Ole Miss student teaches us how to heal our minds — and bodies — through yoga

Halfway through the school’s Mental Health Awareness week, learn about how practicing yoga can benefit your mind and heart.

The week, the University of Mississippi’s ASB, in partnership with Active Minds, is hosting Mental Health Awareness week. The week is a series of events, and one of those is an Anxiety & Meditation Yoga event, hosted by Hollon Beasley. Beasley, a junior at the university and an instructor at Hot Yoga Plus, was asked by friend Kathryn Forbes to help out. For her, saying yes was easy.

“It is very important to me because I used to and sometimes still struggle with anxiety, body image, and slight depression,” said Beasley. “This week is going to show people how they can take care of themselves. If you take care of your body, you will not have to take care of anything else — it just falls into place.”

Beasley also shared how she believes yoga can improve someone’s mental health and overall health. According to her, yoga was created as a meditative practice. One has to learn to meditate for hours before the asana (physical practice) in order to be able to connect their breath with movement. This slows down your heart rate and causes the brain to relax and sleep while conscious. Overall, physical benefits such as muscle toning contribute because it is the safest way to take care of muscles, ligaments, and bones. In addition, heart health benefits greatly as you detoxify the body with meditative breathing.

It is important for the Oxford and the Ole Miss community to get involved, not just this week but in general, and start to take the time to become aware of their own mental health as well. In Beasley’s opinion, “the…community can learn that if they are in a state of depression, anxiety, PTSD, drug addiction…they are not alone. We also want to bring awareness to the health center [on campus], where any student can get help for free. When you get the flu, you go to the doctor. It is the same with your brain — it can get sick also.”

“Take care of yourself so you won’t have to later,” she added. “Our mind deserves some love because we are so hard on ourselves. Practice and all is coming.”

Students and Oxford citizens of all ages are invited to join Hollon Beasley today, April 5, in the Grove at 5:30 p.m. for her workshop. Dr. Kelly Wilson will be there to speak as well.