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Exercise body and mind for a strong exam game

Mid-year exams are rapidly approaching, so now is a great time to get yourself a solid exercise plan to help keep those stress levels down when exams do roll around.  


Mental benefits of Exercise

We know you’ve probably heard it before, but here’s a wee reminder of how daily exercise (no matter how small) can help your study game: 

  • Improves your cognitive health – you can think, learn and problem solve better when you’re in good mental and physical health 
  • It can improve your memory, that’s certainly helpful! 
  • It can help reduce anxiety, be that exam specific or in general life
Physical benefits of exercise 

There are loads of physical benefits including managing health conditions, disease and bodyweight.   But did you know that you’ll also:

  • Sleep better – it can help you fall asleep faster, more deeply and for longer.  Just be careful not to exercise too close to bedtime, or it may perk you up too much to sleep 
  • Improve your mood – it amps up your happy hormones, helping you to feel better about yourself, lowering stress and anxiety 
  • Feel more energetic – those hormones again!  As your heart and lung health improves, daily tasks will feel easier 

Putting all that together, it seems a no-brainer to prioritise daily movement to flood your body with happy hormones and reap the mental benefits for more successful study. 

How much for health?

Not as much as you think!  If your goal is to improve your brain game, then:

  • 150mins per week of moderate activity (intentional brisk walk, biking, or swimming or
  • 75mins per week of vigorous activity (running, heavy lifting, aerobics/group fitness) 
  • Ideally, a couple of strength training sessions per week wouldn’t go amiss.    

Spread these minutes over the week preferably, and you’re looking at 30mins a day across five days.  If 30mins at once is still a bit daunting, then break it up into 10min snacks across the day.  Too easy!    

If you have a more specific goal, such as weight loss or performance related, then you’ll need a bit more than that.      

Not sure where to start? 
  • Keep it simple – a walk around the block is perfect
  • Check out the on demand section of the UC Rec&Sport app, currently free to all UC Students.  There’s a big range of styles in there ( Barre, HIIT, Yoga, kickboxing….) and session lengths starting at just 10mins.   Bonus – our livestreaming will be reconnected soon, so you can join in our RecCentre classes from wherever you are
  • Get some free advice from our staff – book a spot via the app in the fitness services section.  We have 15min slots available to show you around the gym, answer any questions, or show you how to get the most out of your app.    You can even do this remotely,  just select the ‘livestream option’ when selecting your timeslot. 
  • Finally, you could check out our YouTube channel, where we have some excellent classes saved for you to play again and again

To access the app, you’ll need to do two things: 

  1. Get your UC RecCentre membership online  
  2. Download the Rec&Sport app

Please use your UC student email for BOTH, it’ll make it easier for our Bot to connect the accounts and get you started.  It can take up to 48hours, please contact us if you still aren’t connected after that. 

Ngā mihi
UC Rec&Sport | Te Ratonga Hākinakina 



Student deal on Crusaders tickets

As part of our partnership with the Crusaders we have a student ticket deal $12.50

Crusaders vs. Fijian Drua

Friday 20 May at 7.05pm

Link below to purchase here. 


The benefits of keeping active

The mid-semester break isn’t just a good time to reset and catch up on your studies – it’s also a great time to form new exercise habits. Regular activity helps you feel healthier and less stressed, allowing you to be at your best for your studies.

Te Ratonga Hākinakina | UC Rec and Sport

With classes running throughout the break, pop into Te Ratonga Hākinakina | UC Rec Centre to join in on spin, Zumba or even yoga classes. You can view the full timetable and book in here or via the UCGO app>

Not keen to sweat it out in a group? Your Canterbury Card enables you to visit the gym anytime during opening hours:
Monday to Friday, 6am – 9pm
Saturday/Sunday, 9am – 5pm

With a range of facilities (including an indoor rock climbing wall, a dedicated women’s training space, two large court spaces and a squash court), make the most of your free student membership. You also have the option for a personalised exercise consult at a discounted cost.

Intro to Exercise Programme

Feeling a bit intimidated by the gym? Te Ratonga Hākinakina’s Intro to Exercise programmes give you the chance to try a range of activities with other students who want to try something new. Over five weeks, you’ll have access to over 50 sessions, ranging from team sports to hill walks.

Free for UC students, sign up now>

Join a Sports Team

Whether you’re into ultimate Frisbee or cheerleading, there are a range of UC Sport and Recreation clubs to get involved with. Check out the full list here>

Get Outdoors

Feeling stuck on an assignment? Sometimes all it takes to get your brain moving is a bit of fresh air. Ōtautahi is known as the garden city for good reason, with a huge range of beautiful green spaces to enjoy, including the nearby Riccarton BushBotanic Gardens or Mona Vale. Even a five minute stroll along UC’s Okeover Stream can do the trick!

If you’re looking to go further afield, ChristchurchNZ have put together a fantastic list of walks to explore>

Eating Well

You can only put out what you put in – and as tempting as those mi goreng noodles are, it’s important to eat a range of foods to make sure you can concentrate on campus. For a bunch of quick and easy meal ideas, check out Food in a Minute and impress your flatties!

This mid-semester break, move better, feel better and think better. Karawhiua! (Go for it!)

What else can you do to make the most of the break?