Rest & relaxation: four places to relax near the campus

Illustrated by Andrea Gomez

By Sarah Bartos 10/05/21 10:26 PM

During the mid-season, it is important to prioritize mental and physical well-being while ensuring that all of your papers are cited and that your benzene rings are perfectly drawn. Here are Thresher’s suggestions for places or options to relax and unwind off campus.

The “cult of the occupation” is a mindset that tends to take over during the semester, particularly during the mid-semesters and finals season. However, it is imperative that you take the time to relax, pay attention to the present, and check in with yourself. Hopefully, these few places and things to do will give you time to practice relaxation and self-care.

Work on your stress with yoga

One activity that is the epitome of holistic wellness and health is yoga. This activity has attracted the attention of doctors, psychologists and other members of the wellness community for helping relieve symptoms of psychological stress. If you are interested in yoga, there are several yoga studios on campus. Black swan yoga is a non-profit hot yoga studio located in the Heights, Western University and Midtown, offering a range of yoga classes for beginners and experienced yogis alike. They also offer online courses. For those who don’t want to commit, the studio offers a limited free trial. DEFINE body and mind is another option for yoga classes. What DEFINE does differently from traditional studios is that they offer a hammock yoga class. This studio is located in River Oaks and offers studio memberships at a monthly cost and online classes.

Create in a local pottery workshop

Take a break from drawing organic chemistry structures and create something for yourself. I’m a terrible artist, but I’ve found that drawing, writing, organizing Spotify playlists, being creative, in general is a great way to relax. Pottery is a unique artistic option, and Violet glazed pottery in Rice Village is a great place to paint various ceramic pieces. You can choose from over 200 pieces of pottery to paint and have an unlimited supply of painting and art tools. After you finish your masterpiece, it takes about five days to bake and glaze.

Take a day at the spa

The prototype personal care day at home is a face mask with fresh cut cucumbers over your eyes (which will eventually be removed to enjoy your “New Girl” or “Grey’s Anatomy” marathon). But what if you don’t want a DIY version? Face Haus, a ‘face bar’, takes personal care to the next level, offering a wide variety of complete facials and other skin care products for all of your skin care needs. Face Haus’s prime location next to Starbucks in Rice Village offers guests the option to grab a coffee on the way out. In the same way, Thai healing massage center offers top-notch massages at West University Place. Their various spa and massage services are priced according to time and treatment.

Relax with coffee and a cat

What is the antithesis of a stressful environment? Anywhere with kittens. Cafe El Gato is Houston’s first and only cat cafe. They offer a wide variety of coffee and tea drinks and have cats and kittens that customers can interact with. Due to COVID regulations, you must book a group session in advance.

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