When in doubt, stretch it out: Students practice yoga to relive stress

     Yoga is a combination of meditation and body postures designed to relax the mind and body. College students know stress all too well, and yoga is a healthy coping mechanism.

     IVCC offers a yoga class for credit instructed by Dan Retoff. Retoff is the ideal yoga instructor because he has been practicing yoga for many years and sings its praises. “In my experience, yogas are conducive to peace of mind. When I am experiencing peace of mind, the quality of my life is better. As for stress reduction, the benefits of yoga can be explained on a number of levels. When you are first learning about yoga, doing it takes your mind off of stresses. It also reduces muscle tension and lengthens muscles, which we experience as ease, a sense of physical well being.” 

     Current yoga student Nicole Schalk also added to the conversation by saying, “I highly recommend yoga, it is so relaxing, educational and practical. We learn about coping with stress which is extremely helpful.” 

     Former yoga student Clayton Zelenik has a positive outlook on yoga class as well. He recalls, “As a full-time student, I am constantly battling stresses. Yoga allows me to tune out the noise and focus on myself. Through deep breathing and functional movements, I leave each session feeling rejuvenated.” 

     With proper form, yoga is the answer to the dangerous effects of stress on the mind and body.