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The Best Online Courses To Take Up

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The Best Online Courses To Take Up

Culture /

Pick up a new hobby from home

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Looking to learn a new skill? Read on for some suggestions of online courses you can do from the comfort of your own home, from ballet to mindful art; gardening to photography.

Best Self-Improvement Books / Online Fitness Classes

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  • Sleep


    Pandemic-induced anxieties affecting your sleep? Sign up to Sophrology’s new Sleep Deeply course, which promises to rewire your body and mind to achieve deep, restorative sleep night after night. Led by Dominique Antiglio, Sophrologist at BeSophro Clinics, the digital course takes place over seven weeks, featuring a mixture of practical information, Q&As, breathwork, meditation and light body movement. You’ll be guided on how to bring the body into the ultra-relaxed alpha brain wave state, an ideal priming stage for sleep, using techniques from some of the best sleep retreats in France and Switzerland. 21 October – 3 December 2020, £325,

  • Leopard

    The Great Outdoors

    For many of us, lockdown highlighted the importance of spending time outdoors – but Steve Backshall’s course takes things one step further. The BBC’s Deadly 60 star has launched a new course entitled Nature Knowledge Expert, designed to teach nature enthusiasts about the wild world. You’ll learn about some of the world’s most intriguing and deadly creatures and the corners of the earth they inhabit, the democratic structure of the animal kingdom, sea life and the phenomenon of migration. From £59.

  • Ballet


    It’s time to dust off your ballet shoes, because Dior is offering the chance to take part in free lessons with some of Paris’ most talented dancers. A nod to the design house’s longstanding relationship with ballet, the partnership is designed to ‘awaken the senses lulled by lockdown’, with workshops led by the likes of Eleonora Abbagnato, a Paris Opera Ballet principal dancer and director of the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma ballet company. You can watch them on Dior’s YouTube channel.

  • Mindful Art

    Mindful Art

    Last autumn, MasterPeace opened as a studio and curated art gallery in Eccleston Yards in response to research that showed a link between creativity, mental health and wellbeing – areas which are particularly important at the moment. So, to help cope with the anxiety around Covid-19, founder Zena El Farra has launched at home art kits and online tutorials, giving us a chance to reap the mood boosting benefits of getting creative. Each class opens with a short meditation, and there’s a strong focus on mindfulness throughout. MasterPeace At Home Art Kits from £25. It’s also possible to join an online class without purchasing a kit for £7.

  • Gardening


    Summer is upon us, which means we’re spending more time in our gardens – particularly as we’re all at home more at the moment. So: it’s time to get green-fingered. ‘Gardening and spending time outdoors are activities which enable us to put down our phones, slow down and actually appreciate the world around us and the beauty and inspiration that can be found in our plants, gardens and green spaces,’ says Poppie Jamie, founder of wellbeing app Happy Not Perfect. ‘Caring for plants and watching them grow can give us a real sense of purpose and help us feel grounded.’ The RHS has joined forces with MyGardenSchool to offer a series of online gardening courses, the first being Gardening for Wildlife. This four week course consists of video lectures, an ebook, a virtual classroom, and feedback on your own garden from expert Andy McIndoe. The organisation has also launched ‘Grow at Home’, a new platform for sharing gardening advice with its members. Elsewhere, Botanical Boys have teamed up with Wardian London to run a series of complimentary terrarium masterclasses. Order a kit from the Botanical Boys’ website and tune into one of the workshops online.

  • French Dictionary


    There’s never been a better time to become bilingual. Whether you haven’t studied a language since your GCSEs or you’re an advanced linguist, there are a whole host of online language courses available covering pretty much all languages around the world. Alison, for instance, offers language lessons in everything from Arabic to French, with courses ranging from basic to advanced.

  • Cookery


    Working from home means lots of us are finding ourselves cooking all three meals at home. So why not use it as an opportunity to brush up on your skills? Udemy run several different online cookery courses, covering topics including healthy eating, how to make noodles and wild food. Alternatively, learn from renowned chefs via Masterclass, which offers video tutorials from the likes of Gordon Ramsay and Dominique Ansel.

  • Photography


    Whether you’re keen to become a pro photographer or are simply looking for ways to jazz up your Instagram feed, now’s the time to learn. Those interested in the former should sign up to a professional diploma course at the Institute of Photography, which covers everything from shutter speeds to portrait lighting. For the latter try the London School of Photography, which offers shorter workshops on topics including food and product photography, photojournalism and street photography.

  • Coding

    Computer Programming

    As technology continues to grow, coding is becoming an increasingly valuable skill across all kinds of industries. It may look confusing – but you don’t have to be a genius to understand the language of the internet. And, naturally, it can all be learnt online. There are numerous websites offering courses, many of which are completely free, such as Codeacademy. Udemy also offers a variety of good courses, many of which are suitable for total beginners.

  • Minimalism


    Many of us are keen to channel our inner Marie Kondo – but decluttering can feel overwhelming. Luckily International Open Academy is here to help with its Decluttering Your Home Masterclass, which offers advice on how to say goodbye to items that are no longer serving you, as well as providing information on how clutter affects your overall wellbeing. Tidy home = tidy mind.

  • Sustainablility

    Sustainable Living

    The coronavirus pandemic is understandably taking over the entirety of the news right now, but we shouldn’t forget about another hugely pressing, worldwide issue: climate change. So why not dedicate some time to our beloved planet? The Sustainable Living Course from Centre of Excellence teaches students about everything from energy conservation to recycling to food waste, offering practical tips on how to be more eco-friendly in all aspects of life.

  • Chocolate

    Chocolate Making

    Learn the art of chocolate making with one of the world’s leading chocolatiers, Paul A Young. Paul’s new course includes in introduction to the world of chocolate, alongside teaching on how to make truffles, ganaches and moulded chocolates. It’s available through online course provider Learning with Experts, with classes limited to 20 to allow real-time feedback from the master himself.

  • Makeup


    Missed your beauty appointments during lockdown? Become a pro in all things beauty. Masterclass offers a course with renowned makeup artist Bobbi Brown, who’s eponymous line is based around the idea that makeup should be natural and enhance your features. Across 19 lessons, you’ll learn everything from how to choose the right foundation to how to apply makeup in one minute when you’re running late.

    C&TH’s beauty editor Nathalie Eleni is also running a series of online skin and make up workshops. Each session will run for 60 minutes, and allow guests to copy movements and applications from Nathalie in real time, with opportunities to ask questions along the way. Book tickets at

  • London Art Studies

    Art History

    Why is an unmade bed art? What’s the difference between contemporary and modern? Why is the Mona Lisa so famous? These are just some of the questions answered by award-winning arts education platform London Art Studies, which has opened up its subscription site and now offers an hour’s worth of free content. It’s being called the ‘Netflix of the art world’ for a reason: you can dip in an out of the short films, or follow one of the themes (from ‘Beauty’ to ‘Desire’) throughout the site. Elsewhere, The Courtauld Institute of Art has launched a new online summer school, consisting of video lectures and live discussions covering a range of subjects, from the Middle Ages to Manet; Van Eyck to Russian art.