Yoga: A way to wind down and relax


Nathan Kwapisz/NW

RELAX – Grace Rieger holds yoga classes each week on Wednesday from 7-8 p.m. The class is a great way to start a healthy lifestyle and meet like-minded people.

Nathan Kwapisz

Devon Dickerson is a dance major and attended his first yoga class this semester. He attended with the hope that yoga would help him find himself after a draining day of college and returning back to a calm state.

“I think it’s good to kind of get out of that … grind [of] classes over and over and over again,” Dickerson said. “It’s a good way to break up the monotony of college.”

Dickerson enjoys that he can reset and relax during the semester when it is at its busiest point. Dickerson said one of the reason he found out about the yoga classes was through his friend, Lyla Horn, another student at NMU who enjoys attending yoga classes.

For Horn, yoga is a way to relax and wind down but also spend time with friends.

“It’s a yoga session that my friend Grace Rieger teaches every Wednesday from seven to eight,” Horn said. “It’s beginner style yoga which is really nice.”

Horn has been coming to Rieger’s classes for a while as she likes to support her friend.

“It’s really relaxing for the end of the semester … [Rieger] is really calm and respectful and reassures you that you’re comfortable with yoga,” Horn said.

Horn also enjoys participating in Mindful Healing Movement Yoga because of the safe environment the class and the instructor provides. Horn started practicing yoga when she was about 16 and believes there are many benefits associated with the activity.

“I found so much solace physically and mentally that I wanted to help others find that as well,” Horn said.

Rieger, a psychology major at NMU, has been doing yoga for a very long time and wanted to share the benefits of yoga with her fellow students and community members. Yoga is special to Rieger because it is tailored personally to the person doing it.

“It’s so individual and it’s not about competing with others,” Rieger said. “It’s purely about meeting your body and mind where you’re at that moment, and every day that looks a little different. So it’s completely tailored to what you’re feeling and how you’re doing at that moment.”

Rieger believes yoga provides a very healthy outlet for stress that can provide healthy habits and stability into college students’ routines. She feels that there are not enough outlets promoting a healthy lifestyle for students physically or mentally.

Rieger is very excited to see that her class is developing into a consistent community and that her students are participating in her class actively with their busy college schedules. Rieger welcomes anyone who would like to participate in her class to go on the NMU Rec Sports website and sign up. Her classes are on Wednesdays from 7-8 p.m. every week.

“I’ve been really humbled and excited about the participation that I’ve seen even in this last semester,” Rieger said. “People who are 18 and 19 are coming to class every week and prioritizing their mental health and I think that speaks a lot to the needs and the motivation of students.”