Summer Water Safety Tips

With 30-40 degree days looming on the horizon, taking a dip in the pool or a trip to the beach can be a great way to cool off. Summer, activities in and around the water can be great fun, but sometimes can be dangerous. It can take less than a minute and only a few centimetres of water to drown. Accidents can happen anywhere – at a friend’s place, at the beach and even in your own backyard. In the last year alone 271 people drowned in Australian waterways. Even if you are a competent swimmer, you can sometimes find yourself in trouble around water, so make sure you are aware of your surroundings and follow the different rules around different bodies of water. Stay safe this summer!

It is important to always Watch Around Water, where the following superivion pactices should always be adhered to:

  • Children under 10 years of age need to be actively supervised at all times 
  • Children under 5 years of age need to be within arm’s reach in and around the water.

Please take note of the other tips around water to ensure your safety this summer:

Swimming Pools

  • Always swim with an adult or a friend, including in your home pool
  • Always check the depth of the pool & swim in a depth that is safe for you.
  • Always look before you jump or dive into a pool. If the water is too shallow, you may hurt your neck!
  • Always shut the pool gate.
  • At a public pool, obey the lifeguard, the rules & your parent or guardian
  • Walk around the pool at all times
  • Take swimming lessons to develop your skills and learn safety techniques around water


  • Always swim with an adult or friend
  • Check with a lifeguard or the signage to gain an understanding of the conditions
  • Always swim between the red & yellow flags at a patrolled beach.
  • Obey the lifeguard directions
  • Never turn your back on the waves
  • Always remember that swimming in open water is very different to pools
  • If you get stuck in a rip, don’t panic! Raise your hand and wait for lifeguard help.
  • Wear protective footwear on the shore
  • Never jump headfirst into the water if you don't know the depth below - always go feet first

Lakes and Ponds

  • Always swim with an adult or friend
  • Be careful with murky water – you may not be able to see the depth or what is underwater
  • If you get into trouble, stay calm
  • On a boat, always wear a Personal Floatation Device (PFD)
  • Test the water temperature before entering the water

Other safety tips 

  • Always wear sunscreen if swimming outside, and wear a hat and sunglasses.
  • Always remember to drink water and stay hydrated
  • Never swim in the dark
  • Never swim under the influence of alcohol
  • Make sure you have fun!
For more information and tips, click the following links.

Learn to Swim School - Key Dates

30 Nov – 20 Dec                         Re-enrolment period Term 1, 2016
30 Nov – 6 Dec                           Water Safety Week
20 Dec                                         Final Day for Term 4, 2015
23 Dec – 3 Jan                            University Closedown Period
11 Jan – 15 Jan                           Holiday Intensive Swimming    Program – Week 1
18 Jan – 22 Jan                           Holiday Intensive Swimming    Program – Week 2
29 Jan                                          First Day for Term 1, 2016
22 Feb – 28 Feb                          PB week (Levels 7-9)
7 Mar – 13 Mar                            Water Safety Week
11 Mar – 24 Mar                          Re-enrolment Period Term 2, 2016
24 Mar                                          Final Day for Term 2, 2016
4 Apr – 8 Apr                              Holiday Intensive Swimming Program
11 Apr                                          First Day for Term 2, 2016

Viva Italia - Leading by Example

Throughout and following the 10,000 steps challenge we've been advocating the numerous benefits of walking.

Walking helps manage weight, increase mood and reduces your risk for a multitude of diseases and our staff are definitely walking their talk.

The recent 10,000 steps challenge offered the perfect opportunity for our staff to lead by example, with our Caulfield team "Viva Italia", winning the Caulfield campus 10,000 steps challenge.

Team consisted of Debbie Paras - leading the charge at 659,939 steps alone, along with team captain Stephen Ludekens, and other team members Celeste Astorino, Olga Peneva-Prakash, Jeremy O'Halloran, Tim Wallace, Liana Vlajankov and Lina May.

The team completed the challenge in only 15 days, 10 days before the finish date. Overall the team completed 3,887,874 steps, 1,647,874 over the total number of steps required to complete the challenge.

Upstairs Training Area - Works Notice

During the upcoming University close down period, the Fitness Centre at Clayton will be undergoing flooring works within the upstairs training area.

These works form part of our commitment to the ongoing improvement of our facilities and in providing a quality training environment.  

In order to ensure enough time is allocated to complete these works, the upstairs training area will be unavailable for use on Tuesday 22 December.

The downstairs training area will be available for use as normal. 

We apologise for any inconvenience and ask all members to please adjust your training accordingly.
Please see a Health and Fitness Instructor if you need any assistance being shown alternative training options.

Swim On! Carnival

We loved hosting our bi-annual Swim On! Carnival on Sunday 22 November. The event hosted 73 participants, with four Adult Learn to Swim participants (3 from our Water Wise program), keen to take part in the numerous activities on offer, catering to all age groups and stages in swimming programs.

As well as the competitive stroke competitions, and novelty activities, participants got to take some snaps in our Photo Booth, snack on a sausage sizzle or win one of our door prizes.

Our balloon artist Patrizio was a crowd favourite, with participants lining up to get one of his creations.

