MINSTER — From lowering blood pressure to improving the immune system’s function, better health could be one half hour of quiet away.
Minster’s Center for Personal Wellness recently launched meditation classes. The sessions, led by Laura Roetgerman, explore different facets of meditation, from deep breathing, to progressive muscle relaxation, to body scanning or guided meditation. She said her goal is to teach what meditation is and the benefits of the specific technique of that night, and to teach the experience well, where it would be simple to reenact the technique.
“We get into a place with a calm mind and calm body,” Roetgerman said.
Roetgerman said she first learned about meditation in a graduate level class while completing her master’s degree in Cincinnati, a class where she also learned about hypnosis and other practices that could help people with mental and physical health problems.
Roetgerman had been dealing with the death of her father and found the practice useful in alleviating some of the side effects of the difficult time. As she learned more about the research surrounding meditation, Roetgerman said it was eye opening to see the benefits of the mind-body practice.
“There’s tons of research that it reduces blood pressure, heart rate, lowers cortisone levels, decreases tension and pain,” she said. “It’s good for insomnia or to increase alertness and improve the immune system and emotional stability. Also it develops intuition.”
One advantage of meditating is that a person can take it anywhere. Roetgerman said she there was a park with a hilly area and with a tree where she liked to go in Cincinnati to practice meditation to gain clarity, peace and quiet.
“It means different things to different people,” she said.
While some people meditate twice a day for a half hour at a time, others are more sporadic about the practice. Most regular meditators have a dedicated space to sit or lay for the experience, Roetgerman added.
There’s no special clothing required, just that the person is comfortable and a person can do it at any time. Roetgerman leads an ongoing class at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, although there may be a week of break this summer at some point. People can drop in for $10, or get a pass for six classes for $45 or 12 classes for $75. Roetgerman said there’s no requirement to use the pass consecutively; the passes don’t expire. People don’t have to register in advance, although it’s a favor to her if they do so she has a head count.
For more information, find the Center for Personal Wellness on Facebook or call 419-501-2351.