If you have wanted to give yoga another go now that some of the COVID restrictions are rolling back, let us suggest a twist to the typical class. Give it a go, or should we say “GOAT” for a unique yoga class you won’t soon forget. Today we will look at this fun yoga trend you might want to consider, goat yoga. Read on to learn what it is and why you might want to try it post COVID:
What is Goat Yoga?
When you think of yoga supplies, you likely think about some printed yoga pants, a great yoga outfit, luxury activewear, a fabulous yoga mat, perhaps a cool water bottle, etc. We would implore you to not stop there, though. We recommend adding just one more element….a goat! That’s right, goat yoga is a trend that allows you to practice yoga in either the presence or sometimes in tandem with live goats.
When Was Goat Yoga Born? Where Did it Originate?
While some people claim the first goat yoga experience they witnessed was a video posted on Instagram by Rachel Breathen, according to many other reports, goat yoga was the brainchild of Lainey Morse, who offered her first goat yoga class in 2016 in Willamette Valley, Oregon. Morse said the impetus behind goat yoga was a rough period in her personal life. During this time, according to Morse, she had the idea for pairing goats and yoga in classes. She thought it was a good idea because “It’s impossible to be sad and depressed when there are baby goats jumping around.”
Originally, Morse’s idea just involved visiting goats during a goat happy hour on her farm. A yoga instructor, Heather Davis, who visited the goat happy hour, suggested combining the goats in a yoga session to Morse. This started a successful class trend that has since moved across the nation increasing in popularity nationwide. Now, you can attend a goat yoga class virtually anywhere in the United States, no matter where you live.
A goat yoga class typically pairs baby goats with yoga participants, with the instructor encouraging interaction between the goats and yoga students throughout specific poses. In most cases, the yoga instructor will teach the yoga class normally, but the goats are free to roam around and climb on the yogi as they practice. Of course, trainers can encourage goats to move into certain positions during specific poses. For example, an instructor might get goats to go under the legs during warrior or jump on the back of a participant during bridge, wheel, upward dog, etc.
What’s so Special About Goat Yoga?
While the presence of cute baby goats will not help you hold a pose longer or reach a deeper level of zen, they will promote an atmosphere of light-heartedness and uplift the spirit. Yoga instructor Jodi Michaels of Laughing Frog Yoga explains it as follows:
“Let’s face it: The whole idea of goat yoga is a little absurd, but don’t discount it as a novelty. The goat forces you to be light-hearted and not take every little thing so seriously.”
That explanation by Michaels says it all, goat yoga is all about creating a light-hearted safe environment where yoga participants feel at ease. We feel yoga studies should embrace it as a way to engage people who might never try traditional yoga, who might even feel intimidated by the concept. Who wouldn’t love to spend an hour with a cute baby goat, though? Their presence instantly puts people at ease and a smile on their face. In this post COVID world, that alone makes it worth doing and something you have "goat" to try in our opinion.