Spending your Sunday evening doing yoga sounds rather relaxing, doesn’t it? Well, wait until you’ve actually tried it and the word “relaxing” will find a new meaning. But before the relaxing bit comes an hour-long battle between your mind and your body: a battle the art of yoga trains your mind to win!
Sitting through this one class, I felt the urge to join the fun. There was something very calm about this particular brand of fun; perhaps it was Master Yogaraj CP’s music or the steady breathing all those practising were careful to maintain. Towards the end of the class, despite not being a participant, I felt like I had been through all the stretches or aasanaas and I was eagerly awaiting the Master’s famous 15-minute cool-down session. Despite its brevity, this 15-minute session puts one in a therapeutic, meditative state instantly and when the Master finally rings a bell as reminder that class has ended, one feels rejuvenated and at peace, as opposed to exhausted and restless.
There were students of various fitness levels who joined the class-some of them were practising Yoga for the very first time, in fact. John DUMAS from France, for instance, is a Year 5 Computer Science student who resides in Lee Shau Kee Hall (Hall 6). When asked about his experience as a first-timer, he says, “I feel more flexible, despite a few pains sometimes. This is a very interesting experience and I quite like it. Especially at the end of the class, I feel very good!”
Another first-time practitioner, Taya CHENG of Jockey Club Academy Hall (Hall 4), studying Information Management in her 4th Year, said, “I find my flexibility improving every class, and outside of the yoga class, the quality of my sleep has improved- I sleep better after doing yoga and for even a few days following that.”
We also have among us a few seasoned yogis who have been practising Yoga with our Yoga Guru-in-Residence since many semesters. Jack YEUNG (Jockey Club Academy Hall, Year 3, Construction Engineering & Management) joined this class some time last year as it supplements his other sport activities. He also attended CityU Yoga Day two years in a row and loved them both. Through his one year of yoga practice, Jack said he has observed a few changes, “I think I’m a lot more relaxed, overall. I’m also more focused- my grades have improved. Besides studying hard, yoga really helps in that respect.” Jack would recommend this class to other residents, he says, because he believes it is a very refreshing experience.
Ellen DING (Alumni Civility Hall, Year 2, Global Business Systems Management) is another one of our own seasoned yogis. Ellen said her flexibility has increased while her muscle tension has decreased over the last year of practising yoga in the Student Residence. She said, “What’s different about this class is that it is more spiritual. Master Yogaraj brings an Indian style to class and it’s more than yoga-it is also meditation. The very best thing about it is doing it on Sunday evenings!”
Having witnessed the class and spoken to its participants, I can say that Student Residence’s brand of Healthy Yoga is truly one to experience. Our residents surely bear testimony to that!
Writer: Sadhika NANDA (Residence Tutor, Hall 11)
Photographer: Yikki LAM (Lee Shau Kee Hall)
無論有沒有健身習慣的同學均樂在其中，有些還是第一次練瑜伽呢! 李兆基堂的John DUMAS是大五的法國交流生，主修電腦科學。第一次嘗試瑜伽的他這樣形容：「我覺得身體變得靈活了，縱使有時候會有點痛。但我挺喜歡這個有趣的體驗。特別是完堂後，整個人很舒服！」
文: Sadhika NANDA (舍堂十一導師)
攝: 林奕淇 (李兆基堂)