The power of Yoga

By Zaina Salem, Editor in Chief

With spring break approaching, it may be difficult for students to stay motivated for all of the upcoming papers and exams. A way students can de-stress from school work and relax is by taking time to practice yoga.

The University of Akron graduate student Sara Syed teaches yoga regularly and thinks that it is not only a way to exercise and stay in shape, but it is a coping mechanism — especially for college students under a lot of stress.

“I believe that yoga can be for anyone, even if you have never participated in sports or have a physical disability. When I first started yoga I could barely touch my toes, but now I can touch my toes to my head and I never did sports or anything involving physical activity growing up.”

Syed took her first yoga class during her senior year at Cuyahoga Community College.

“With classes like math, science, and psychology, you know exactly what to expect before class. When I signed up for yoga, I didn’t expect to learn about spirituality like I did, now it’s an integrated part of my everyday life,” said Syed.

Syed is currently a certified yoga instructor at LA Fitness.

Syed recalled one of her participants who was closed off after the unfortunate passing of her brother. Syed encouraged her to come to one of her yoga classes and she believes it truly helped her situation. “As a result, she became less angry about what had happened and started viewing life with a different perspective,” Syed said.

Everything  may feel like it’s piling up, but it’s important to not let stress bottle up and affect mood.

“That’s the weird magic about yoga,” Syed said. “It helped me through a dark time in my life as well. It helps create a non-attachment to everything and helps you understand that you have options in life. When you’re on the mat, you have several options for different positions, you can freak out or just relax and take control,” said Syed.

The Student Recreation and Wellness center offers yoga classes every weekday at various times. For more information and schedules visit