Griffith students and staff are being encouraged to hit the pool for a free meditation session on RUOK? Day this Thursday September 12.
Australian swimmer Jade Edmistone will guide a session on using pool meditation to de-stress and unwind at Griffith University’s Gold Coast campus as part of the university’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Week.
Edmistone, who suffers from bipolar disorder, will also deliver a motivational presentation about managing her personal mental health at the Aquatic Centre, before leading the pool meditation.
The swimmer said anyone who is confident and feels safe in an aquatic environment can benefit from pool meditation.
“Being in the water is an immensely rewarding opportunity to practice mindfulness,” Edmistone said.
“By performing a series of specific drills and exercises that require focused attention to control your body and its movement, you will transform a regular visit to the pool into an immersive form of active meditation.”
Edmistone said it does not require swimming laps, so swimming ability is not a limiting factor and can be done in shallow water for those who are not as confident in deeper water.
“Research shows that meditation can help you better handle negative feelings and emotions and can also reduce depression and anxiety as well as help manage chronic pain,” she said.
“This activity seeks to bring focused attention to the present moment with self-compassion and without judgement.”
Griffith Student Services event co-ordinator Pam Bradshaw said the activity was a key part of Mental Health and Wellbeing Week.
“It provides a great opportunity for students to engage with inspiring activities, raising their awareness of the mental health and wellbeing support and resources available to them during their time with Griffith,” Ms Bradshaw said.
“Students will hear about Jade’s lived experience with depression and bi-polar, her fight back to health as she’s navigated the difficult transition from elite sport to “normality”.
Edmistone will hold two sessions, one from 11.30am-12.30pm and the second at 1pm-2pm. Both will include a short motivational presentation and the guided pool meditation.
It is free for both students and staff and no registration is required.