Relaxation at the Rec: Free Fitness Classes

Previous to college I was a varsity athlete playing volleyball year-round. When I was not doing drills, I was running, lifting, or participating in some sort of physically stimulating activity. My body loved me for it and I was in the best shape of my life. Unfortunately, since I am no longer forced to condition for a sport, I have found myself falling into a deep, dark pit of excuses allowing my fitness  to cascade down the ladder of my priorities.  As the third quarter approached, I decided that would no longer be the case. Instead of taking that enticing hour nap after class, or simply looking at some unnecessary form of social media, I have started to experiment with different classes offered at the rec center. If you are at all interested in getting back into a routine I highly recommend possibly trying one of the options that I am going to mention.

Last week, as life began to reappear across campus as another Thursday night approached, a couple of friends and I threw on our leggings and headed to a class called meditation yoga.  Had always wanted to try yoga, but never got around to it, so I was excited but also a little nervous. At 5’ 10 I am certainly not the most flexible or graceful person, but this class was perfect for a beginner. The instructor was helpful and continually emphasized the option to go back into an easy child’s pose if anything did not feel right. Most of the poses done throughout the hour were very basic, but they provided a nice stretch and a light core workout. The last fifteen minutes were dedicated to relaxation and mindful meditation in a laying position. If it were not for the pop music playing in the Zumba class next door I may have even fallen asleep, but I still left feeling revitalized and relaxed.

I was so excited by my first experience with yoga that I decided to try another class that was a little more advanced. My second class was called Vinyasa yoga and sort of rotated poses in a cycle. Do not be alarmed if you are only a beginner though, for each movement alternatives were given to make it less, or more, advanced. The instructor emphasized the connection between mind and body and we finished with a moment of relaxation and reflection.

Both classes were a great core workout, but I still like to mix in some cardio, usually a mile on the track is my go to. In the future I am hoping to try the Zumba and spin classes also offered at the rec center. Adding the exercise into my routine has actually made me more relaxed and eased the stress of a jam packed spring quarter.

Kate Stone

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