Join in Coffs Harbour's biggest yoga class

Published 26 April 2016

Coffs Harbour yoga fans are being called on to take part in the city’s biggest yoga class at Southern Cross University’s sport centre on Thursday, April 28.

The event is a joint initiative of the University and the Coffs Harbour Women’s Health Centre in partnership with local yoga schools and is aimed at celebrating and promoting the importance of health and wellbeing for both body and mind. It is being presented by internationally renowned yoga teacher Simon Borg-Olivier.

Rachael Jones, a student engagement and wellbeing counsellor, said the initiative was part of the University’s focus on promoting positive mental health and wellbeing.

“SCU’s Wellbeing program is all about supporting our students to be successful at University and in their life by providing opportunities to learn about and look after their mental and physical health,” Ms Jones said.

The statistics around mental health are concerning with one in five (20 per cent) Australians experiencing a mental illness in any year (commonly anxiety or depression), with higher rates in young people 18 -24 years (26 per cent), and even higher rates with university students (80 per cent).

“There is a lot of new research showing the benefits of yoga for wellbeing. Yoga supports the connection between physical and mental health through physical poses, relaxation and breathing practices. The benefits of a regular yoga practice can be an increased capacity to manage stress, as well as improve mood, energy levels, and general physical functioning,” Ms Jones said.

Simon Borg-Olivier is a co-director of Yoga Synergy, one of Australia’s oldest and most respected yoga schools. The Yoga Synergy style is based on a deep understanding of yoga anatomy, yoga physiology and traditional Hatha Yoga. Simon has been teaching since 1982 and is a registered physiotherapist, a research scientist and a university lecturer.

“I look at the yoga exercises as a model for life,” Simon said. “In life there are stresses all the time and you have to learn how to deal with them. In yoga you put your body through artificially induced stressful situations and you learn how to deal with them in a controlled environment. If I come across something stressful, I say to myself ‘breathe and just do it like you would a yoga pose: one step at a time’.”

The ‘Coffs Biggest Yoga Class’ will be held on Thursday, April 28. Doors open at 3.30pm for a 4pm start. All members of the public are welcome to attend. Cost $5 per person, bring your own yoga mat.

Tickets are available online at Sticky Tickets or check out the Facebook Event Page

Photo: Simon Borg-Oliver.

Media contact: Brigid Veale head of Communications and Publications, Southern Cross University, 02 66593006 or 0439 680 748.