| 03.18.2018

Finding peace through fitness – Fitness programs on campus, like yoga classes, help students de-stress


As finals week approaches, many students try to do whatever they can to squeeze in some stress relief before exams. For some, that means taking an extra long nap or a Netflix break while others might need the physical intensity of a brisk walk or a trip to the gym.

While some students prefer to de-stress over a work out, University of Idaho Fitness and Wellness Director, Peg Hamlett, said it”s important for students to try different kinds of exercises so they can find the one that works best for them.

Hamlett said UI”s Wellness Program offers a number of different classes as well as personal training opportunities.

“The Wellness Program is a chance for students to take classes for credit or non-credit,” Hamlett said. “The nice thing is all of our instructors here are nationally certified and trained … this way, they”re knowledgeable about how the body works.”

When it comes to decreasing stress through physical fitness, Hamlett said certain personality types need different kinds of exercises to maximize stress relief.

“It is amazing that certain personality types need different exercises,” Hamlett said.

Hamlett said people with Type A personalities or those in high stress fields of study, such as the law program, might find that intense courses, such as cycling work better for them than form intensive courses, such as yoga.

“It is so intense, their minds are working so fast, they need to power through and have a get-a-good-sweat-on type activity,” Hamlett said.

For other personality types, Hamlett said students might find different yoga classes more enjoyable.

“There”s the type of class like sunrise yoga, that”s the type of class to get your day going because it opens all the joints up,” Hamlett said. “It”s a wake-up class – it is about setting the intention for the day.”

Hamlett said the Wellness Program even offers a variety of yoga classes, from a power Vinyasa class to an Ashtanga class.

Corrin Bond | Rawr
A University of Idaho student yoga instructor leads her class through different types of poses.

“Vinyasa means it”s a flowing class, you”re going through a series that”s connected,” Hamlett said. “We have an Ashtanga class that is all about form – it stresses continuous movement and continuous flow.”

In addition to classes such as cycling and yoga, Hamlett said the Wellness Program also offers Tai Chi classes, which revolve around gathering power and releasing negative energy, and a personal fitness class, where students have the opportunity to try a number of different classes throughout the course of the semester.

“When we first opened we made a class called personal fitness,” Hamlett said. “Students sign up for it like a normal class – when they register for it, they purchase a wellness pass and they attend 18 classes for credit.”

Hamlett said the personal fitness class first began as a way to help students experiment with different kinds of physical fitness and find the exercise, or the instructor, that is most cohesive for their personality.

“The reason I wanted that class was it allowed students to try different classes,” Hamlett said. “It also allowed students who have really busy schedules the freedom to be able to pick and choose their schedule based on what they want that week.”

Hamlett said regardless of which exercise students decide to choose, the most important part is that they choose the workout that best benefits them.

“We”re more productive if we take even 50 minutes for ourselves to spend time where we”re not thinking about our homework or to-do list,” Hamlett said. “You come back and think with a fresh perspective – it”s important not just to stay in shape physically, but also mentally.”

Corrin Bond  can be reached at  arg-arts@uidaho.edu

Related Posts
No comments

There are currently no comments to show.