Taster Sessions

Find all the free taster sessions for your staff festival day here.

Staff Life Taster Sessions

At the Festival there will be the opportunity to attend the free Staff Life open groups as well as trial free taster sessions of the Staff Life Plus, so if you are interested in the membership, you have the opportunity to try as many as you like before commiting.

If you are interested in signing up, Staff Life Plus membership is charged at £1 per week. Benefits include:

How to join: Complete the online Staff Life Plus membership form.



Baring Court 128 St Luke's, 1100-1200

Register for the St Luke's Taster Session here

Forum Seminar Room 1&2, 1330-1430

Register for the Streatham Taster Session here

Have fun whilst learning a life skill.  Learn easy, effective moves and stretch and exercise your body at the same time…and  the good news – the techniques are easy to learn but are very effective against someone bigger and stronger than you!

Come alone or with a friend and take part in a hands-on taster session in escape techniques. Don’t change your clothing but do be prepared to remove any jewellery, studs or rings!! There will not be anything too stressful, no kicking or punching!!



Craft Club - Paper Craft

Forum Seminar Room 10, 1130-1220, 1230-1320, 1330-1420

Register here for the taster session.

Enjoy the opportunity to participate in the Staff Life Creative Craft Club at the Staff Festival.  This taster session you can learn different paper craft techniques to make cards.




Auricular Acupuncture

Forum Seminar Room 11, 1200-1245

Register here for the Streatham Taster Session

Baring Court 201 St Luke's, 1400-1445

Register here for the St Luke's Taster Session

If proven popular we are looking to include this to our Staff Life offerings, so make sure you provide feedback!

Auricular acupuncture is a deeply restorative treatment helping with:
• Sleep
• Anxiety
• Stress
• Low-mood
• Cravings
• Detoxification
5 fine needles are placed into the ear stimulating the body’s response for self-healing.
A needle free option is available and treatment lasts between 20 and 45 minutes.
The NADA protocol was initially developed to aid relaxation in addiction recovery, and has been
used in disaster zones to support trauma recovery. Because of the calming effect on the nervous
system it has proven to be beneficial in promoting general wellbeing.
Nikki Darling is a qualified NADA practitioner and Yoga Teacher. You can find out more about her
work here.


Book Club

Forum Seminar Room 9, 1215 - 1315

Register here for the Streatham taster session and free book

Cross Keys Seminar Room, 1415 - 1515

Register here for the St Luke's taster session and free book

Register to participate in a free taster session run by the staff book club at the Staff Festival to discuss the number one bestseller - The end of the world running club by Adrian J Walker. Refreshments will be available. Once you have registered Bryony Vandenberg will email you so you will be able to collect a free copy of  the book. Refreshments will be available.

For more information about joining the regular Staff Life book club, click here.


Community Garden - Walk and Dig

Forum Street Stall, 1230

Register here for the taster session

Take the opportunity at 1230 to walk to the community garden to see what its all about, you can even stay and get involved.

The Exeter Community Garden began life in 2011 with six raised beds. Fast-forward to 2017 and now there are nine raised beds, two polytunnels, one greenhouse, one members’ hut, an orchard of heritage fruit trees, a bee hive and the beginnings of a physic garden. The physic garden  aims to make a positive link between mental health and green spaces. Located within the main campus of the university, the physic garden focussed on medicinal plants that were used for treating ailments of the mind like insomnia, anxiety, depression and stress.  The Exeter Community Garden volunteers are made up of students and staff of the University of Exeter and local residents who actively promote biodiversity and sustainability.

For more information about joining the regular Staff Life sessions click here.


Mindful Meditation

Baring Court 128 St Luke's, 1230-1330

Register here for the St Luke's taster session

Forum Seminar Room 9, 1430-1530

Register here for the Streatham taster session

Quiet mindful awareness can be enormously helpful in dealing with stress, exhaustion and overwork, and in restoring energy levels and improving well-being. These sessions have been established to provide staff with a time and place for quiet attention and peaceful reflection.

For more information about joining the regular Staff Life sessions click here.


Staff Community Choir

University Chapel, 1200-1230

Register here for the taster session.

