A yoga teacher has welcomed students from around the world after spending the last year teaching online from the confines of her houseboat home.
People from the US, Australia, New Zealand and across Europe tuned in to watch Harriet McAtee, who broadcasts from her boat on the River Thames in Oxford.
The Brisbane-born instructor, 30, initially saw her earnings halve during the first lockdown.
However, she adapted by moving classes online and taking over a yoga teacher training business, which has since garnered fans thousands of miles away.
“We can be in session at times and we span almost every time zone… I never thought that would happen,” Ms McAtee said.
‘I led a class at the end of last year and there was a student from Australia who was up at 3.30am,’ she added.
Preparing for her Zoom classes involves rearranging furniture on her narrow 72ft (22m) boat, while yoga poses are suited to the limited space.
Ms McAtee explained: “My narrow boat is 1.83m wide and I’m 6ft tall. When I extend my arms I can touch the wall and the window, so I can’t fully extend my arms. “
Raising his arms above his head is also not possible because the ceiling is 6 feet 3 inches (1.9 m). However, she said “a bit of movie magic” ensures her whole body can fit in the frame.
“It’s a time when everyone is stuck at home, and it’s nice to feel like you’re doing something and connecting with people,” Ms McAtee said.
“There’s a real sense of community, which I think people really need.”
Although she was “inspired” by the response to her videos, she admits there are downsides to virtual training and that things such as touching, singing and breathing are more difficult on Zoom.
The boat can also be “a little cold in the winter”, she says, but the view “is quite incomparable”.
Ms. McAtee leads the Nourish Yoga training team, which averages 10 students and teachers per day.
Their focus on inclusivity leads them to work with groups such as people with mental health issues, pregnant women, and those who might find traditional yoga difficult.