Yoga. For me, it brings to mind images of wild bodily contortions, bald monks, and posh 40-something women clad exclusively in lululemon. I couldn’t have been more wrong. It’s a holistic, aerobic exercise that has numerous benefits, from increased flexibility to weight loss. It can be practiced at almost any level of fitness. And, best of all, it can be learned at Arcadia University.
Every Tuesday and Thursday from 8:50 to 10:10 a.m. in the Arcadia aerobics room, I start my day with the stretches, balancing acts, and strength training of Chinese yoga. Since I was a complete novice at the start of the semester, I enrolled in the beginner’s yoga class, which is offered in several different time slots. It’s the perfect introduction course: no experience or athletic prowess required. An advanced course is also offered, which builds on the skills developed in the beginner’s class.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. Isn’t yoga just a bunch of downward dogs? It’s not cardio and it’s not weightlifting, so what’s the point, really?
In fact, my two weekly yoga sessions are always a couple of the best hours of my week. I enjoy them enough that waking up at 8 in the morning is almost worth it, and being enrolled in a class for credit is the perfect motivator for me to get out of bed and onto the mat.
Obviously, not everyone has enough flexibility in their schedule to devote two whole credits to yoga. But if you’re ever looking for an elective, a way to get in better shape or de-stress, or you’re simply curious about this ancient art, you don’t have to look any further than Arcadia’s aerobics studio.