With new social distancing protocols in place, Northport High School is exploring unique ways to continue their physical education program for both in-person and remote students. One of the most impactful classes thus far has been yoga, which is providing students with both the physical and mental support they need this school year.
The yoga classes are not only good for physical strength and flexibility, but can help with anxiety, stress, depression and sleeping. “Yoga is good for the mind and good for the body” shared Ms. Gipp, Northport High School’s yoga teacher. “My goal is for students to leave feeling a little lighter, a little bit more relaxed.”
Ms. Gipp further described yoga as a great time for students to gain a better understanding of their own mental health. By taking time to slow down and focus on movement and breath, students may suddenly become aware of any feelings of anxiety or stress they were feeling. Recognizing these emotions then allows them to take steps to improving their mental health.
The classes are being livestreamed, so students learning from home can follow along with the flow and movements being taught. Classes are currently focused on vinyasa flow style yoga, however Ms. Gipp noted that she is looking to introduce restorative yoga and some mediation practices as well. When speaking about teaching her remote students, Ms. Gipp noted that while there were originally some kinks to work out, such as making sure student cameras were placed so she could adequately see their positions and form, the remote students have been incredibly engaged in the class.