Issue 9
Monday, 05 November 2018
Charles Darwin University
Ramya Ramamoorthi uses yoga to bend the pressure paradigm
Ramya Ramamoorthi uses yoga to bend the pressure paradigm

Lining up chakras to ease exam stress

By Andrew Hall

Associate lecturer in anatomy and PhD candidate Ramya Ramamoorthi has used her expertise as a yoga instructor to help ease stress and anxiety that students can suffer in the lead-up to exams. 

Last month about 50 students from the College of Health and Human Sciences joined Ramya in a yoga class aimed at balancing their sympathetic and para-sympathetic nervous systems, which also acted as a practical way of understanding the human body’s autonomic nervous system. 

“At this time of the year, with exams approaching and adding to the normal anxieties of modern life, the sympathetic nervous system – which is our ‘fight or flight’ system – becomes overly activated by stress,” Ramya said.

“Yoga is a practical way to stimulate the para-sympathetic nervous system – that stimulates the body’s rest and relaxation responses – which allows people to start to unwind.”

Ramya said yoga practice had not been used at CDU before to try to specifically target and reduce stress.

“The students all said they enjoyed the session and felt that it had the desired outcome of helping them become more composed, while remaining focussed on the tasks of studying and taking their exams,” she said.

“With the success of this class, I am looking at perhaps making it a regular event in the lead-up to each semester’s revision period.”