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Fair Lawn Student Uses Yoga Experience For Senior Symposium

Gallatin seniors share inspiring stories that developed from their academic concentrations and colloquium topics.
Gallatin seniors share inspiring stories that developed from their academic concentrations and colloquium topics. Video Credit: NYU Gallatin
Nicky Bienstock graduated from NYU Gallatin
Nicky Bienstock graduated from NYU Gallatin Photo Credit: Lisa Swain
Nicky Bienstock
Nicky Bienstock Photo Credit: Lisa Swain

FAIR LAWN, N.J.– Neuroscience is one of the most fundamental ways to understand how we function as humans, Nicky Bienstock of Fair Lawn told her classmates during NYU's Gallatin's Senior Symposium.

Bienstock, 21, was one of the few seniors who delivered a TED-X -type talk discussing the major they designed.

Her major was mindful medicine: Science, culture and practice. She also minored in Child and Adolescent Mental Health Studies, though that is a pre-existent program.

"Neurophysiology is the field that explores the intersection between the central nervous system and physiological functions," Bienstock told Daily Voice. "For me, neuroscience, especially neurophysiology is one of the most fundamental ways to understand how we function as humans. It creates a trajectory of understanding from how we perceive information or are affected by stimuli around us, and how those various things become part of our being and interact/affect our physiological functioning."

Bienstock has been a yoga instructor for four years and discussed pranayama in her nearly 11-minute lecture.

Pranayama, which comes from Sanskrit, is the breathing practices of yoga, she said. Prana means life force energy and yama is what you do with it, she said.

"Together that makes the breath," Bienstock added. "Yoga and healing with a deep scientific understanding is what I do."

Bienstock attended Fair Lawn public schools through ninth grade before transferring to Barnstable Academy in Oakland.

She is also a reiki master – a tradition of energy medicine originating in Japan.

Now that she's graduated, Bienstock will be conducting child psychiatry research at Bellevue Hospital.

"I will continue to teach yoga professionally as I have been doing. I have private clients and several weekly public classes," she said.

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