We'd also like to offer a huge thanks to the 17 Aquatic staff who generously volunteered their time to help out on the day.

We're looking forward to seeing you all again
next time!

Take a Class and Stay in Shape over Summer

Our new group fitness timetable has begun!

Bookmark it now to make sure you get into all your old favourites, or try out something new. Group fitness is a great way to socialise with friends while getting in shape.

Take a ride in our cycle class, pump some iron in our Body Pump classes or check out our new Barre Pilates class, debuting at Peninsula campus Saturday mornings at 8.30am. Or take a break after work to try out our new 5.30 Zumba class at Clayton.

Our new group fitness timetables can be found here.

9 Reasons to Start Walking Today

The majority of us spend a large part of our day at work, leading largely sedentary lifestyles. One of the simplest and most effective ways to get some additional exercise in is to walk. Recent evidence suggesting that regular brisk walks could be as good for us, or possibly better than jogging.

Although 30 minutes of walking daily is the recommended ideal, you don't need to fit it in all at once.  If you find yourself struggling to set aside 30 minutes a day, you can split the walk into 3 ten minute stints, or a couple of 15-minute journeys. 

Here are nine reasons to start walking today:

1. Walking Helps Manage Weight

Walking may seem leisurely but research has shown that it can be effective in reducing and controlling weight especially when combined with a healthy diet. Researchers at the University of Quebec found that women who walked more weighed less and had a smaller percentage of body fat.

2. Strengthens Bones and Joints

Walking is easier on your joints than high-impact activities such as running or aerobics but it is still a form of weight bearing. Weight bearing exercises have long been known to strengthen bones reducing your risk of developing osteoporosis as well as osteoarthritis. Walking just 30 minutes a day a few times a week is enough to increase bone density ~2% compared to non-exercisers.

3. It Lowers Your Risk of Heart Disease

Walking can improve circulation, ward of heart disease, strengthen the heart, reduce cholesterol and lower blood pressure. In fact researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory found that walking was as good as running when it came to your heart health. 

4. It's Good for your Brain

Walking has extensive cognitive benefits, improving memory, academic performance cognitive control and boosting creativity. It also improves circulation and cerebral blood flood which may help slow mental decline as you age. Studies from the University of Pittsburg have shown that seniors who walk at least 6 miles (9.6km) a week have reduced brain shrinkage. The 2014 World Alzheimer's Report also listed regular exercise is one of the best ways to combat the onset and advancement of the disease.

5. Decrease Your Cancer Risk

Walking may reduce your risk of developing some cancers. Women who walk at least seven hours a week are 14% less likely to develop breast cancer according to research while men treated for prostrate cancer who walk briskly at least three hours a week reduce their chances of recurrence.

6. Prevent or Control Diabetes

Walking can help lower your blood sugar levels, helping to control and prevent diabetes. Several studies have found that as little as fifteen minutes of walking after a meal will improve digestion and even out blood sugar levels. Additionally, even small amounts of weight loss can reduce risk factors, and delay or prevent the onset of the disease. 

7. It Can Make You Happier

A study performed by California State University found that the more steps people took throughout the day, the better their moods were due to the production of endorphins. It has also been cited as a way to reduce stress levels.

8. Walking Leads to Longer Life

A number of different researchers have found that walking can increase your longevity. The Honolulu heart study found walking just 2 miles (3.2km) a day can cut the risk of death in half, while another study found that those who partake in regular exercise in their fifties and sixties are 3.5% less likely to to die over the next eight years than their non-walking counterparts. If they already have underlying health conditions that figure increases to 4.5%.

9. It Can Reduce Your Risk of Stroke

Researchers have found that women who walk at a brisk pace for exercise have a much lower chance of having a stroke than those who didn't after a large long term study. The study theorised that the reduced risk of stroke was due to walking's ability to decrease blood pressure, which is a strong risk factor for stroke.

Following the completion of the 10,000 steps challenge, Monash Sport will be implementing a weekly walking group for all staff members at the Caulfield and Clayton campuses.

Date: Every Tuesday from the December 1, 2015
Time: 1:00 - 1:45pm (approx.)
Where: Meet at the Lemon Scented Lawn

Date: Every Wednesday starting December 2, 2015
Time: 12 - 12:45pm (approx.)
Where: Meet at the Sound Shell

DorsaVi Study Opportunity

The Monash University Physiotherapy department are studying the way the movements of the spine change with age. They would like to know when spines start to lose their mobility and how this may be affected by lifestyle or a history of back pain.
The project has been approved by the Monash University Ethics Committee that oversees research involving humans. They are seeking participants across the lifespan for this study aged 18 years or more without current back pain.
Participants will be provided with a report of their low back movement assessment and a free movie ticket  Testing and a survey take about 30 minutes. The test is not invasive and there is no cost for participation or for the report.

Movement testing will be conducted on the Monash University Peninsula campus, but, as the measuring devices are portable, it may also be possible for data to be collected at a location of your choice. This might suit a group of people who are interested in participating (for example, we could come to a retirement village, sports club, or community group to assess  on site).
If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact Jenny via  Jenny is on holidays till  January so don't be discouraged if a response is delayed. The next test session is planned for mid January 2016.

