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RECentral’s Newest Fitness Class ‘Mindful Movement’ Strives to Improve Student Wellness

by Sophia Contreras

This semester, RECentral presents a brand-new fitness class, “Mindful Movement,” that focuses on mental wellness.

According to the American Psychological Association, about 41.6 percent of U.S. college students suffer from anxiety. With the help of this class, RECentral hopes to decrease the number of Central Connecticut State University students affected by stress and anxiety.

“Mindful Movement” concentrates on meditation, small movement and stretches that allow you to deeply reflect about your day and the way you treat your body on a daily basis.

“I hope all of my students gain mindfulness from this class. It’s very hard to practice mindfulness when you’re dealing with school and work. I think this class gives students the structure and ability to take time to meditate and gain a sense of calmness in their life,” CCSU student and “Mindful Movement” instructor Suma Chakravadhanula said.

The class begins with peaceful music, in a simple meditation pose. Meanwhile, the instructor encourages students to relax, release stress and unwind tight muscles. The class incorporates mental reflection and meditation while stretching various parts of one’s body.

Christian Pinho, a computer science major at CCSU, says he attended the class to try something new that would challenge his regular routine.

“I really like yoga and I would consider myself very athletic, and this class really challenged me to stretch different areas that I don’t usually work out, and to think about the way I use my body when I do workout,” Pinho said.

The instructor allows students to practice poses they are most comfortable with while listening to their bodies. The class ends in a relaxing Shavasna, where the instructor guides students into a peaceful meditation that will make them feel one with their mind, body and soul. During this time, she also encourages students to set an intention for your day or week that will help them find peace of mind.

“Practicing mindfulness or meditation produced beneficial results, with a substantial improvement in areas like negative personality traits, anxiety, and stress,” all of which are issues that college students face on a daily basis, according to a study from the American Psychological Association.

This class helps students that might suffer from anxiety or stress and who are looking for a natural outlet to cope with their stress.

“Mindful Movement” is taught in Memorial Fitness Center on Mondays at 8 p.m., Tuesdays at 10 a.m. and Wednesday at 9:30 a.m.