Google “college students and stress” and a host of scholarly articles, blog posts and news reports will describe the epidemic plaguing thousands of young American adults. Concerned with tackling the issue, WSU devotes time and energy to combat student stress via their Stress Relief Center, located on the first floor of the Swenson Gym.

The Stress Relief Center, headed by Dr. Michael Olpin of Health Promotion and Human Performance, and run by Health Promotion student interns, provides various options for anxious students to alleviate stress. The center is open to students and faculty free of charge.

WSU junior, Caleb Taylor, who visits the center frequently said, “I spent so much of my time stressing over so many different things. I wish I knew about the Stress Relief Center much sooner, because I know it would have helped me academically and even personally.”

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The Stress Relief Center for Weber State students in the Swenson Gym. (Sara Parker / The Signpost)

Upon arriving at the center, one of the student interns will take a visitor’s blood pressure and ask them to rate their stress. After using various resources within the center, an intern will remeasure the visitor’s blood pressure and ask them to rate their stress to gauge the effectiveness of their visit.

The data collected from participants is used for research within the Health Promotion department. Data compiled from previous years has been published in international and national journals.

“Basically, we have seen that 99.9% of the data shows that people are leaving here feeling much less stressed. Their blood pressure has gone down and they’re feeling better,” said Logan George, a senior in the Health Promotion program completing her internship at the Stress Relief Center.

The center offers resources such as Chi machines, an aqua massage table, a musical rejuvenation lounger, foot and neck massagers, books on managing stress, teas and essential oils.

Ranking first place for most popular machine amongst students includes several massage chairs that offer body massages: some massage chairs include body scans to ensure that the massages are custom to the amount of stress a patron might be feeling.

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Massage chairs in the Stress Relief Center at the Swenson Gym. (Sara Parker / The Signpost)

In addition to offering equipment to help combat and manage stress, student, faculty and community members can talk to the staff within the center to get advice on stress management.

Students, like freshman Kylie Burgess, find the center to be one of the most valuable resources on campus.

“I found the center by accident, but now I am there quite frequently. It is the best part of Weber in my opinion. Going to the Stress Relief Center, even just for 15 minutes, helps me do better on my studies,” Burgess said.

The Stress Relief Center also aims to provide stress management resources to the community. Non WSU students can purchase a guest pass for one day from the Swenson Gym for $6 or pay $150 per semester to gain access to the gym and to the Stress Relief Center.

“Come and try it out,” George said. “Most people don’t know about us, but if you just have 10 minutes, come in because it will help you feel better.”

The Stress Relief Center is located in room 124 of Swenson Gym. More information can be found at

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