Relaxation Station is a free resource for students to unwind from the stress of college life at any point during the academic year. To visit the station, students can make an appointment or walk-in to the Student Health Services Office.
The Relaxation Station offers a massage chair, aromatherapy and white noise machine. Moreover, at the station students can learn relaxing breathing techniques as well as use coloring pages and relaxing rocks to calm down after the stressful week. These resources are available for students as often as they want for up to 45 minutes a day.
Health Educator Lori Marti said students can bring their own relaxing music while using the massage chair.
“If they don’t have the music or if they don’t choose to bring it with them, we have a white noise machine that blocks out any of the external environmental noises from our office,” said Marti.
Students can visit the station with friends. Marti said while students use the massage chair, friends can use coloring pages and relax as well.
Massage chairs are wiped after each visitor.
“I think it’s important, right now especially, since we’re at the height of colds and flu season and a lot of times that kind of an infection is spread from touching a contaminated surface and then touching your eye or mouth,” said Marti. “When someone is done in the relaxation station, our student workers go in there and they wipe everything down.”
In addition to the above mentioned resources, students can study in front of the day light lamps.
“We have a light that students can study in front of and see if it helps,” said Marti. “This can be used as a way to address seasonal affective disorder or what’s sometimes called the winter blues.”
According to Marti, the Relaxation Station is a student-initiated, grant-funded service.
“This is a service to students. Ten years ago, we had student volunteers and a couple of our peer educators who wrote a grant and applied for funding to purchase the supplies,” said Marti. “So the first two students wrote a grant and were funded from the North Central College Health Association.”
To receive the grant, student volunteers looked at the Minnesota State students data and found that students had high stress levels. Findings also suggested a massage chair and aromatherapy had a great effect on stress reduction.
“We asked students ‘Where’s your stress level’ on a scale of one to four Likert scale, before they use it and after they use the chair,” said Marti. “And there was a statistically significant lowering of stress, once they used the services through the Relaxation Station so we know that it was helping students.”
The station is located at the Student Health Services Office in Carkoski Commons room 100. Students are welcome to walk-in or make an appointment to use the Relaxation Station at a convenient time throughout the semester.
Header photo: The Relexation Station is a place for students to unwind from the stress of college. To visit the station, students can schedule appointments via appointment or walk-in at the Student Health Services Office. (Dominic Bothe/The Reporter)
Write to Amalia Sharaf at email@example.com