Are you a cat lover? Do you ever feel the need to decompress and step away from the stresses of your life for a while? What if I told you there’s a way to get your animal therapy fix while relaxing your body and clearing your mind? The yoga with cats class at Good Mews Animal Foundation does just that. In this article, I will tell you about my experience in class, as well as the benefits of the yoga with cats program and how to participate.
The Yoga With Cats Classes
There are several things to consider when taking a yoga class. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned practitioner, yoga is designed to relieve physical and mental stress. In order for yoga to be effective, you need a good work space and an experienced instructor. Good Mews does a great job supplying you with both.
1. The Space: The class takes place in the shelters main cat room. They limit the classes to 15 people to ensure that everyone has room to move. It is quiet and clean and for added relaxation they play music and turn the overhead lights off. You can also hear the sound of running water because the cat fountains are working in the background. The cats are allowed to roam freely during the class.
2. The Instructor: The instructors are very knowledgeable and welcoming. Sheila, my instructor for the class I took, provided guidance and did a great job keeping everyone focused on the exercises. She reminded us to watch for the cats before changing positions and performed many floor-based exercises so we could interact with them. The class is beginner level and well balanced. It is comfortable for individuals that are new to yoga but still provides a solid experience to those that are familiar with it.
3. What the Cats Bring to the Class: Performing yoga with the cats in the room was the coolest experience. Surprisingly, their movement about the room wasn’t distracting. In fact, it encouraged focus and reminded me to stay in the present. Mindfulness is an important part of yoga, and the cats added to that part of the practice.
Laughter is also great medicine and the cats behavior will give you a chuckle or two. They darted about the room and enjoyed rubbing against the students faces. They also rolled on their mats. Their interaction added something special.
The Benefits of the Yoga With Cats Program
The program is a win-win for everyone. If you’re still not convinced, here are a few reasons to try it.
1. The $20 registration goes directly towards cat care. It provides food, medication, and other supplies. You’ll leave knowing you’ve helped make a difference for the cats.
2. Yoga itself is beneficial to your overall health. It reduces tension in the body and helps you quiet your mind. The class gives you 1 hour of “me” time.
3. The program raises awareness for the shelter and gives cat lovers a chance to engage with one another. You can tour the facility afterwards. Who knows? You might find your next furever friend.
How to Participate in the Yoga With Cats Classes
1. Go to the Good Mews Animal Foundation website to register at the following link: https://goodmews.org/
2. Scroll to the bottom of the page to see the dates and times for the classes and pay online to register.
3. Make sure to wear comfortable clothes and bring your yoga mat with you. I recommend bringing a towel for added cushion.