The demands of college life can often lead to a sedentary lifestyle, with little or no physical activity. When balancing course workloads, family and school commitments and daily stress, college students may face physical and mental health issues that can impact their experience.

Ryan Grove, who serves as assistant athletic trainer and strength and conditioning coordinator in Edinboro Athletics, secured a grant to open free, inclusive yoga sessions to combat these issues.

“With an aim to promote healthy living, we plan to organize yoga fitness sessions to aid students, staff and faculty with general mental and physical wellness,” Grove said. “Research suggests yoga may help individuals with stress management, mental and emotional health and sleep, as well as strength, balance and flexibility.”

Thanks to a grant from the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties Health and Welfare Fund, Edinboro now offers these sessions from 6:15 – 7:15 p.m., every Monday in Pogue Student Center Room G47. The 2023-2024 academic year marks the second grant cycle for yoga at Edinboro.

The grant for the sessions is part of the Healthy Lifestyle Initiative to fund risk-reduction activities that include programming for weight reduction, healthy eating, exercise and stress reduction.

All members of the Edinboro campus community are welcome to attend, with mats provided for those who cannot bring their own.

Mary Soboleski, the lead yoga instructor for Studio 99 Yoga & Wellness in Edinboro, specializes in power yoga and leads the Edinboro sessions. Her aim is to teach skills to increase flexibility, improve balance, strengthen muscles, deepen focus and relaxation and promote healthy habits.

The goal of the yoga sessions is to aid students, staff and faculty in reducing fatigue and improving energy levels, while keeping them active, alert and focused and consequently improving decision-making and productivity.

No experience is required to participate, as the instructor is trained in providing modifications for all poses to ensure individuals of various levels of experience can participate safely and effectively.

As a strength and conditioning professional, Grove knows the empirical evidence of yoga’s benefits to athletes. He said that faculty and staff participation grew exponentially last year as more individuals found benefits beyond athleticism.

Yoga improves flexibility, mobility, balance, coordination and core strength and stabilization through fundamental movements – commonly used in the weight room, and in practice or competition,” he said. “Yoga also teaches relaxation techniques, relieves stress and tension, helps build mental resilience and can help support healthy sleep patterns, which are all important areas to address in a well-rounded training program.”

For more information about yoga at Edinboro, contact Grove at