Walk Your Way to Better Health

Despite being a fairly underrated form of exercise, walking is a great way to improve or maintain your overall health. It's low impact, doesn't require equipment or any particular athletic skill, it's cost effective and can be done at any time of day or night by the majority of people regardless of your fitness level.

Walking is particularly good for those who are worried about the risks associated with some of the more vigorous forms of exercise.

Research has shown that just 150 minutes of brisk walking a week can add 3.4 years to your lifespan as well as offering a range of health benefits by increasing cardiovascular fitness, bone strength, decreasing excess body fat, and increasing musculature and endurance levels.

Regular exercise, even a low impact exercise such as walking can also lead to better performance at work. Researchers have found clear relationships between walking and overall mood and energy levels. The more walking you do throughout the day, the greater your overall mood and energy. Exercise can also increase cognitive function, making it easier to solve tough problems.

Walking can also help regulate your blood sugar levels, preventing the dips in energy after meals leading to three thirty-itis which can leave you feeling sluggish and struggling to concentrate.

Following the completion of the 10,000 steps challenge, Monash Sport will be implementing a weekly walking group for all staff members at the Caulfield and Clayton campuses, this program will be launched at the 10,000 steps celebration held at Monash Sport. Registrations for the event can be found here.

Holiday Intensive Swimming Programs

Want to improve your strokes and enhance your survival skills?

In the new year, Monash Sport is hosting a 5 day intensive swimming program to assist in the consolidation and enhancement of water safety, survival skills and stroke development of participants.

The program consists of a lesson a day for a week with two different week options available. Whether you are already participating in the Learn to Swim program, or would like to take the plunge an commence your swimming journey, this program is for you!

Week 1: 11 - 15 Jan, 2016
Week 2: 18 - 22 Jan, 2016

** Monash University Students are eligible for 100% funding to participate in the introductory or beginner level Water Wise programs.

Register online today to get involved or contact the Aquatics Service desk on 9905 4115 for more information!

Water Safety Week

With Summer on its way and many taking to the water to cool down, it's important to have the skills to stay safe around water.

Monash Sport is committed to the development of crucial life saving skills in Learn to Swim participants as well as building their confidence in and out of the water.

Water Safety Weeks a state-wide initiative aiming to promote water safety throughout the Victorian Community.

Kicking off from Monday 30 November to Sunday 6 December, throughout the week all Learn to Swim participants will perform simulated water survival activities to replicate real life aquatic scenarios.

A clothed swim will be included during the lesson, so it is important that participants bring additional clothing to wear over their swim wear.

What to wear to your lesson:

Level 1-5: T-shirt and shorts
Level 6-7: Long top and pants
Level 8-9: Long top and pants (shoes and socks optional)

Adult Intro/Beg/Inter: T-shirt and shorts
Adult Advanced: Long top and pants

For more information please contact the Aquatics Service Desk on 9905 4115.

New and Blue! Tennis Court Reopening

After nine weeks of refurbishment, the tennis courts at Monash Sport Clayton have reopened!

Just in time for summer, the previous issues associated with depressions and cracking in the tennis court surfaces have been totally fixed. The courts have been resurfaced with a new Plexipave system, with court lines also being repainted. This will ultimately contribute to a more enjoyable experience on the tennis courts for students, staff and the Monash community.

All Monash University staff and students are encouraged to try our new refurbished tennis courts with our $2 Happy Hour. Tennis court use is only $2 per hour during 12-2pm Monday to Friday, or those under time restrictions can book half an hour for only $1. This offer is also available at Peninsula as well as Clayton. 

We are very excited to deliver resurfaced tennis courts to the Monash University community. 

Key Dates for Learn to Swim Participants

This one is for all of our Learn to Swim participants! Make sure you record the follow dates in your calendar so you don't miss a thing!

Swim On!
Sunday 22 November, 2015
Demonstrate the skills you've learnt throughout your lessons in a mixture of competitive stroke and novelty events. Find out more here.

Water Safety Week
30 November - 6 December, 2015
During Water Safety Week, all Learn to Swim participants will perform simulated water survival activities to replicate real life aquatic scenarios. A clothed swim will be included in your lesson so bring additional clothes!

Progress Reports
7 - 13 December, 2015
All Learn to Swim participants from every level will receive progress reports this week.

Re-Enrol for Term 1, 2016
30 November - 20 December, 2015
Make sure get your enrolment in between these dates to get a spot in the Term 1, 2016 Learn to Swim classes!

Last Week of Term 4
14 - 20 December, 2015
This is the final week of Learn to Swim classes for 2015.

Holiday Intensive Swimming Program
Week 1: 11-15 Jan, 2016
Week 2: 18-22 Jan, 2016
Boost your skills, enhance water safety and develop your stroke with our Holiday Intensive Swimming Program. Find out more here

Swim On! Sunday 22 November

Swim On is back again, Sunday 22 November, offering activities for swimmers of any age or stage in the program.

The carnival offers a mixture of competitive stroke and novelty events for swimmers to demonstrate the skills they've learnt during lessons.

Swimmers from levels 1 to 9 will receive a ribbon after the event, with those in levels 4-9 also receiving a certificate recording their time for each event.