Staff Choir Rehearsal

Although the choir is led by a professional choirmaster, Emma Welton, it is a group that come together just for fun, with no previous singing experience required.  It is part of the Staff Life Plus offering and aims to benefit staff wellbeing and mental health.  They will be performing in the forum at 1130 and offering the opportunity to come and sing together in the Chapel at 1300.

For information about joining the regular Staff Life session click here.



Hatha Yoga

Baring Court 220, 1330-1430

Register here for the taster session

Yoga incorporates stretching and balancing exercises with relaxation and breathing techniques, including meditation. As well as building core strength and improving your all round flexibility, Yoga provides the perfect opportunity to slow down, relax and forget about the stresses of modern life. Yoga mats are provided for the class, but you are welcome to bring your own if you wish. Beginners welcome.


For more information about joining the regular Staff Life session click here.


Tai Chi Demo and Taster Session

Forum Seminar Rooms 1&2, 1430-1530

Register here for the taster session

Come along at the Staff Fesitval to view the demo and take part in the taster session.

The moves of Tai Chi and Qigong are easy to learn and the low impact workout leaves you feeling good in body and mind.

Tai chi is a comprehensive and easy to learn system of movement based on principles of relaxation, physical alignments and mindfulness. Its natural shapes and flowing rhythm are designed to develop strength, flexibility and all round human health.

For more information about the regular Staff Life Tai Chi sessions click here.




Sports Centre Taster Sessions

General Swim

St Luke's Sports Centre, 1200-1300 and 1300-1400

Register here for the taster sessions.

Take the opportunity to enjoy the swimming facilities with a free General Swim taster session.

You can find out more about swimming at the University here




St Luke's Sports Centre, 1400-1430 and 1430-1500

Register here for the taster sessions

The FloatFit® class is a 30 minute HIIT workout including burpees, lunges, squats, aquaclimbers, v-sits…. all on water! This low impact, cross training class gives you a fun full body workout. For more information to take part all year.

Please note: You must have a basic level of swimming in order to take part in this class.


Aqua Fit

St Luke's Sports Centre, 1515-1545

 Register here for the taster sessions

Aqua Fit is an energetic and fun water-based fitness class in which you perform a variety of movements to music, following our motivational instructors. The class is suitable for all ages and abilities who seek a low to medium intensity aerobic workout at St Luke's Indoor Pool. It is also beneficial to people with joint problems or arthritis. Aqua Fit is ideal for burning fat and will help you to increase aerobic fitness as well as relieving stress due to the water's added resistance. Visit our full timetable to see when this class takes place and to plan your fitness activities throughout the week.


Health Checks

Forum Seminar Room 4, 1100-1500

Register here for a Health Check

As part of a healthy lifestyle it is important to monitor your body, and so to help you maintain and monitor your health the Sport Park offer the following health checks free of charge: Body Fat, Blood Pressure, BMI. The tests take no longer than 5 minutes. You can register for one of the 30 minute slots at the festival.




Yurt South Piazza, 1100-1500

Seated Accupressure Chair Massage

Register here for this massage

Rebecca will be using a specially designed chair to offer a rejuvenating treatment at this year's Staff Festival.  A combination of massage and acupressure techniques will be used to relax and dissipate tension on the neck, back and shoulders.  No oils are used so you can return to the festival or back to work feeling refreshed and revitalised!




Register here for this massage


 Sandra will be offering 15 minute reflexology taster sessions.






Back, Neck and Shoulder Massage

Register here for this massage

Helen will be offering taster sessions of Back, Neck, Shoulder massage to ease away excess stress and tension.  This treatment will be using Thai Yoga massage techniques and is carried out fully clothed and without oil, on a comfortable futon mat on the floor. Quickly register for your 15 minute session not to miss out!




Yurt The Quad, 1100-1500

Yoga Therapy Massage

Register here for this massage

Sonia will be offering 15 minute Yoga massage sessions.

Yoga Therapy: For postural problems and developing better body alignment.  The session will provide a balanced mix of body movement and massage to release tight areas in the body, hence to find space inside where one can begin to feel more comfortable and peaceful.  The session can be carried out either seated or lying down.


Massage Made to Measure

Register here for this massage


Sarah will be offering 15 minute taster massages: hands and arms, neck and shoulders or face and scalp. SB Holistic Magic aromatherapy products for massage and self-care.

Dr. Sarah Bryan will have her guide dog present.