Goat Yoga + Special Events
My instagram bio says “goat yoga, among other things,” because a great number of the queries I receive are about the goat yoga classes I facilitate (that’s yoga alongside goats, for those of you not in the know. The people who attend practice yoga; the goats do not.) I’ve been interviewed by several media outlets, and people always ask how I came up with such a clever idea (answer: I didn’t).
I adore leading these classes, surrounded by the beauty of the natural world, cuddly goats, and fluffy alpaca. The yogis arrive in a great mood: happy, curious, excited, and enthusiastic (and the goats love the attention!) My kitten yoga classes are similarly inspiring to me as a yoga instructor-- watching those tiny kittens playfully tear around the room as participants rest in savasana evokes joy, awe, and wonder in all of us. The cultivation of these positive emotional energies (or “rasas,” in sanskrit), are a crucial part of our yoga practice-- just as important as the poses and the breath.
I am also a Trauma Informed Yoga teacher. Most of each work day is spent in private sessions with individuals who have experienced trauma, and may struggle with PTSD. This work is important and fulfilling, and often emotionally difficult. I’ve spent a good deal of time and effort training to become a yoga teacher; I continue to seek out educational opportunities and to develop my own practice. I take this work that I love seriously. These two sides of what I do aren’t so different from one another, though. Seeing people work hard to overcome the pain and trauma in their lives, and seeing how yoga contributes to their healing evokes joy, awe, and wonder in ME every single day. This is the gift yoga gives me. The ways to approach yoga are varied, but the benefits are limitless.
Goat Yoga FAQs
DO THE GOATS DO YOGA?
The goats do not do the yoga poses. They participate with their adorable and cheerful presence. Some of them like to jump up on the backs of the yogis, and several like to be cuddled.
WHERE DO YOU GET THE GOATS?
I work exclusively with Walnut Creek Farm. The owner of the farm, Dr. Maureen Noftsinger, is a veterinarian, and keeps the goats on her farm for brush removal, and as family pets. Dr. Noftsinger and members of her family attend each event, and they care for their animals ethically and kindly. Dr. Noftsinger talks a bit about her herd at each session, and is happy to answer questions about the animals and their care.
WHY GOATS AND YOGA?
Yoga with animals is joyful! People who have never practiced yoga show up at goat yoga alongside seasoned practitioners; it’s accessible to everyone. People leave smiling, laughing, and relaxed. The goats are cute and funny and friendly. The practice is especially appealing to city-dwellers who wouldn’t otherwise get to interact with farm animals.
CAN I BOOK A PRIVATE GOAT YOGA SESSION?
Private sessions start at $3500 for up to 100 people. We aren’t able to accommodate smaller groups at this time. Smaller groups are encouraged to book a block of tickets for an already-scheduled event, and we will make sure your party is grouped together during the event.
DO THEY LIKE TO BE HELD? CAN I HOLD ONE?
We let the goats decide if they’d like to be held, but several of them do like to snuggle. We ask that you don’t grab them or hold them if they’re trying to wiggle out of your arms.
WHY CAN’T CHILDREN UNDER 10 ATTEND?
At the moment, our insurance restricts us from hosting children under 10. We hope to develop a goat yoga program for families and younger children in the future.
I DON’T PRACTICE YOGA. CAN I COME WATCH?
Everyone who enters the goat yoga area *must* have a valid ticket, regardless of their intention to practice yoga. Our available space is limited, so we don’t have room for non-ticket holders. Yoga experience is neither required nor expected; the goats won’t judge your practice, and we regularly welcome participants of all ages, sizes, and abilities. If you’d like to attend and skip the yoga poses, that’s fine, but rest assured that the yoga portion of the class is very mellow, and participation in the poses is not required.
ARE THEY POTTY TRAINED?
The goats are farm animals. They aren’t potty trained. The poop is comprised of tiny, dry pellets (like rabbit food), and it is easily swept away. We have plenty of cleaning supplies, hand sanitizer, and anti-bacterial wipes on hand.