Adult participants will also receive an achievement card recording their distance swum. Entries close Sunday 15 November, so get in quick!

Contact the Aquatics Service Desk on 9905 4115 to find out more.

2016 Membership Information (for current Monash Sport members)

We are writing to inform you that Monash Sport will be implementing minor price adjustments for its services from Monday 4 January, 2016. These price adjustments have been limited in the most part to a 3 to 5% increase, in order to meet rising operational expenses such as electricity, gas, water and labour costs. All current members will be receiving communication detailing the specifics of these adjustments.

Additionally, this is also a reminder about Monash University's annual close-down period, which will be effective from Wednesday 23 December 2015 through Sunday 3 January 2016 (inclusive). This is a timely reminder that customers will not be able to use our facilities during this time, and that members on direct debit memberships may wish to suspend their memberships over this time. Our last day of operation in 2015 will be Tuesday 22 December.

Please speak to a Monash Sport customer service officer for any further information. 

Thank you for your continued support and custom, we look forward to again serving you in a bigger and better 2016! 

Clayton Campus Parking Update

At the end of each semester, Monash has traditionally opened the two multi-level car parks, allowing free car parking for motorists in these car parks.
Monash has continued this practice into November 2015. Due to the current construction works and increased demand, many staff and students who have paid for permit parking in these car parks are currently unable to find a space.
As a result, free parking in the multi-level car parks (N1 on Innovation Walk and SE4 on Scenic Boulevard) will cease from Monday 9 November. Free car parking will be available at the Wellington Road car park.

Halloween Spookfest at Monash Sport

Monash Sport got well and truly into the Halloween spirit across all campuses on Saturday 31 October.

To celebrate the spooky season Group Fitness staff and participants came dressed in their scariest costumes with awards going to the best dressed.

There was great energy exhibited by all participants on the day and thanks to everyone who got involved and dressed up! All instructors thoroughly enjoyed teaching their classes with Halloween inspired music and are looking for a repeat in 2016.

Summer Group Fitness Timetable Starting soon

Stay fit this summer with our new semester of group fitness classes starting 30 November. All your old favourites are back including Cycling, Zumba, Body Pump and Yoga as well as last semester's new addition - Tabata.

Check out the new timetable on our website and make sure to bookmark all your favourites so you don't miss out!


Challenge Circuit challenges our members!

Congratulations to our members who recently completed the Circuit Challenge, held at Monash Sport Clayton on Tuesday 20 October.

It was fantastic to see our members actively involved and the energy and effort put forward to get through the challenges was inspiring. Well done!

Over 25 members were put through their paces against a ticking clock, completing a series of personal challenges, including a range of push, pull and body-weight exercises. The challenge highlighted areas for many of our members that they may want to focus on more during their training in the fitness centre.

The Circuit Challenge provides the perfect opportunity for members to reassess their training direction and balance. We encourage all members to take advantage of our Program Designs/Reviews and Assessments following completion of the Circuit Challenge.

Monash Sport offers members Program Designs and Assessments at no additional cost, making it a fantastic and affordable way to help track and monitor your fitness progress.

Bookings can be made at the fitness centre with any of our fully qualified instructors.

Peninsula Members Xmas BBQ Brunch

With Christmas fast approaching, Monash Sport Peninsula would like celebrate the festive season by welcoming all members to an Xmas BBQ Brunch.

When: Saturday 28 November
Time: 10am
Where: Rotunda in front of the library

Monash Sport will provide the meat for the BBQ including vegetarian options, sauce, bread and soft drinks. If you would like to join please bring a salad, dessert or any other drinks (non-alcoholic only) to share.

Notification of Annual Monash University Closedown Period

As we approach the end of 2015, this is a timely reminder about the annual Monash University closedown period, which will be effective from Wednesday 23 December, through to Sunday 3 January 2016 (inclusive).

Customers will not be able to use our facilities during this time, our last day of operation in 2015 will be Tuesday 22 December. We look forward to opening and seeing you again in the new year on Monday 4 January.

Please speak to any Monash Sport customer service officer for further information or questions you may have regarding your membership.

Summer Social Sport Registrations - Now Open!

Love Sport? Looking for more ways to keep fit through summer? Want a bit of friendly competition?

Summer season registrations are now open

Registrations close Tuesday 17 November, but many competitions reach capacity well before the close date so get in quick! 

Order of entry into competitions will be based on date of registration so register early to avoid disappointment.

All registrations must be completed online. To find out more please click here.

Beat the Heat and Stay Hydrated This Summer

With the temperatures climbing and the summer sun peeking through, it can be hard to stay hydrated.

Every day, our bodies naturally lose water. Perspiration in the summer months, particularly if you're active, increases the amount of water you lose each day, so replacing this water is incredibly important.

Water is required in a number of biochemical reactions, supplying nutrients and removing waste. It is essential to maintain your blood circulation through your body and your body temperature. Dehydration can be serious leading to problems ranging from swollen feet or headaches, to life-threatening illnesses such as heat stroke.

The amount of water you need varies between people. Thirst isn't the best indicator of when you need to drink either. If you're thirsty, then you're already dehydrated. For athletes a good indicator of how much fluid you need is to weigh yourself before and after exercise to see how much you've lost through perspiration. You need to drink three cups of water (or other fluid) to replace every 0.45 of a kilo lost.
Proper hydration is critical for your body function, but its also important to consume the right fluids. We've outlined some tips on the best way to keep hydrated in summer.

