Barriers to participation in Wellness Activities:

Specifically if one is facing health issues.

Barriers posed to clients with low SES:

  • high prices of movement services (especially services with an adaptive focus)
  • scarcity of free/low cost services in the community. These services, when existing, are not scheduled frequently enough in the community (although some great pro bono options are available!), creating inconsistent and unsafe practices.
  • location of services distant from the client's communities of origin/residence.
  • expectation of accessibility to consistent food and water.
  • expectation of accessibility to a phone and of a consistent address.
  • expectation of accessibility to information and expectation that the client's know what classes consists of (i.e. Yoga, Tai Chi, HIIT training) and what the benefits are.

Incomplete and biased approach to stress management:

  • Self-care/health services sometimes connect stress management and health promotion to "pampering", spending money or investing in expensive supplements.
  • High prices of services that focus on "relaxation", "stress management", "self-care" (i.e. massage, spa services, etc.).
  • Approach to "stress" as something manageable with "quick fix solutions" that not accounts for situations of burnout, chronic stress and traumatic stress.
  • Approaches that do not acknowledge that creating physical stress on the body and not allowing it to recover (through exercise) will still have an effect on the mind and nervous system. No pain no gain approach.

Limited approach to wellness services:

  • Low availability of movement, mindfulness, nutrition services who also focus on other areas of wellness (beyond physical wellness). Low focus on assessing benefits of practices in terms of social wellness, emotional and mental wellness, spiritual wellness.
  • Low focus on integrating lifestyle with wellness-oriented practices.
  • Low focus on client-centered practices and higher focus on prescribing solutions and interventions. Low focus on collaboration and tailored interventions.
  • Low focus on informed consent.

Cultural minorities (including clients with disabilities):

  • Services delivered mainly in English,
  • Expectation of medium literacy levels in English and no explanation of documentation,
  • Services that are culturally-biased, not honoring different bodies, backgrounds, abilities and preferences for movement and mindfulness practices.
  • Very low cultural diversity in staff which will not encourage clients from cultural minorities in participating or feeling included in the target population of those services.
  • Low accessibility to clients with sensory issues and with sensory disabilities.

Characteristic of spaces:

  • spaces who either require heavy socialization or minimal socialization (solitary training practices, with little guidance).
  • spaces with a lot of sensory stimulation and startling sounds,
  • spaces with a culture of silence and immobility and low verbal communication about practice (i.e. meditation spaces),
  • inaccessibility of training spaces (spaces that were not easy to navigate),
  • spaces with gender-separated changing rooms and with gender-binary communication practices.