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As Finals Approach, Find A (Better) Work/Play Balance With Physical Activity

Courtesy of Saints Athletics
Written by Hill News Staff

As the school year begins to wind down and the stress levels begin to rise with upcoming finals and papers, strengthening the mind and body and finding that balance between the two is key for success. It can be easy to sit in the library or study room for hours on end, rarely leaving for fear of poor grades and the buildup of studying (cramming for that diversity credit that was actually much harder than expected.) As a result, sugary and caffeinated drinks, unhealthy food, and low activity could be used to cope with high stress levels.

However there are other options! A simple run, breath of fresh air, and time in the sun can be outlets for frustration while also benefiting overall health and test scores. Studies have shown that added pressure and poor health habits in times of increased stress, such as finals week, can lead to lower test scores. It is known that chronic daily stressors have long term effects on the brain’s learning and memory region, but short-term stress around the end of the year can also impair learning.

It’s important to stop, take a step back, and find a way to release new tensions and stress. Although it is the end of the year, St. Lawrence still has many athletic resources to help release endorphins, improve academic performance, and allow for fun experiences in the final weeks of school! So while you buckle down for finals, maybe try some of these options!

Yoga: SLU Club Yoga allows for a peaceful hour to disconnect from your cell phone, computer, and other assignments. With almost daily classes, the skilled and experienced student instructors create an environment that is calm, restful, and meditative. No yoga experience is needed. If you are as flexible as a brick and can’t even touch your toes, laying on your mat in child’s pose is wholeheartedly welcomed! Join the SLU Club Yoga Facebook page for daily updates and opportunities to de-stress!

Augsbury Swimming Pool: This aquatic option allows for wonderful study breaks found every day of the week, with varying hours on the weekends. Swim laps in the pool with friends or alone from 12-2 p.m. or 7-9 p.m. Monday through Friday or 12:30- 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. If you feel that the stress of school will sink you down to the watery depths of the abyss, have no fear! Lifeguards are always on duty!

The Canoe Shack: Ever want to take a laid-back river journey down the Grasse River with friends or a significant other? Look no further! With leaves budding and green vegetation beginning to sprout along the river’s edge, there is hardly a more peaceful outdoor activity than this canoeing adventure. The water is flat, the weather is warming, and the workers at the canoe shack are ready for you! One worker even has a Siberian Husky puppy who loves to makes friends!

Outing Club and Outdoor Program List Server: The wonderful and outdoory people of the OC and OP are ready to take you on any sort of adventure to pull your mind away from the SLU Bubble! Whether it is stargazing, hiking, or an overnight camping trip, opportunities to destress are endless. Take advantage and try something new!

If none of these options sound appealing, renting a bike from the Science Library, roller blading, or going for a jog on the Kip trail are also wonderful and relaxing alternatives. Head on down to the rope swing or around the town of Canton! Our time at St. Lawrence is winding down for the year, and stress levels are high, so take time for yourself in a way that allows you to care for your body while seeing what our campus has to offer!

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Hill News Staff