NECC Observer

The student news website of Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

Yoga-to try it

NECC starts monthly yoga sessions

women siting on the floor with one leg close to her body and she has her hands around the leg Photo by Mariella Mendez

Cameron beginning her yoga session

Not only is Amy Cameron the Academic Preparation and ESL coordinator at Northern Essex, but she also teaches yoga. Karen Hruska was the coordinator of the event that happened Feb. 27. A yoga session was held at The Hub in the student center, and was open to all faculty, students and staff. The email that was sent out specified that it was “Gentle yoga for all levels” and “Beginners welcome.” The email included a “why” section and explained that the purpose was to “improve strength, flexibility, focus, and stress-management skills.”

At the yoga session, Cameron walked around and help students set up their yoga mats, many of which she provided. Before starting, she made sure everyone was comfortable and had what they needed. Staff made sure to clear the Hub space which allowed plenty of room for the participants to move freely. Due to the high window covered ceilings, a lot of natural light poured into the room making it a peaceful and calm space for yoga. Students were suggested to wear clothes that allow them to move and many of them came prepared with yoga mats and athletic wear. She began by introducing herself and reiterating that they would be learning “flexibility exercises and relaxation methods.” The session began with some simple meditation, as the participants were asked to lay on their backs with their eyes closed. Cameron sat in the front with her eyes closed, and asked the participants to clear their minds of any stressful thoughts as she began her session.

A few students around campus shared their thoughts about this event. Katherine Hailson, 21, Liberal Arts: Writing Major shared that she was not aware of this event but would be open to attending in the future.

She says that, “yoga is great and would definitely have a positive impact on the students who regularly attend.” Hailson expresses the importance of providing access to free yoga classes because they “tend to be expensive.” She also suggested to bring back meditation sessions, saying, “I know that a few semesters ago we had a meditation group on campus that I did attend once, but the space it was offered in was rather uninviting and I chose not to go again.” Hailson also brought up the fact that clubs and events always seem to interfere with her class schedule and that there have been many events on campus that she has missed out on due to lack of advertisement.

Melanie Polanco, 19, Communications major says, “Yoga isn’t my thing at all but I’m sure if students enjoy yoga, then it will impact them, I think it’s cool that they’re doing yoga for everyone.” Polanco mentioned that she worked with kids and there were many events in which yoga instructors would visit and do yoga with the children. Polanco suggests that, “more things can definitely be done to promote stress relieving activities, for example they can keep doing the destress fest, that they’ve done in the past.”

The yoga session will be held monthly at NECC and will be instructed by Amy Cameron. For any questions about this event you may contact her at acameron@necc.mass.edu or Karen Hruska at khruska@necc.mass.edu.