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Comment: Hobbies During the Coronavirus

People around the world have sought refuge in the safety of their own homes from the Covid-19 outbreak. This outbreak has forced people to spend time with their families and work from home where applicable.  


Obviously, you know this because you live on Earth and have access to a news outlet of some sort.  


Being housebound is equal parts amusing as it is frustrating and the choices we make to keep ourselves entertained are questionable. Hoping to unearth some new comic relief, many people have spent hours videoing and editing comedy sketches and the results are close to cinematic * chef kiss * genius. 


With so much time on their hands people have also decided to revisit or challenge themselves with a new activity or hobby, they also feel compelled to post this on social media. Painting, makeup, knitting, becoming TikTok famous, crochet, baking (banana bread specifically) and exercising have all graced our Facebook and Instagram feeds.  


The conversation around this pandemic transforming the public into recreational runners is an interesting one. It seems that almost immediately after global governments announced social distancing, sports trainers were dug out from the bottom of wardrobes and laced onto feet.  


This choice of activity has been criticised heavily by Italian mayors and regional leaders. Stefano Bonaccini, president of the Emilia-Romagna region in Italy, condemned those who suddenly discovered ‘runner’s high’. Bonaccini took to Facebook to reiterate his point and posted “If someone wants to tell me he can’t give up running, I’ll take him with me on a tour of the hospital.” 


This opinion is not universal and according to the World Health Organisation 1.9 billion adults struggle with being overweight. So surely finding oneself bored in the middle of a housebound pandemic is a good time to work on this, no? While it can be debated how effective cardio is when contributing towards weight loss, it is still a step towards becoming more active and fitter. 


Dublin teacher Conor O’Reilly started running recreationally in January as part of his New Year’s resolution and found that running has played an important part in maintaining a clear head during this crisis. “I think it’s great that people are getting out. I think being outdoors in the fresh air is so much better and it’s nice for headspace to get out rather than be in a gym.”  


Conor also commented on how this new online teaching schedule has allowed him to run a bit more freely and really enjoy the sport. “I used to run almost always in the evenings because I would be in school all day – but going out last week in the splitting sun was gorgeous”. 


It is important to remember that running fast does not mean that you are immune to contracting the virus from other people passing by. So, with everything, no matter what new activity you’ve spontaneously picked up, respect social distancing with everything you do.  




DCU Journalism 2020
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