Last month I was fortunate enough to experience a very special event here at Renmin University of China!
For anyone who knows me, it is no secret that I love yoga. Although I am not a diligent yogi by any stretch of imagination, I do enjoy my occasional personal practice. So when I was offered the chance to join our university’s yoga club in creating this very special event, I jumped at the opportunity!
We had a very special visit from Yogi Yoga, which is a local yoga studio here in Haidian district. Their main focus is on yoga for well being – with them you won’t find crazy hot yoga or challenging couples yoga or be strapped onto a trapeze under the ceiling, but you will be introduced to tried and true techniques and exercises. Many of the teachers are educated in India, at some of the traditional schools there, and are eager to pass on their knowledge of this age-old wisdom to their students.
The reason for their visit was an annually recurring campaign to counteract the almost epidemic trend of suicide among college students in China. For this campaign, the yoga studio sends teachers to host events at universities around Beijing. The teacher taught us some different exercises to reduce anxiety and depression and talked a bit about the use of meditation for mental health. I didn’t understand much of what was said, but enough to get the general idea of most of the concepts. The event was also attended by several deans and head teachers from the different schools at Renmin.
We were very happy with how the event turned out, even though we were a bit pressed for time, both while setting up and packing down.
If you want to try some yoga for your own well-being at home, I recommend looking at Youtube for video instructions on beginner friendly yoga that you can do on your own time.
A video I have used often to reduce anxiety here.
Videos to help you cope with depression here, here and here.
If you are in China and struggling with thoughts of self harm or suicide, call one of these numbers for immediate counseling!
Beijing Suicide Research and Prevention Center Hotline 0800-810-1117 OR 010-8295-1332
Lifeline Shanghai (21) 63798990
Lifeline Yanji (0433) 273 9595
Mon-Sun 08:00 – 16:00