  • Drink enough water to prevent thirst (carrying a water bottle with you is a good way to do this as it's likely you'll mindlessly sip from it throughout the day)
  • Monitor fluid loss by checking the colour of your urine - it should be pale yellow and not dark, too smelly or cloudy
  • Drink water before and after low to moderate intensity
  • If you're exercising in extreme heat for more than an hour, supplement water with a sports drink containing electrolytes and 6-8% carbs to prevent hyponatremia
  • Although water is best, other fluids like coffee, tea, juice (except alcohol) can help increase your water intake (the amount of caffeine in tea and coffee does not discount the fluid in them)
  • Eat water rich foods such as fruit and vegetables
  • Following strenuous exercise, you need more protein to build muscle, carbohydrates to refuel muscle, electrolytes to replenish what's lost in perspiration, and fluids to rehydrate - Low-fat chocolate milk is perfect to fill those nutritional requirements.
Bonus tip:

On average a piece of fruit is usually made up of around 80% water and supplies additional nutrients other than just water.

Apples = 84%
Blueberry = 80%
Rockmelon = 89%
Peach = 89%

Summer Water Safety

Summer is on it's way and offers a great excuse to spend time around water in efforts to combat the extreme temperatures. Typical Australian summer activities such as boating, swimming or trips to the beach, can be fantastic ways to cool off, however it's important to be safe.

Each year, tragic and avoidable water related fatalities occur. Having at least a beginner level of swimming ability can make a huge difference.

In an effort to increase water safety and swimming ability of Monash University students, all current students can enrol in free beginner swimming classes through our Water Wise program. The program is made available free to students thanks to SSAF funding.

Other factors to keep in mind if you're not a confident swimmer:

  • Don't swim alone. Take a buddy even if the area is supervised by lifeguards.
  • Don't drink alcohol around water, it impairs judgement, balance and coordination and affects swimming skills.
  • Wear a life jacket when boating.
  • Lifesavers are only on duty when the red and yellow flags are displayed. ALWAYS swim between these flags.
Term 4 programs have already begun, but you can enrol at any time. The term runs from 5 October to 20 December. More information can be found here.

Ride 2 Work Day at Peninsula Campus

Ride 2 Work Day at Peninsula Campus

By Liam Sharp

The new Velopod lockers and bike repair station were officially unveiled at Peninsula campus last week, to coincide with Ride 2 Work Day.

20 people attended the Ride 2 Work Day event, which included free breakfast and the unveiling of the SSAF plaque for the Velopod lockers and bike repair station by Dr Justen O Connor, from the Faculty of Education.

Cycling gifts and the free breakfast were provided by The Office of Environmental Stability (TOES), and The Office of the Pro-Vice Chancellor provided a $200 gift voucher from Avanti Cycles.

Monash Sport ran a bike and blend station, where participants could blend their own breakfast smoothie. The smoothies and breakfast were enjoyed by all.

Student Evaluations Survey

We're conducting research into Monash Sport's role in the student experience at Monash University. 
We'd love to hear from you about your experience at Monash Sport, and how this has reflected on your time at Monash University. 

This will help us make improvements to our servicing of students in the future, and the offering of Sport services to Monash University students. The survey should only take 5 minutes, and your responses are completely anonymous.

We really appreciate your input!

Celebrate Halloween in style with Monash Sport

On Saturday 31 October, Monash Sport will be celebrating Halloween with halloween costume themed group fitness classes across all campuses.

Come dressed in your scariest costume and celebrate the spooky season with us!

Prizes will go to the best dressed.

Where: Group Fitness Classes, All Campuses
When: Saturday 31 October

Eating for Exams Tips

When you're studying for exams it can be easy to fall into bad nutritional habits. It's often easier to start guzzling down endless cups of coffee or energy drinks, and eat take-away instead of taking the time to prepare food. During exams we're much more likely to snack mindlessly on sugary foods or drinks to try and keep our energy levels up.

Sugar may give you an instant hit of energy, but when it wears off you'll crash and find yourself reaching for the next hit to keep you awake while studying.

Your brain uses more than 20% of your daily energy intake to function, despite only being 2% of your body's weight. Because the energy demand from the brain is so high, the foods we consume significantly affect all aspects of brain function, from memory to mood. Eating proper food will provide sustained energy and make you more productive.

Don't Skip Breakfast

When you wake in the morning you are in a fasted state. You haven't eaten for several hours and your energy-hungry brain needs food to be able to concentrate. Make sure to have a balanced breakfast incorporating plenty of wholegrains for sustained energy and protein for regulation of memory.

Follow the Healthy Eating Pyramid

Eat plenty of vegetables, fruit and wholegrains, choose healthy meats (fish, chicken and lean red meat) and healthy oils. Look for antioxidant-rich fruits, especially berries, citrus fruits and nutrient rich vegetables such as spinach, capsicum, broccoli and sweet potatoes.

