This October, the fitness community in Vancouver gathered together to use the power of sweat to give the power of sight. Eight studios held specialty classes or offered classes by donation in support of Seva Canada's eye care programs.
We would like to thank them for their generosity and their hard work:
Baza Dance Studios
On Saturday, October 8th Baza Dance Studios held a "by donation" blindfolded Kizomba class. Kizomba is one of the most popular genres of dance from Angola and is an evolution of the Angolan Semba and Cape Verde Passada but characterized by slower and very romantic rhythm.
Using blindfolds helped the dancing partners "experience a dear connection" to each other and to the music. The partners also had the chance to briefly experience what it is like to be dependent on someone else to help guide you around every day.
With this class, Baza Dance Studios raised $150 which will help restore the sight of a child by providing cataract surgery including a lens implant, follow-up care, glasses, medications, and transport. Thank you, Baza Dance!
The Dailey Method
The Dailey Method in Kitsilano offered a 75-minute Dailey Cycle class in the dark with glow paint and glow sticks in support of Seva and Sweat for Sight. Participants were all given glow stick bracelets so that everyone glowed to some degree.
After 65 minutes of sweaty spinning, the last 10 minutes of the class was dedicated to stretching and weights, but still in the dark. According to Laura Spencer, Seva Canada Board Member who attended the class: "It wasn't always easy to follow the instructor at times because you couldn't see her other than her bracelets (green for left hand, red for right!), but in a way that made it more fun. It was an adventure and a great workout."
"It was an adventure and a great workout."
This added layer of difficulty helped participants appreciate how tough it is without sight and helped them appreciate the impact that their hard work would have on the people whose sight would be restored as a result of this class.
The glow in the dark class raised $500 which will restore the sight of 10 people - thank you Dailey Method!
Full Circle Studio: Movement Arts
Full Circle was the first studio to sign up for our inaugural Sweat for Sight event and did so with flair: by offering to host a by donation blindfolded Pilates Mat class, with the caveat BYOB - Bring Your Own Blindfold!
Before the class, participants were instructed to collect all of their materials and keep them nearby so they could easily access them during the class... then they put on the blindfolds and began.
At the end, the participants unanimously agreed that they all enjoyed the class and that their blindfolds were helpful not a hindrance because people were more in tune with their bodies and more focused. However, everyone was grateful to be able to take their blindfolds off to head home and were glad that as a result of their blindfolded experience, people would have their sight restored.
The BYOB class raised $230 for Seva which will go toward helping train a local cataract surgeon to serve a community by restoring the sight of thousands of people each year. Thank you Full Circle Studio!
Harbour Dance Centre
Harbour Dance Centre's Intensive Training Program helped raised awareness of Seva and our eye care programs by freestyle dancing with blindfolds. Check out their awesome video:
Thank you Harbour Dance!
Amy Diehl Personal Training and Active Rehab
As part of Sweat For Sight, Amy's 7 am Bootcamp class sweated it up in support of the eradication of preventable blindness. Amy dedicated the class to Seva because she is inspired by Seva's mission to treat and prevent blindness. Thank you Amy!
Barbie Bent, owner of Lagree West is a trained optometrist and therefore Seva's mission is close to her heart.
On October 28th Lagree West held a candlelit session to raise awareness of preventable blindness. In exchange for sweating for an hour, participants restored a person's sight.
Thank you Barbie and Lagree West for your support!
From October 10th-14th Line5 Studios donated 10% of their sales to Seva and held a blindfolded Pilates class on World Sight Day.
The donations from Line5 will go towards supporting a Community Eye Centre in Benin, West Africa. This facility provides remote communities with year-round access to basic eye care covering 90% of all eye conditions and timely referrals to hospitals when surgery is needed.
Line5 decided to support this centre in West Africa because their founder, Myelene Perrier, had previously traveled there and felt a connection with Seva's work in that region.
Line5 raised $300 toward the Community Eye Centre. Thank you Myelene and Line5 for helping to ensure that people in remote and rural areas have year-round access to eye care!
Pure Barre Kitsilano
Pure Barre in Kitsilano, Vancouver supported Seva's Sweat for Sight by hosting a by-donation class on World Sight Day followed by 10 minutes of meditation.
After sweating it out in class, hardworking participants were rewarded with samples of Whisk Premium Matcha and a mini matcha brownie.
Pure Barre's by donation class raised $100 - which will restore the sight of two people in Cambodia - thank you Pure Barre!
In addition to these amazing studios and people, we would also like to thank The Hive Bouldering Gym, Open Door Yoga and Eat Play Love Fitness for their generous in-kind donations of bouldering classes, yoga passes, and personal training sessions to help promote Sweat for Sight.
We would also like to thank Peter Roach from Bayswater Neuromuscular who helped raise awareness for preventable blindness and Seva's programs by donating advertising space in his clinic around World Sight Day - thank you Peter!
If you are interested in getting involved with Sweat for Sight next year or know a studio, gym or instructor who would be, please email email@example.com.