The Recreation Center hosted their fourth annual Yoga Glow event on Monday which promoted positive vibes for students to start their week off on an uplifting note.
This year’s event was noticeably different compared to past Yoga Glow events. Yoga Glow was held at the Student Recreation Center gym instead of its previous home on the seventh floor of University Hall. Participants who had gone to previous events said having the event in University Hall allowed the room to be pitch black, making it a more immersive experience.
However, previous events, like Zumba Glow, have been held in the gymnasium and even though the room was not as dark, people could visibly see the instructors. This is especially helpful for first time yoga-goers to be able to look at the instructor as a point of reference.
The change of location was due to the growing popularity of the event and the need for a bigger space to accommodate everyone. While students could bring their own yoga mats — they were also provided. The great turnout was almost too much as many students filtering in closer to the start time were left without yoga mats and had to perform the poses on the gymnasium floor. Glow-in-the-dark wristbands and necklaces were also provided to participants.
The structure of Yoga Glow was split into two parts with a break in between. The first section had more intensity with the transitions to different poses while the second part focused on restorative exercises to relax and calm the body and mind.
Priscila Pires, a graduate student at Montclair State striving towards her master’s degree in business administration (MBA) led the first section with Danielle Vaccaro, a senior exercise science major. Kendall Wiedow, a junior dance major and Rosemarie Barbalace, a senior family and child studies major, offered assistance while walking around the gym and taking notice of students who were struggling and needed help approaching a pose. After the break, the second section of the yoga class was taught by Wiedow and Barbalace.
“I’m honored to be here with this great turnout to celebrate yoga,” Pires said at the beginning of the yoga class. Pires said that while “bad actions” are getting closer and closer, alluding to the recent bombings in New York and New Jersey, she asked students to keep love in their hearts during these troubling tragedies.
The instructors maintained a safe space and told students they could rest at any time, if they were in pain or needed a break, by going into the child’s pose by sitting back on their heels and letting their upper body relax on the mat with their hands outstretched or by their sides. While the class had its challenges, students said the event was a great workout.
“I thought it was really interesting,” Maria Brucato, a senior psychology major said. “It was pretty intense,” she said, noting that her muscles were definitely hurting by the end.
Other students, like Brianna Colon, shared their views on the intensity of the yoga class. Colon, a freshman psychology major, initially attended the event to fulfill a requirement for her new student seminar class, but learned a lot about yoga in the process.
“I didn’t think yoga would be this hard,” she said, also breaking a sweat during the yoga class. Despite the pain, Colon said that it was a lot of fun and she would be interested in coming back to the Recreation Center to take another yoga class.
All four yoga instructors agreed that there’s a certain stigma surrounding yoga that makes people apprehensive about trying it out for themselves. The glow-in-the-dark aspect of the yoga class brought with it a more enthusiastic, fun vibe, so people could enjoy a yoga class with their friends.
The Recreation Center’s Yoga Glow event was only the beginning to more glow events to come. The Recreation Center is having a full week of glow-in-the-dark events starting on Oct. 3, starting with Zumba Glow and concluding with Laser Tag Glow. More information about these and other events can be found on Hawksync under Campus Rec or on the university website.