Ohio State fitness instructors practice yoga in Aug. 2018 at the RPAC. Credit: Courtesy of Ohio State Office of Student Life

A new fitness workshop on campus will teach students to bring balance to their lives, as well as their chakras, through a 90-minute yoga flow.

The Recreational Sports Department will present Finding Your Balance: Chakra Exploration Workshop Sunday to demonstrate various yoga poses and breath work that connect to each chakra. The event will also explain the psychology and history connected to the belief of chakras.

The class will be a beginners guide to the chakras, educating participants on the root, pelvic, navel, heart, throat, third eye and crown chakras and how to tap into each one, Alice Adams, group fitness programming and education manager, said.

“Each chakra has different things connected to it, like creativity, joy, heart-openers, all of those things,” Adams said. “This class will look at how this manifests in your body and how it manifests in your everyday life and the energy that goes with each chakra. It will hopefully help [participants] come into more balance in their practice and life.”

Chakras originated from the ancient Indian belief in seven centers of energy throughout the body, Adams said. According to the belief, the body contains energetic pathways that align down the center of the spine at each chakra point. Adams said she hopes participants will be able to feel the energetic benefits of what she refers to as “balancing your chakras.”

Adams said the main goal of these workshops is to teach students mindfulness and the ways in which yoga connects to spirituality. She said she believes yoga is an ideal form of movement to explore spirituality because it moves at a slower pace than most other exercises.

“There’s more opportunities to pause and to take a breath and reflect and to notice how the mind, body and breath are maybe working together,” Adams said. “Yoga emphasizes that mind-body connection and has you really explore where the mind reacts and where it’s going and sort of actively practicing being present.”

Leah Stein, a third-year in nutritional sciences, has been teaching yoga classes at Ohio State for five semesters and will be instructing the Chakra Exploration Workshop. Stein said she is fascinated by the way chakras are connected to yoga’s history and the different energy levels throughout the body.

“I think [the workshop] is mostly about seeing that yoga is a lot more than just the physical practice,” Stein said. “There’s a lot more to it than just going through the motions and moving your body. It’s more of finding your foundation and connecting with yourself and connecting with your highest self. So it’s more of a self-reflection and becoming more in tune with yourself rather than the physical aspects of yoga.”

The Recreational Sports Department offers various yoga workshops every semester, each focusing on one specific component of yoga that may need some additional attention, Adams said.

This workshop will be the fourth installment of the Recreational Sports Department’s five-part yoga series. The three previous classes included Meditation and Mellow Beats; Dare to Fly! Arm Balance and Inversion Yoga Workshop; and Hips Don’t Lie: How to Release Emotional Storage in the Body. The final workshop, scheduled for Nov. 10, will be Relax to the Max: Stress Relief Yoga Workshop, and will focus on deep relaxation and stress relief, Adams said.

The Sunday workshop is designed for beginners and experienced yogis alike, Adams said. She suggested arriving about 10 to 15 minutes early to claim a spot. Participants are only required to bring their BuckID.

“You’ll walk away from this workshop, hopefully, with just a better understanding of your body, your mind and your energy,” Adams said. “And then you can then use that knowledge to be your best self outside of yoga.”

The Finding Your Balance: Chakra Exploration Workshop is 1:30-3 p.m. Sunday in room B134 of the RPAC.