This Week: Yoga Transforms Students and the Learning Theater

| February 13, 2018

You wouldn’t think that you’d find softness and light inside of a darkened black-box style space, but the Smith Learning Theater turns that notion on its head. Literally. I found myself there in Ardha Pincha Mayurasana (or Dolphin Pose) among a group of other folks from the TC community, surrounded by soothing ambient sound and video projections that guided us through explorations of our own energy. We were later led through a meditation, imagining light coursing through ourselves and our world. After the session, I was excited to show off a collection of materials on meditation, yoga, mindfulness, and self care that my colleagues had curated from the Gottesman Libraries’ collections. Having a place to undo your usual orientation in space and check in with yourself can be incredibly refreshing. Today, the Learning Theater helped us do that!

Immersive Yoga Session projection

Silhouettes of participants on the wall projections during today’s Immersive Yoga Session.

The Immersive Yoga Sessions are presented by Student Senate and TC Alumna Erica Barth of Harlem Yoga Studio, which is located on East 125th Street. Her focus for these practices is the idea of Anahata – the heart chakra – and bringing extra attention to what yogis like to call the heart space. It’s not uncommon for people to carry tension in the upper body, especially with the amount of typing and lugging bags of books we tend to do in school environments. Yoga poses that stretch your chest can bring awareness to the heart space, as well as helping to undo that crunching in your shoulders that come with physical and mental stress. I found myself forgetting about things like homework, delayed trains, current events, and running between jobs as I focused my energy on balance, strength, breath, and love. I left the class with a much-needed feeling of openness and steadiness.

A map of the seven chakras above a lotus flower, overlaid with a mandala and the symbol for Om

What participants can expect at Friday’s Immersive Yoga practice. Don’t forget to sign up!

If an all-levels yoga practice in an unconventional setting sounds interesting to you, RSVP for the next session on Friday, February 16 at 3 PM. The class runs for about an hour, though you may hope for more time by the end. Bring your own mat if you can. You may also want to bring a blanket or towel for extra padding if you need a boost or padding from the floor.

We hope to see you there. Namaste!