As the number of coronavirus cases continues to grow across the United States, it is becoming increasingly more important to take protective and preventative measures to reduce the spread of the virus, which include practicing self-quarantine and/or extreme social distancing.
But going into quarantine doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom, nor does it mean you have to lose contact with the world. In fact, it can be a time to revisit those New Year’s resolutions and finally get around to picking up a hobby or learning something new.
Read on for a few recommendations on quarantine-friendly hobbies.
It’s essential to keep yourself healthy (both mentally and physically) during a quarantine, and exercise is a great way to do so.
Work out from the comfort of your living room by taking advantage of online workouts. Ochsner Fitness Center will soon be presenting online fitness sessions you can do from home. Other online options include 7M Fitness or Nike Training Club. There is a never-ending library of free classes on YouTube – ranging from intense cardio routines to relaxing yoga sessions, and some instructors are even live-streaming their classes from home.
If you are not in isolation, go for a walk or run outside, while keeping at least 6 feet of distance between yourself and others.
Of all the hobbies you can pick up, reading is certainly one of the easiest and most accessible.
Reading is also a therapeutic form of escapism that helps the reader to disengage for a while, which is certainly something we could all use a healthy dose of right now.
Don’t know where to start? Check out this list of the best novels of the decade to see if something piques your interest. While you’re at it, consider joining an online book club or starting one among your friends.
Just because discretionary travel is discouraged and much of the world is closed for business doesn’t mean you can’t satisfy your wanderlust. Avoid the long lines, jet lag and even the need for a passport; take a trip right from your laptop via the following virtual tours.
New York City, New York: Stop by the American Museum of Natural History to check out some of the greatest discoveries and artifacts housed at the museum.
Paris, France: Meander through the halls of The Louvre, where you can soak up centuries of art and culture.
Mount Vernon, Virginia: Explore George Washington’s family homeon a tour of the iconic grounds.
Wiltshire, England: Take an interactive tour of Stonehengeand learn more about the latest research on one of the world’s most famous prehistoric monuments.
Washington, D.C.: Get up close and personal with T-Rex, see the world-famous Hope Diamond and come face-to-face with Egyptian mummies at the Natural History Museum.
Cusco, Peru: Explore the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu and wonder at stunning vistas of the mist-shrouded Andes Mountains.
For the latest updates on COVID-19, visit Ochsner.org/coronavirus.
Learn a language
Learning a new language can enrich your life in countless ways, and it doesn’t have to be intimidating or expensive. There are some great free online resources ranging from beginner and intro-level classes to conversational courses, to comprehensive ones that will have you fluent in no time.
Language experts agree that the best way to really get a grasp on a new language is going at it 100% for a particular time period, even if it’s only one or two weeks, meaning your quarantine presents a great opportunity for learning this skill the right way.
Crafts can help pass the time, especially with children. For inspiration, browse this list for projects that can be crafted from everyday household items.
For those with busy schedules, cooking homemade meals is a task that’s often put on the back burner (no pun intended.) But having some extra time at home presents an opportunity to explore learning new dishes you’ve always wanted to get around to trying.
Another option to consider are meal subscription boxes which provide you with all the ingredients you need (meaning you don’t even need to leave your house) and the recipes for your selected dishes. Popular services are HelloFresh, Blue Apron and Marley Spoon.
Learn a new skill
There’s a seemingly infinite number of online classes on websites like edXor Skillshare. Whether you’re looking to pick up needlepoint, learn coding or become a pro at interior design, there’s truly something for everyone!
Concerts around the world have been canceled or postponed in the wake of COVID-19, but the show will still go on for a number of artists.
John Legend, Coldplay frontman Chris Martin, Katharine McPhee, Keith Urban and David Foster, among others, are streaming performances to fans live and for free from their own homes. Get a full list of live virtual concerts here.
Similarly, the New York Metropolitan Opera will stream operas for free via its website, while the Berliner Philharmonkier Digital Concert Hall has waived its membership fee to offer digital access to its archive of concerts to the public through March.