De-stressing with the Anthropology Student Association

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Graphic by Alan Li

The life of a student can be extremely stressful, especially with final exams on the horizon.

The Canadian Mental Health Association estimates that 10-20 per cent of Canadian are affected by a mental illness or disorder.

Statistics Canada states that depression peaks during adolescence and early adulthood and experiencing stress increases the risk of depression and suicidal ideation. This means that university students are particularly vulnerable.

One only needs to look to our neighbours at the University of Waterloo to realize that mental health is a real concern among university students, as there were recently demonstrations on campus to call for increased access to mental health services on campus.

Finding ways to deal with stress is an important tool in maintaining mental wellness and one club at Laurier had an idea of how to help students relieve some stress.

On March 16, the Anthropology Student Association (ANSA), a club on the Laurier Waterloo campus, ran a ‘Yoga and Froyo’ event.

It included a one-hour yoga class hosted by Queen Street Yoga in Kitchener, followed by frozen yogurt at Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt in Waterloo.

“We’re students, we’re stressed out, we could use a little relaxation,” Alexandrea Badger, President of ANSA said. Badger is a fourth-year student in Anthropology and Sociology. Yoga and Froyo was chosen with the hope that it would give students a chance to relax and socialize.

Yoga and Froyo was one of the events that was held in place of a trip to the Royal Ontario Museum that ANSA has held in the past.

Five students attended the beginner yoga class at Queen Street Yoga, led by a licensed yoga instructor.

Participants gathered at the yoga studio, where the event’s small size helped create a cozy atmosphere.

The room was filled with energy and laughter, with many of the limitations of a larger yoga class having disappeared.

Badger deemed the event a success despite the low turnout, as it was still a calming afternoon for those in attendance.

“I had a really great time at yoga, it was very de-stressing and [had] a welcoming atmosphere,” Kirstin Corbett, an anthropology and communications student who attended the event said.

After yoga, students made their way to Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt across from Laurier for a sweet treat, courtesy of ANSA. The event was at no cost to students.

“We’re a club for anthropology students, but we’re not exclusive to anthropology students. It’s any students at Laurier who may have an interest in learning about culture or even just want to make friends and join the club to take part in some of that community,” Badger said.

All students are welcome to attend events run by ANSA, whether they are members or not. Other events run by the club include study groups, documentaries, button making and bowling.

Yoga and Froyo was one of the events that was held in place of a trip to the Royal Ontario Museum that ANSA has held in the past. Following decreased interest in recent years, the club decided to use their resources to fund a series of smaller events throughout the year.

“We’re really interested in running events that students want,” Badger said.

ANSA encourages students to approach them with any ideas of events they would like to see run on campus. The club is hoping that more people come out to the next event in the series. There will be an identical event on April 6. Anyone interested is encouraged to RVSP on the ANSA WLU Facebook page.


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