Library yoga: Experiences with virtual yoga programming at the Brock University Library


As a liaison librarian and a yoga instructor, my goal has been to humanize the academic library and offer services that support the rounded growth and well-being of the university community. In September 2020, I began to offer “Library Yoga” at the Brock University Library as a virtual mindful movement practice for students, staff, and faculty. These unconventional study breaks are designed to be done in any kind of clothing and in any kind of space, offering options for practicing seated or standing. To ascertain the impact and value of this program, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic, I conducted a web survey among Library Yoga participants (n = 14) in the winter of 2021. Survey results (published in the Journal of Creative Library Practice) indicate that the program reduced stress, fostered a sense of community, challenged library anxiety and misperceptions of the profession, and provided an opportunity for library outreach. It also fostered relationships among organizations on campus during a time when remote work has challenged our abilities to coalesce as a community. In this presentation, I will discuss the development of Library Yoga, its outcomes and lessons learned, and offer thoughts towards future wellness programming in the library. Wellness initiatives in (virtual) library spaces, where researchers frequently spend long and stressful hours, can set the tone for improved and more holistic academic experiences. For nearly two years, Library Yoga has done this while sparking conversations, inspiring related programming, and building relationships across campus.

Jun 6, 2022 10:00 AM