Eat Foods that Assist Your Brain and Immune Function

During exam times high stress levels can take a toll on your body's immune system. Adding immune- and brain- boosting foods can help you stay ahead.

Foods that can assist immune function are natural yoghurt, fish, citrus fruits, garlic, ginger, green tea, as well as omega-3-rich foods such as flaxseed, salmon, walnuts or chia.

Foods that can help brain function include whole grains, oily fish, pumpkin seeds, nuts, broccoli, blueberries, blackberries, flaxseed and eggs.

Staying active during periods of high stress is important to not only reduce your stress levels but also helps to increase your body's immune system so you should plan your study days with some exercise breaks.

Avoid Stimulants

Caffeine stimulates the central nervous system and heightens emotions. If you're already stressed and anxious it's a good idea to cut back on these. Alcohol and nicotine are also ranked as stimulants, and while they may calm your nerves momentarily they tend to increase anxiety. Alcohol is also an amnesiac, and may prevent you from remembering what you've been studying.

Stay Hydrated

Water assists in many of the chemical reactions in our body, including our brain, which is over 70% water. If we get dehydrated we can become sluggish and simple tasks can seem insurmountable. Drink plenty of water while studying and avoid drinking large amounts of caffeine such as coffee and energy drinks as while you may think they will keep you alert, they dehydrate you, make you jittery or anxious and can have an energy zapping effect.

Examples Meal and Snack Ideas

Breakfast: Whole grain cereal and milk, scrambled eggs and spinach with toast, oatmeal with berries, smoothie

Lunch: Chicken Skewers and Vegetables, Tuna Salad, sweet chilli and chicken noodle salad, homemade burger packed with grated veggies on a wholemeal bun

Dinner: Teriyaki Salmon with asian greens and brown rice, grilled steak with beans and mashed sweet potato, vegetable and cheese frittata

Snacks: Low fat natural yoghurt, fruit, raw nuts, air popped popcorn, smoothie, hommus and carrot

Top 6 Tips for Dealing with Exam Stress

Exams are approaching and final assignments becoming due, it's not unusual for students to experience increasing levels of stress towards the end of semester.

Stress is our body's normal response to life's challenges. In small amounts stress can be useful to help you knuckle down and focus however, extreme levels can leave you feeling out of control, anxious and debilitated.

Stress can manifest in many different ways and extreme or prolonged cases of the following can all be indicative of heightened stress levels.

  • Difficulty getting to sleep or waking up in the morning
  • Constant tiredness
  • Poor appetite
  • Lack of motivation or interest in activities
  • Increased anxiety and irritability and/or heart rate
  • Headaches/migraines
  • Decreased immune system

If you feel yourself starting to get stressed there are a number of techniques you can use to help manage your stress levels.

1. Prepare Early

I'm sure you've heard this one already. Your teachers at school and university would have drummed this into you over and over again. Leaving everything to the last minute it a recipe for disaster. You'll feel out of control and may struggle to pinpoint the areas that you should be focusing on.

Start now, work out what subjects you have, when your exams are and how long you have to prepare for them. List which ones you feel more confident in and which you may have fallen a bit behind in and plan your time around this. Even if you don't have any time to start studying until closer to the exams you'll at least have prioritised the areas you think you need to focus on and won't be as overwhelmed.

2. Exercise

Lack of time and feeling overwhelmed during exams can make it hard to make time to exercise during exams. Many students think they should spend their entire exam period with their heads down trying to absorb as much as possible.

Not only does exercise help reduce stress levels, it is proven to boost your memory and brain power. Images from a study conducted by Dr Chuck Hillman of the University of Illinois below clearly demonstrate the effect exercise can have on your brain's activity.
Why not go for a walk, spend some time at the fitness centre or pool or take a group fitness class- yoga is a great way to get your relaxation in while still moving.

3. Eat Well

Your brain needs fuel to function and the more nutritious your food the better you'll study. Stick to the healthy eating pyramid, stay hydrated and avoid junk food and too many stimulants like caffeine. Sugar may give you an instant energy hit but you'll feel worse when the hit wears off. For more specific tips on nutrition during exams click here.

4. Get enough sleep

Stress can make it hard to get to sleep but its important to try to get at least 6-8 hours a night. Getting enough sleep will not only help you stay focused and concentrate more, but it's also important for remembering information you learnt during the day. Your brain assimilates knowledge during sleep which helps you retain the knowledge in your long-term memory so you can recall it during exams.

If you're having trouble sleeping stop revising and go tech-free for at least half an hour before bedtime. Read a book or have a chat to a family member or housemate over a cup of chamomile tea so that your not overstimulated before bed.

5. Meditate

Meditation can be a fantastic way to break free from stress and take a break from study. A quick 10 minute meditation break can help you stay focused and improve mental and physical health to reduce pre-exam stress. Never meditated before? There are plenty of online resources available or apps like Smiling Mind to help you get started.

6. Take a Break

It's important to take time out to relax and do things you enjoy even while you're midway in exams. Try studying for 50 minute blocks and taking a 10 minute break, or two hours and take a half hour break. Reward yourself the latest episode of your favourite TV show, go for a walk with a friend, or use your breaks as scheduled social media time.

Bonus Stress-busters

Play with your pet.
Pop bubble wrap.
Listen to music.
Avoid negative people and comparing yourself to other people.

