October at the University of Chicago can be a rough month. It seems early in the quarter but, trust me, you’re already approaching the time when you will begin to feel guilty about not being caught up on class reading (if you haven’t felt this already). And, by the end of this month, your final paper topics should be hashed out (and, if they’re not, your feeling of guilt will increase ten-fold as your professors start reminding you). And, some of you may be overwhelmed with visitors who, thinking you’d be nicely settled in by now, are conveniently coming to stay with you over the weekend your Hegel paper is due (but they booked their flight months ago, so there’s nothing you can do about it).
In the midst of all this, please please please remember to find some time to relax and unwind. There are, obviously, many ways to do this, but I wanted to plug my favorite method (at the risk of continuing to sound super new age)–yoga and meditation.
Places to do it, after the jump…
Hyde Park is, unfortunately, not the best place in the world to find free or donation-based yoga classes, but the classes that are around are cheaper than most other areas of Chicago. The first (and best) option are the yoga classes offered through the FitChicago program at Ratner (the big glass gym on the corner of 55th and Ellis). A new schedule of classes goes out every quarter (Autumn Quarter times can be found here) and they offer beginner and intermediate yoga. A 10-class card will run you $40, but if you do the math, MAPH, that’s only $4 a class, which is extremely affordable for city yoga classes. Also, Nicole, the instructor, is really fantastic. (FitChicago also offers classes other than yoga–boxing, cardio, zumba–if you want to look into another form of stress-relief.)
Another good option is the free meditation sessions in Rockefeller Chapel that run through the academic year. These are a great option if you’re short on cash but still want a place where you can just sit and center yourself for a bit. If you go to the Tuesday morning sessions you can gear up for Core and make everyone jealous with your super-zen attitude. Another perk, they’re held in Rockefeller, which is one of the most beautiful areas of campus. You can find the information here (they also offer 3-session workshops if you’re just getting started with the practice).
Finally, there is a great, actual yoga studio in Hyde Park–Chaturanga Holistic Fitness on 55th Street. Their website has all the information on class schedules, sessions offered, and pricing, but it’s definitely more expensive than the other two options. But, if you’re a die-hard yogi and need a place close by, it might be worth investing in the 20-class pass (students get a 10% discount).
Let me know if you want more information about any of this. I’ve had several of you mention to me that you practice yoga, so I’m sure if you send out an e-mail on maph-etc you can get some people to join you for a class. In the meantime (or if yoga isn’t your thing), we are here, as always, to help keep you sane.