The latest trend in wellness: Goat yoga was conceived as a type of yoga that features real-life goats. Goat yoga first came to our awareness through Instagram’s finest, from Kate Beckinsale to Kevin Hart. In case you haven’t heard about it, here are some things worth knowing about it.
It Happened Through a Fortuitous String of Events
Caprine vinyasa, or more popularly termed ‘goat yoga,’ originated on a farm in Oregon in 2016 and was the entirely accidental invention of Lainey Morse, who found solace in spending time with the goats on her farm after a bout of anxiety and stress following her divorce along with an autoimmune disease diagnosis. Lainey Morse soon started inviting her friends over to do the same, calling it “Goat Happy Hour.” One of her friends was a yoga instructor who proposed they conduct yoga classes in Morse’s mountain-view field. From then on, the idea went viral and grew legs of its own, and the trend made its way all across the world.
The Therapeutic Benefits of Animals
Animal-assisted therapy has been shown to help with lowering blood pressure and cholesterol and can even help diminish overall physical pain. The mental health advantages are abundant, too, with evidence of animals helping with levels of anxiety, increasing mental alertness, and reducing feelings of loneliness. Goats have been said to be the ideal therapy animals as they can easily bond with humans, meaning that baby and adult goats aren’t shy and will just come up to a stranger asking for cuddles.
This type of yoga has been described as a breath of fresh air, kind of like a break from one’s usual mindset as it helps disconnect from everyday stress and helps you to focus on positive and happy vibes. This type of class can really help you get out of your own head. Goat-free yoga environments are often silent which can sometimes add to your daily frustrations instead of alleviating them, goat yoga won’t allow you the same quietness to focus on your anxieties, but rather nudges you into having a funny and strangely calm time.
What You Can Expect
There’s no need to be daunted by these classes as they have drawn in many who have zero yoga experience and the poses consist primarily of beginner-friendly. They are open to yogis of every skill level. During a session, participants are welcome to pet the goats and play with them as much as their heart desires. Some yogis get tired and sit down, the baby goats curl up in their laps for a cuddle. So you can expect a giggle-filled, concentration-challenging experience of baby goats climbing on your back or licking your feet while you attempt pigeon pose.