Circuit Challenge - October 20

Come test yourself in our Monash Sport Circuit Challenge, Tuesday 20 October.

Challenges will kick off in the basketball stadium from 11am and finish at 2pm, there's no need to book so come in anytime. Don't miss out!

Join in and have your fitness tested over a series of personal challenges against the clock including:

Push ups
Pull ups
Rope Slam
Tyre Pull
Deadball Squat
Hanging Leg Raise
Box Jumps

Challenges take no longer than 10 minutes to complete so it's the perfect way to start or finish your workout at the Fitness Centre.

All fitness levels are welcome and the challenges will be varied to suit you. Set your own limits and let us cheer you on!

Complete the Circuit Challenge and go into the draw to win 2 weeks FREE membership at Monash Sport! See any of our staff in the fitness centre for more information or click here.

Caulfield v Peninsula Annual Soccer Match 2015

On Tuesday September 22, the annual Peninsula v Caulfield soccer match took place for the prestigious MONSU cup.

This year marked the 13th occasion of the match which first began in 2003.

With the overall tally locked at 6 wins each, it was sure to be a tense affair.

In the end Peninsula came away with a narrow 3-2 victory, holding off a fast finishing Caulfield. Caulfield trailed by 3 goals early in the second half but fought back late in the game, controlling all play for the last 30 minutes and narrowly missing the opportunity to equalise on several occasions.

Freya Crocker did a tremendous job in goals for Peninsula to fight off the numerous attempts on goal and earn player of the match, whilst Jarred Sultana proved a pillar of strength, mopping up countless attacks in his sweeper role.

Peninsula Goal Scorers:

Daniel Fleming
Nick Mandic
Max Waldron

Caulfield Goal Scorers:

Michael Ligocki

Peninsula captain Ervin Lim, Monash Sport Director Brett Lavale and Caulfield captain Tony Nguyen

Trial cycle class at Clayton!

At Clayton campus we are trialing the addition of a new group fitness class to the timetable!

Over the next few weeks we will have a new cycle class (with Nicoletta) on every Monday at 4.30pm. Should this class be well attended we will consider adding it to our Group Fitness Timetable permanently.

Over $9,000 raised at MS 24 Hour Mega Swim

Team Minky raised over $3,800 and swam 87 kms

By Liam Sharp

The 24 Hour Mega Swim, Stride and Spin was held over the weekend at Monash Sport, with over $9,000 raised for people affected by Multiple Sclerosis.

From 10am on Saturday morning to the following Sunday, five teams contributed to raising money for Multiple Sclerosis Australia. There were many tired faces when 10am Sunday arrived, as many participants elected to sleep at the pool over night. However all 52 participants were proud of their achievements while raising money for an excellent cause.

The money raised will go towards financially helping people unable to achieve their goals and dreams due to Multiple Sclerosis, in what MS Australia call Go for Gold scholarships.

Spokesperson for MS Australia Shara Gillahan was thrilled with the efforts shown from all the teams.

"So for the 2015 Monash 24 Hour Mega Swim, Spin and Cycle, you guys have been able to raise over $8,700 and still counting. That's an amazing effort and will help so many recipients of Go for Gold scholarships," she said.     

"The MS 24 Hour Mega Swim is to help raise funds to support people with MS to achieve their dream by granting them Go for Gold scholarships. Which is a financial scholarship to help them achieve their dreams, whether it be in education or employment, anything like that. Just to make it a little bit easier for them to achieve their dreams."

Shara herself was diagnosed with MS five years ago, and after being supported by MS Australia she has joined the organisation to give something back. 

"I was diagnosed with MS in 2010, and I was fortunate enough to be a recipient of a Go for Gold scholarship in 2012. And through that it allowed me to achieve my dream of traveling over to Ireland and UK and the US to learn millinery from some of the world's best milliners," she said.

Click here for the highlights video featuring Go Pro footage.

The Mega Spin and Mega Stride were two new additions to the Mega Swim event this year, to give flexibility for those wanting to contribute out of the pool. The Mega Stride consisted of walking or running on a treadmill, while the Mega Spin gave participants the task of riding on a spin bike for 24 hours.

Mega Swim team Team Minky took out the overall winning team award, raising $3,840 and swimming 87.6km. Sally Fyfield won the award for highest fundraising for an individual, raising $1,485.

Georgia Abott took out the youth award and Mega Spin team the Knight Riders won the award for best dressed team.

Monash Sport has held five Mega Swim events over the years, with over $100,000 being raised in total.

Donations for the Monash 24 Hour Mega Swim, Mega Spin and Mega Stride will close a month after the event finishes. Follow this link to donate.

Mega Spin team 'Knight Riders' won the best dressed team award.

Ride 2 Work Day - Wednesday 14 October 2015

Monash University is proud to support National Ride2Work Day - the largest celebration of commuter riding in Australia. Held on 14 October 2015, the day celebrates the benefits of riding to work and brings together the Monash community. It helps people who have never ridden to work before to give it a go, and it allows frequent riders to stay motivated and encourage their workmates to get involved.

Sign up for you local campus event using the links below.

