Students taught to anchor away from stress in free mindfulness and movement classes

Breath. Anchor yourself away from stress. From distraction.

That’s one of the ideas behind online mindfulness and movement classes being offered for free to Pelham middle and high school students by Little Flower Yoga.

The classes help combat some of the added stress that has resulted from being stuck at home because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Sessions for Pelham Middle School and Pelham Memorial High School students are held every Monday via Google Meet from 2:30 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. The link is found in the Monday morning announcement email that students receive.

The classes are taught by Mayuri Gonzalez and her husband Argos, who are Pelham parents and work at Little Flower.

“The thing that I believe is that the pandemic is affecting us all really differently in ways that we understand now, and in ways that we will understand more in the future,” said Mayuri Gonzalez said. “Our lives have changed so dramatically, so even if we don’t feel like we’re stressed, our routines and the predictability in our life has been wrecked.”

Attendance figures for the classes weren’t made available. Some of the short exercises over Google Meets are recorded so that they can be distributed to other students by middle school and high school faculty. The videos are also available to all teachers to play during or in between classes to help center all of the students.

While different exercises are practiced during the sessions, Gonzalez’s personal favorite “anchor breath” allows people to “anchor” themselves away from distraction and stress. This activity can be practiced anywhere.

“Anytime that things change, that’s a big shock for our system, so mindfulness and wellness are… things that we can do to find something that’s steady and predictable inside when the world is not predictable outside,” she said.