Students looking for a change in pace leading up to finals week were able to peacefully unwind at Night of Relaxation, held at the Student Recreation and Wellness Center Wednesday night.
The event, hosted by Associated Students Inc. Beach Balance, is offered twice a year to help students combat stress as the semester comes to a draw. Yoga instructor Jessi McMaster lead about 30 students to an hour and a half of yoga and a guided meditation event.
“I’ve been working here since 2014 and I’m still grateful for the turnout,” McMaster said. “I used to play college soccer and I started doing yoga because I was stiff and scattered…my mind felt good when my body started to feel better. I found that yoga allowed me to become more responsive to myself.”
The first 50 students to arrive at the event were given Chakra healing stones to continue carrying tranquility with them during finals week. The seven Chakras — Muladhara, Svadhishthana, Manipura, Anahata, Vishuddha, Ajna, and Sahasrara — are encouraged to “target every aspect of the self.”
“Chakras are energy centers rooted in your body, to put it simply,” McMaster said. “It’s all about awareness.”
The first 45 minutes of the event was a series of deep-minded Chakra exercises. Students started in Root Chakra, the taproot believed by Yogi’s to be humans’ connection to the Earth. Moving into the Pelvic Chakra position, McMaster informed students that one of the benefits of performing such stretches is to reconnect with body organs to the personal self.
Jason Minion, a history graduate, said that he felt more relaxed after attending the event.
“I’ve done a few yoga classes through the gym, so I’m trying to get into more and it’s cool that these classes are included in the membership,” Minion said. “These sessions allow me to clear my head after a hard day at work.”
Jackie Santiago, an education graduate, has been practicing yoga as a way to alleviate stress and to get back into a routine schedule being a graduate.
“I began practicing a year ago with a friend but it wasn’t until this year that It became a constant for me,” Santiago said. “I feel yoga has brought peace and calm in my life and has been able to help me get through not being a student anymore.”