Options for learning practical skills
Before the pandemic, our Holistic Reproductive Practitioner training required all students to attend 6 full days of in person training at the end of year one and another 6 full days of in person training at the end of year two. During these 12 days of healing retreat style learning, students would exchange reflexology and Reiki sessions with each other, receive their Reiki attunements, practice holistic reproductive healing skills, skills for comfort in labour and birth, additional techniques for pregnancy conditions like edema and more. It was a requirement, all students had to attend and often travelled to do so.
The pandemic changed everything. Just prior to the first shut down, I was in Vancouver, British Columbia and then Sedona, Arizona facilitating these in person trainings for our students at that time. Canada's restrictions were strict and far reaching, especially for the not vaccinated, which many holistic health practitioners are. We had to rethink what was possible and create many new resources to help our current and future students complete their studies no matter what circumstances we faced.
Back in 2001, I was seeking out reflexology training for myself. At that time, reflexology schools were somewhat scarce. The school that I chose was over 6 hours away from where I lived and the training was spread out over a long period of time that made it in accessible to me. Interestingly, they also offered reflexology training via correspondence. I questioned whether I could learn a hands on technique like reflexology via correspondence. I had never had a reflexology session. How would I know what to do? In 2001 we didn't have streaming video or zoom meeting rooms. I decided that if the college I chose felt confident that they could teach me reflexology at a distance, then I would take the risk to learn it that way.
A week later I received a manual in the mail. In addition to the history and theory of reflexology, anatomy and physiology etc. the manual included a section that described the reflexology session sequence with illustrations. After I completed a number of practice reflexology sessions my school requested that I send them a VHS recording of my session to them in the mail for their review. They mailed me back feedback about my techniques and progress and I continued with my studies. At the end of my course, once I had memorized the whole session and techniques, I was to send them another VHS recording of my session for my practical exam. By that time I found a reflexology instructor from the same college who was only 2 hours away from where I lived. I requested that I be able to do my final practical exam on her and of course, they approved. This was the first time I offered my reflexology session to someone who knew reflexology. I got 95% on my practical exam! Correspondence learning success!
I revisited my previous intention that all of our students had to complete in person training to certify with our school when in person gathering and travel was no longer possible. Fortunately for our current and future students, we now have so many more resources available for them than were available to me 2 decades ago. This makes training so much more accessible and affordable to more students. In person training is still an option, but most of our students do opt for a fully correspondence agreement.
Unlike me in 2001, our students can:
attend live online seminars with our trainers
stream videos our practical techniques as many times as they wish, to practice skills where they are
have our trainers view their techniques live, one on one, for confirmation and feedback
partner up with other students or alumni in their area to give and receive sessions or practice techniques
We have started offering in person training experiences again for those students who have that desire or need. We will continue to schedule in person trainings in other locations as the situation in Canada and the United States continues to stabilize making travel more predictable and certain for all of our students and trainers, regardless of medical status.
In person training for Holistic Reproductive Practitioner training has been reduced from 6 days each year to 4 days in year one and 3 days in year two. Some practical skills will now be learned online using our new resources regardless of whether a student attends in person training or not. All students regardless of whether they are doing in person training or distance training must complete a practical training workbook for each year.
There are benefits and drawbacks for both in person training and online training. Our trainers can see more techniques via a one on one online zoom session than they can see in a class of 6 students all doing reflexology at one time. When we are receiving reflexology from our students, we can feel what they are doing, but we can't see a lot of the techniques from that angle. In person training is a lovely experience for us and our students. There are benefits to seeing and there are benefits to feeling, either way, we feel very confident in all of the ways our students choose to learn. Our alumni are also proving that both approaches make confident, successful practitioners too.
If you have more questions about learning Reiki, reflexology, or doula in person or online, you can schedule a one on one with one of our trainers.
As our alumni continue to gain experience and confidence we will also continue to expand our team of examiners and trainers in other locations to continue to make our training more accessible to current and future students. If you are a By the Moon alumni and you are interested in being considered for a current or future opportunity to train our future practitioners, please express your interest.