  • Clayton 8-10am at the Bike Arrival Station
  • Caulfield 1-3pm at the Caulfield Common
  • Peninsula 7:30am-10am in the MPARC Foyer

On the day bring your bike or helmet to the event for some free treats including: fruit, muffins, puncture repair kits, coffee cups and water bottles. You can say hello to other cyclists, chat about cycling to Monash, or boast about all of the benefits of cycling like:

  • Reducing traffic
  • Saving money
  • Keeping fit
  • And helping the environment

Footy Colours Day 2015

Each year, the Fight Cancer Foundation asks Australians to don their favourite football teams colours, unite and help support the fight against cancer.

For the second year in a row Monash Sport held their all inclusive Footy Colours Day to support the Fight Cancer Foundation.

Staff and students ventured out to Monash Sport in spite of the week 8 overload to sample some tasty fares from food trucks, listen to the tunes from our DJ, test their accuracy at hand balling or kicking a footy and check out how high they could jump in the vertical jump test.

Ever the fan favourite, students also spent some time bouncing off each other, the walls, and even off the ground in friendly games of bubble soccer.

Events were also held at Caulfield and Peninsula campus.

The Clayton campus event also offered the perfect opportunity to announce the Winners of our inaugural Footy Tipping Competition. With nearly 1000 people registered the competition from diverse areas of the University, the final draw came down to six participants equally tied for first place, the winner of which was ultimately determined by the margin score.

First place went to Professor Chrishan Samuel from the Pharmacology faculty and was accepted by Dr Barbara Kemp-Harper on his behalf as he was overseas at the time. Professor Chrishan not only became the winner of the first place prize - a 50 inch Full HD Smart LCD TV, but also came first in their faculty's private competition consisting of around 20 people.

Second place went to Saul Block - a Bachelor of Engineering/Bachelor of Commerce student currently completing his penultimate year. Saul won a one year Fitness and Aquatics membership at Monash Sport.

Third prize was won by biochemical Post-Doctoral researcher Dr Laurent Lermusiaux who got to take home a Playstation 4 and a couple of games.

Fourth place went to first year Psychology student Deandra de Krester who was unable to attend and collect her Fitbit Charge HR as she was in a tutorial during the presentations.

Fifth place and winner of a Fitbit Flex went to Monash Blues football player Taylor Cameron.

A special mention should be made for Professor Edwina Cornish - Provost and Senior Vice-President of Monash University, who was the last to hold an equal tie for first place in points however missed out on a prize by margin.

Well done to all of our nearly 1000 Footy Tipping participants and thanks to all who got involved in our Footy Colours Day celebrations!

Tennis Court Closure

The 8 Tennis Courts at Monash Sport Clayton are undergoing essential maintenance works to replace the court surface. 

The project will require the Tennis Court precinct to be closed for a period of approximately 9 weeks, from when resurfacing began on 15 September.

The project aims to:

  1. Address ongoing maintenance defects associated with depressions and cracking in the tennis court surface.
  2. Resurface the court pavement with a new Plexipave system including repainting of court lines.
Monash Sport is committed to providing a safe environment for all leisure and aquatic centre users and this essential maintenance forms part of this commitment.

Monash Sport will be communicating updates to staff, members and facility users regarding public access availability throughout the project.

During the project, the Tennis Courts will be closed, and there will be no casual or member access during this time.

It is anticipated that there will be reduced parking (8 bays) in the Doug Ellis Swimming Pool car park throughout the project to enable access to the Works Site (Tennis Courts). We apologize for any inconvenience, but look forward to delivering brand new tennis courts to the Monash University community.

Footy Colours Day

On Thursday 17 September Monash Sport will be hosting Footy Colours Day, an all inclusive free event for student and staff at Monash in support of the Fight Cancer Foundation.

So show your team spirit, come on down and celebrate all things football! 

The event will feature activities such as bubble soccer, handball targeting, vertical jumps and more.

Fundraising can be done using this page, we welcome any donation large or small as every little piece helps!

Each campus will be running their own event with Clayton and Peninsula occurring on Thursday 17 September, whilst Caulfield campus will host the event on Wednesday 16 September.

Find out more about the schedule of activities at our event page!

R U OK? Day

On Thursday 10 September, Monash University will be holding numerous events for staff and students to coincide with R U OK? Day.
R U OK? Day creates awareness in the community for suicide prevention. Suicide can affect many people's lives, especially family and friends of those who suffer from mental illness. However it can be prevented by simply asking someone meaningfully: "Are you ok?", and having a conversation.
Monash University is a big supporter of R U OK? Day, with numerous events to be held at the Caulfield and Clayton campuses. One little question can make a big difference to those people struggling with life, make sure you ask someone today! 
Monash Sport will be hosting free relaxation classes, outdoor sport and informal activities and health checks at Caulfield while at Clayton we will be offering a free Dynamic Yoga group fitness class.
Relaxation Class
12.10 – 12.50pm
Campus Green
Outdoor sport and informal activities

Outdoor sports court
Health, weight and blood pressure checks

Campus Green
Dynamic Yoga
1.05 – 2pm
Group Fitness Studio

*Those wishing to participate in the Dynamic Yoga must register for a 7 Day Free Trial. Register form can be found here