South Orange-Maplewood: How to Stay Fit, Healthy and Well During COVID-19

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With most of us largely cooped up at home during the coronavirus pandemic, and gyms and fitness/exercise studios shuttered for the time being, it can be hard to maintain health and wellness routines.

But lack of exercise and disruption of daily life can take its toll. Worry about coronavirus and boredom from being isolated indoors can lead not just to unwanted extra pounds and stiff joints, but also stress and anxiety.

The South Orange-Maplewood fitness and wellness community is here to help, with ways to maintain both your body and your mind at home, on your laptop or phone.

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Know of another gym/fitness center/exercise studio/wellness provider offering at-home solutions? Email us at

  • Amy Hayes is a Maplewood-based personal trainer offering sessions via FaceTime and Zoom. (973) 223-2092.
  • ChaiseFitness — Sign up for daily 35-minute live classes via Zoom at 10am. Email at least 30 minutes prior to the start of the live stream to register. We will email you a link to join 5-10 minutes prior. Zoom Classes $12.
  • The Connection — The Connection Team is committed to supporting you, even from afar. Zumba, yoga, gentle yoga, cardio, Latin dance, arching & bending and more are available via Zoom.
  • D&I Fitness in South Orange has a schedule of virtual classes every day, as does its sister studio, Humble.
  • The GYM Maplewood is going virtual to train clients. They say on their Facebook page, “If you need some personal workout guidance while at home. Let us know.” You can connect here.
  • Allison Kalsched, personal trainer:  “I’ve opened my online boot camp for all. You get 8 weeks of workouts delivered to you that you can do anytime, anywhere. Each workout has video and written instructions as well as access to me and accountability (I know if you have done it!). It’s a great way to keep your fitness routine. $99 for the program.”

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But what if you are looking for the stretch and serenity of a yoga class when all the studios are closed? Again, SOMA area businesses are stepping up.

  • Shakti Yoga offers all kinds of yoga classes on Zoom.
  • Baker Street Yoga is a hot vinayasa studio, with a bouquet of classes. Find the full group of offerings here.
  • South Mountain Yoga is offering online classes on Zoom as well. Emma from South Mountain Yoga says, “our online offerings cost the same as our regular, in person classes. My staff are offering the same consistently high quality yoga instruction in our virtual studio as they used to offer in our brick and mortar studio. I’m determined to keep compensation regular for as many of them as I can, for as long as I can.”

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If you are looking for mindful mediations, Jean Vitrano of the Wellspring Health Collective is offering sessions via Zoom on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays. In an email she says, “[w]e will be back every Sunday and I have added shorter 30 minute sessions on Tuesdays and Fridays. I welcome you to utilize these offerings to take care of yourself these weeks. Create routines that help you to feel connected to yourself and to each other. I am also offering private phone or Zoom sessions.”

Says Anne Sussman of Mindful Meeting Place, “meet me every Monday afternoon at 3pm Eastern time for free Facebook live meditations. I will be leading this for the foreseeable future at Mindfulness Meeting Place. Daily meditations are Donation-based and open to everyone (no previous experience needed and free to everyone).” Mindful Meeting Place is also offering a 21 day meditation challenge for $50.

As the days of social distancing stretch on, staying mentally well and free of anxiety may be your goal.

If so, Therapist Madelyn Petrow-Cohen, MA, LCSW, SEP, advises, “I recommend people stay in touch virtually with family and friends on a regular basis…[also] to try to maintain a loose schedule and daily routines to help ground and regulate themselves.”

In addition, Petrow-Cohen recommends something called EFT tapping. EFT tapping is a method using principles similar to acupuncture, where you tap on meridians in your body to help regulate energy. She recommends The Tapping Solution App, which is free to download, and quick to start.

Another effective technique recommended by Petrow-Cohen to deal with coronavirus anxiety is R.O.A.R., or Relax, Orient, Attune, and Release, a method designed to help kids deal with anxiety. The R.O.A.R. method of meditation can be found on the Insight Timer app, also available with a quick and free download on your phone.

Both The Tapping Solution and ROAR apps have guided meditations to deal with anxiety specifically related to the coronavirus pandemic.

So whether you are trying to keep extra weight off your body or mind, there’s someone in SOMA who can help.

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