As lockdown 2.0 draws to a close many of our local clubs are preparing to restart face to face classes this week. And it seems that access to local communities such as ours can’t come soon enough, with a recent poll conducted by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s Royal Foundation and Ipsos MORI showing that 63 per cent of parents have experienced loneliness during the Covid-19 crisis – up 25 per cent on pre-Corona levels.
The research also found that 90 per cent of parents see their own mental health and wellbeing as being critical to a child’s development – but only 10 per cent actually take the time to look after themselves as they get ready to have a baby. And this figure may be even lower during Covid-19 given how hard it is to access maternity and postnatal support in the current health crisis.
These findings really chime with our own thinking about classes. We see them as an incredibly important way of connecting mums; helping them to improve both their own physical and mental wellbeing while also assisting with the social and educational development of their little ones. Being able to get out to classes, exercise safely and connect with those going through the same challenges of pregnancy and parenthood have always been vital elements of our members’ maternity routines, but they are even more crucial at this time.
Life feels like it has been put on hold in so many ways this year, but the mental and physical wellbeing needs of today’s parents, and the developmental needs of their little ones can’t be put on hold. We strongly believe that while it’s in our power to safely get mums-to-be, mums and little ones out of the house to meet and share class experiences in a socially distanced, safe way then we will do so.
All our classes are fully risk-assessed against the Covid-19 context, are run in a socially distanced manner with limited class sizes and from Covid-secure venues to keep attendees safe. Online classes also continue to run via a private Facebook group so that members can mix and match local and online classes, or so that they have the option of doing classes from home should they need to self-isolate.