they are safe and taught properly – however difficult that may be!

And of course as ever, stay well yourselves.

Many people joined us last night for our virtual chanting Sangha and we are hoping to do this every week – watch this space for an update.

With love Bea 

Chair TSYP 


Posted on 17th March 2020

Dear members,

As we are all aware, Coronavirus is having a dramatic impact on us all.  

As teachers and practitioners of yoga we will be in touch with many people to whom we owe a duty of care.  We are aware that for many teachers teaching yoga is their main source of income and so cancellation of classes will have a significant impact on them.  However, we all need to ensure that we act responsibly and practically and that our approach is rooted in the yama-s and niyama-s. 

The primary source of advice, and that recommended by CNHC, is that from the NHS:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

Practical tips

In practical terms some of the things you should be considering are:

  • Whether you should be meeting a student face to face at all. Please consider their age and state of health. We suggest that you discuss this with them by phone, but above all be mindful of the government direction to avoid all non essential contact with others. Skype and telephone are both safe good options. 
  • Whether you should be holding group classes at present. Again, the government has asked for people to stop gathering in crowded places.
  • When teaching asana to stop using any props which could carry the virus.
  • To encourage all students to bring their own mats, and clean all mats thoroughly between classes (or ensure your gym does).
  • To ensure that all students stay a safe distance away from each other, the current recommendation is 1.5 metres between people.
  • To discourage any physical contact.
  • And above all to insist on hand washing and sanitiser before and after any interaction.

Insurance 

We have spoken to Balens, with whom many of you hold insurance.  They have confirmed that as long as you conform to normal principles of working within your knowledge and maintain appropriate records, you will still be covered for working over Skype. BWY insurers also have a policy statement on their site.

Mental wellbeing

Many students, and indeed teachers, are extremely anxious at the moment and our responsibility also lies in being able to support them.

Mind has a useful online tool to help you consider some of the things we should be thinking about:

https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/coronavirus-and-your-wellbeing/#collapse1b8c9

And lastly, but by no means least… 

Caring for yourself

When many people depend on us it is even more important to ensure that we maintain our own wellbeing.  We must maintain our own practice, call on our mentor if we need to, and ensure that we get enough sleep and fresh air to be able to support others.

A few last thoughts

Only take / buy what you need, the shelves are seen to be empty but do we all need 100 loo rolls?  
Also, is there someone in your street who could do with some TLC ? Phones and shopping can both be done without coming into contact with someone.


And if you have time on your hands please write some blogs for us – we’d love to hear your yoga-related experiences in these unusual times!

With love, 

Bea 

Chair TSYP 

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