Stretching Mind and Body

JU student fitness instructor Robert Bemman teaches the art of yoga. Classes held Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at 5 p.m.

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Christina Kelso

Robert Bemman, sophomore excercise science major, leads students Olivia Patton, senior humanities and geography double major, (front left) Amanda Head, sophomore dental hygiene major (front right) and Kenneth Pasley, sophomore communications major through yoga poses March 27.

As the spring semester comes to its final stretch, yoga could possibly be the stretch that is needed to finish strong.

Yoga is a variety of poses that is used to stretch out the body, which has many benefits. Yoga began as a practice that originated in ancient India and can be looked at as a form of meditation.

With stress being a common concern among college students, Jacksonville University provides yoga for students, staff and faculty in the fitness center every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Classes start at 5 p.m. and last for an hour. Robert Bemman, sophomore exercise science major, is the instructor of the yoga class.

”I started with yoga when I was 17,” Bemman said. ”My mom was a personal trainer, so that kind of affects the stretching effects of it. She went to one of her conventions that was about yoga, and I went with her and fell in love with it.”

Robert Bemman, sophomore excercise science major, stretches before leading his afternoon yoga class.
Robert Bemman, sophomore excercise science major, stretches before leading his afternoon yoga class.

As a yoga instructor, Bemman knows the common misconception of yoga being an easy exercise. This is the primary reason why the exercise is constantly being overlooked by men.

“Yoga is not just for girls, but it’s certainly a girl dominated fitness,” Bemman said. “I feel like I’m making a difference by being a guy yoga instructor.”

With the majority of the student population being athletes, yoga’s benefits should encourage the athletes to attend the classes.

”It’s amazing for running,” Bemman said. “Being able to open your stride more and your muscles being efficient in your ends of motion. Athletes certainly gain a lot from yoga.”

For students who are not involved with sports, benefits of yoga could be seen inside of the classroom.

”When we get into midterms and final exams, my classes are tremendously more for your mind instead of your body,” Bemman said. “It allows you to think clearer.”

”Without yoga, my semester would be long,” said Diamond Williams, sophomore psychology major.