Being in high school means stress. College preparation tests, rigorous classes and maintaining good grades are all factors that contribute to my stress being a junior, so when I found out that Yoga Body Studios were offering yoga classes on campus free of cost I had to check it out for myself.
Walking into the MPR after school and hanging out for a few minutes I quickly realized I was the only student who showed up. Soon after setting up my mat and removing my shoes, Ms. Dominguez, Mr. Conacher, and Mr. Lemen walked in to join the “student class” which only consisted of me that Monday. Once the four of us were ready to go the instructor began the session.
Class started with some basic movement and breathing exercises. Poses like the downward dog, child’s pose and cactus arms were introduced. Jennifer Vidal, the instructor, guided us through the movement and how to control our breath. The movement didn’t require any special skills which made it easy to follow.
While engaging in yoga I felt like my breathing was under control and with every breathe my body could flow freely. Throughout the 45 minute class my mind was aware of my actions and I found headspace in the last 10 minutes of class when Jennifer Vidal incorporated yoga nidra. Yoga nidra is a conscious state of mind where your body feels as if you’re asleep but you are actually awake.
During yoga nidra we were laying on the floor and focusing on our breathing as well as being aware of our bodies. I had never experienced anything like it before and the feeling was extraordinary. My body felt heavy on the floor but I was aware of my surroundings and knew what was going on around me simply through the sounds of others breathing and the calming melodies playing in the background. This exercise was so relaxing that Mr. Conacher took a quick nap in the process.
At the end of class I had the opportunity to speak to Jennifer Vidal and Grace Gonzales who work together at Yoga Body. Grace Gonzales uses yoga as a way to relieve stress and has done so for 17 years so far. She also mentioned that she had a career in teaching and even incorporated yoga in the classroom to help her students relax.
Jennifer Vidal, the instructor, understands that being in a school environment can cause stress among students and teachers so she believes yoga can help relieve some of those troubles. She hopes her students can find peace within themselves and make good choices.
Yoga overall genuinely relaxes the mind and body which causes you to feel good about yourself. With all the stress from school I advise all students try yoga at least once and experience all its benefits.