Wednesday, April 8, 2020
Left: Mary Ann and her Purpose Discussion Moai are not letting physical distancing stop their road to finding their purpose. Right: Mary and her Core Moai are keeping the momentum going by bringing the gym to their own homes.

For the first time, physical isolation is the best thing for our health, but decades of research show us that social connection is still crucial while we’re physically distant. Moais can help us be social while practicing physical distancing.

A Moai (pronounced “Mo-Eye”) is a group of people meeting for a common purpose. The word “Moai” comes from Okinawa, Japan, where neighbors use Moais as support systems. Virtually connect with your friends or family to ensure that everyone is okay and practice a Blue Zones Project Power 9 Principle together.


Virtual Moai Meetings

There are many free virtual platforms to get your group together. Continue your Walking Moai schedule by walking around your neighborhood individually. “When we get back from our walk, we connect online to check on each other and share what we saw on our walk. It’s not quite the same, but I feel a sense of accountability and connection,” says Teri, leader of the Birney Steppers.

Moai Buddy

Check in and call someone from your group. Create a schedule with your accountability buddy by walking separately and talking on the phone at the same time. Make sure to take every precaution and do this safely!


During this time of physical distancing, staying connected via phone, text, e-mail or other virtual platforms is even more important. Make an effort to reach out to your own Moai – or support network – in your life. Share about your new routine, how you’re staying active and well, what you are grateful for, what feels challenging, or just to ask how they are doing. We have a Moai Starter Kit that lists easy steps to get you started. Here are a few activities you can try or that you may already be doing:

Share a Healthy Recipe

Try a new recipe and cook a plant-based meal. Share your recipe and schedule a virtual social hour at 5 p.m. where you can present your cooked dinner with your friends or family. Commit to this every week. Visit Blue Zones Recipes for a variety of delicious dishes.

Move Naturally

Start your own virtual Workout Moai right in your own home. At-home workouts are trending during this time. Check out these exercises led by Center for Health & Fitness instructors for some fitness inspiration and try it with your family in your living room, or get your fitness buddies on a call to follow the videos together.

Family Game Night

Grab your favorite board game and enjoy quality time with your loved ones. Did you know that putting your families first adds up to 6 years of life expectancy?

Need More Ideas?

Here are 40 suggestions for how to stay connected, while doing your part to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Visit

Now, let’s flatten the curve together.

Share your Moai! And tag #BeachCitiesMoai #SaferAtHomeBeachCities