~ posted by Maria
These are some of the resources I have found useful and/or comforting during the pandemic. I hope you’ll discover something here that helps you, too.
You can search for these in your podcast app of choice. These are links to the podcasts on the web:
- Being Well with Dr. Rick Hanson including the episode, “Coping with Quarantine“
- The Happiness Lab, science-based well-being, including recent episodes focused on the pandemic context
- The Adult Chair, an empowering and effective method for self-help (start with the first four episodes, then jump around and choose topics of need)
- JP Sears (a humorous approach to wellness)
- The Artist’s Way, and I haven’t read this one, but the same author has It’s Never Too Late to Begin Again, Julia Cameron
- The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle
- The Adult Chair, Michelle Chalfant
Some relaxing music playlists:
- My Meditation Music playlist (on YouTube)
- Relaxing Music for Stress Relief playlist (on YouTube)
- Chillaxing (on Spotify)
- Meditation Music Zone (on Spotify)
- Instrumental Music to Work To (on Spotify)
- DJ Taz Rashid (on Spotify)
- Montreal Chill (on Spotify)
- Relax & Unwind (on Spotify)
- If you want to get started with meditation, check out the Headspace app.
- I’ve also got a YouTube playlist of some guided meditations I like.
- The Adult Chair podcast has some meditations on her website and on YouTube.
Even if your space is small, there’s a lot you can do to exercise at home. These are my favourite FREE YouTube resources for at-home workouts:
- Fitness Blender (preferred for cardio workouts and HIIT (high intensity interval training)
- HAS Fit (preferred for weight/strength workouts, kickboxing cardio workouts, resistance-band workouts, and chair (seated) workouts)
- Heather Robertson (best for those who are experienced at working out on their own–her workouts have few cues, fast transitions between exercises, and lots of reps)
- MovNat (for those who dislike traditional workouts; also good for functional mobility)
- SarahBethYoga, including beginner yoga videos
- Yoga With Adriene
If you’d rather just be told what to do, you can try following along with my Weekly Workout Mixes, which curate the resources above into daily workouts that combine strength, cardio, and yoga/stretching, as well as restoration.
I stopped consuming news media some years ago, but recently, I’ve wanted good information about the pandemic. These are news sources I find balanced and helpful; they focus on ONE story per day and the episodes are usually less than 20 minutes long
- The Big Story: Canada’s Daily Newscast
- Front Burner, from CBC News
- The Journal, from the Wall Street Journal
- Some Good News is a weekly podcast from John Krasinski (actor, of The Office fame). He highlights some good news around the world in a delightful way.
The official COVID-19 government websites:
- Government of Canada COVID-19 website
- Government of Ontario COVID-19 website
- City of Ottawa COVID-19 website
Our Daniela has put together a library of resources where you can keep up with music for West Coast Swing.
Circuit DJs on Spotify
Profile: Ruby Lair
- Playlist: Ruby Roxx – 2018-2019-2020 West Coast Swing (over 20 hours of music)
- Playlist: Ruby Roxx – West Coast Swing Blues (over 17 hours of music)
Profile: Katie Fallon
- Playlist: Katie Fallon’s WCS Tunes (over 20 hours of music)
Profile: Stacy Kay
- Playlist: Stacy K’s Floor Tested & Approved WCS Jamz (over 74 hours of music)
- Playlist: Stacy K’s West Coast Swing JAMZ (WCS) (over 201 hours of music)
Playlist: Justin Petersen – #WAList (updated monthly, 20 hours of music)
Ottawa DJs on Spotify
Profile: Brad Blashko
- Top wcs AND blues tracks (over 6 hours of music)
Profile: Thomas Clyde
- Playlist: WCS – BLUES ALL SONGS (over 31 hours of music)
- Also, check out one of Tom’s many playlists divided out by speed and genre
Profile: emariaf (Maria Ford)
Profile: Daniela Bajtos
- Playlist: WCS – Time to Dance (39 hours of music)
- Playlist: Crossover (WCS / Hustle) (over 19 hours of music)
- Playlist: Hustle (over 4 hours of music)
Profile: Todd Coulthard
- Playlist: Todd’s WCS Approved (over 8 hours of music)
- Playlist: Todd’s WCS Prospects (over 15 hours of music)
Profile: Christian CG
Music Playlists on YouTube
Note that these may no longer be regularly curated or maintained. YouTube isn’t an ideal place for creating playlists for listening to music.
West Coast Swing:
Daniela Bajtos (269 videos): https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLnzXtjz-SAbffNgFJtmnwWhcOQ6jC7fhK
Christian Gagne (293 videos): https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL3Zt1ZHyOmTQe-MaWAiJCfnCmLdKXUowq
Maria Ford’s WCS Practice Playlist (33 videos): https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLxxczEd5zN4YsjItUkFebp6w_x7PtuUCz
Weekly Playlists from the Virtual Event: several on the Smoothstyle channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/emariaf/playlists
Daniela Bajtos (66 videos): https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLnzXtjz-SAbfT24hC9LHDomkkinShYThZ
Christian Gagne (43 videos): https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL3Zt1ZHyOmTRg2T1bq5q_CJPJ8Yur8Hmq
dv delvalle (40 videos): https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLD2DsSZ5-qDeTfKHAKNDz0nUt882Ydz5o
To stay updated on upcoming virtual events or any other virtual thing being done right now, become a member of the Facebook group Online West Coast Swing Opportunities.
These are my top recommendations online instructional resources that do not require social media. It’s not an exhaustive list, but these are instructors I can vouch for.
Virtual Private Lessons
If you’re solo, a VPL is best for working on technique, drills, quality of movement, and video reviews. If you have a partner, you can work on nearly anything in a VPL.
FREE WCS classes online
- Smoothstyle’s online lessons
- Doug Silton’s Quarantine Dance Lessons
- West Coast Swing Online
- Michael Kiehm
- Better West Coast Swing
PAID WCS classes online (no social media required)
- West Coast Swing Online
- JTSwing (Jordan Frisbee & Tatiana Mollman)
- kylesarah.com (Kyle Redd & Sarah Vann Drake)
- districtdancer.com (Hugo Miguez & Stacy Kay)
- Dance Factory (Mario Robau Jr.)
And it’s always good to support local! These pros are in Montreal:
One of the professionals also created a calendar to capture as many of these online learning opportunities as possible.
If you have more time now, you can learn about the history, champions, and issues in the West Coast Swing world. These resources will help with that: