Looking for a new workout? How about yoga with a twist – or more specifically, goat yoga?
It started in the state of Oregon and has now spread across the U.S.
CGTN’s Frances Kuo has more on this fitness fad.
On a farm in Nokesville, Virginia, there are the typical cast of characters – the chickens and the alpacas.
But, the real stars of the show are the 20-some resident goats.
On, one Saturday afternoon, the little guys aren’t just for milking.
“They will know you and love you and give you the love back,” explains Susanne Marsh, co-owner of Little Goat Farm at the Lake. “They do sense emotion which makes them much more people-like.” Marsh and her husband, Bob, own the farm.
They trace the start of their latest venture back to an organic moment out in the field. “I just started stretching. Goats would come on me and climb on me. And people would see that and go, ‘can I do that with you?’” said Marsh.
The goats’ affinity for affection got the Marshes chewing over an idea – to ride the wave of a fitness craze called “goat yoga.”
“The first reaction is, ‘do the goats do yoga?” said Beth Wolfe, a yoga instructor.
Not exactly -In this class, people do the yoga. The goats just come along for the ride, on people’s backs.
“I am calm and also excited and slightly nervous!!” Gage Javier as an eager goat jumped on her shoulders said.
Some admit that around the goats, it’s hard to do the actual yoga.
But, Wolfe said that yoga is as much about the spiritual as the physical. “Everyone thinks of yoga and the poses,” explains Wolfe. “But yoga is a big concept. We breathe, we’re present, we’re grateful.”
“I feel like it’s more of a fun, exciting thing that draws you to yoga, makes it different. It’ll make me want to do yoga more,” said Mackenzie Nemoto, a yoga student. The farm owners said classes go pretty smoothly most of the time but every now and then, there are some mishaps.
“They ARE farm animals, they do pee, they do poop. It’s very manageable, just like little rabbit poop and we have wipes,” said Wolfe.
But it’s more than goat waste students are ridding.
“I’ve never laughed so much doing yoga,” said Javier. “It’s great to come outside your comfort zone and do something different.”
For an hour, the hundred or so students in the class can leave their stressful lives behind.
“It’s great to experience nature, sort of in your face,” said Brian Wenham, who was taking the class as a birthday present.
And maybe, the goats get a kick out of it too.
“They love it more than people do, I think,” said Marsh.
Behind the wool: CGTN’s Frances Kuo tries out goat yoga
A reporter’s job is not easy, especially when it comes to working with goats. Check out CGTN’s Frances Kuo hilarious outtakes that didn’t make the final cut.