Willamette Valley in Oregon has long been home to a unique brand of people that don’t like to follow national trends. Instead, these frontier folk pave their own oaths and this newest trend coming from the valley is no different. Lainey Morse, a goat farmer has combined yoga with a petting zoo, yes, it’s Goat Yoga. You may think, this has to be a joke, nope; it real and currently has a waiting list of more than 1,700 people.
So, you are asking yourself what the heck is goat yoga? Simple, it yoga in a rustic setting, think a barn or field, with goats just meandering around. According to Morse, goats are therapeutic animals, causing relaxing effects in people and their presence calms the soul. She used goats to help her recover from an autoimmune disease, Sjogren’s syndrome. Morse claims that the goats saved her live and just having them around comforted her.
This all seems very Portland to me. I feel like this is straight out of an episode of Portlandia. For those of you not in the know, Portlandia is a show on IFC that depicts Portland, OR as a hipster haven and oddball asylum. Can’t you imagine seeing Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein, stars of Portlandia, interacting with these yoga goats?
She currently has eight goats, five miniatures, one adult Boer and two babies. “It’s hard to be sad or depressed when you have baby goats jumping around you,” Morse added. She began having people over for what she called “Goat Happy Hour,” where she would just have people over and they would hang out with the animals.
A yoga instructor came to a goat happy hour and immediately asked Morse is she could teach a class in the picturesque farm. Morse instantaneously agreed and a new trend was born. As soon as it started, the word spread and people were traveling hundreds of miles to try it out.
People mentioned that the environment helped them disconnect from the modern world and be one with the planet. People have been flocking to Morse’ farm since she began offering classes in August. Fans have not let up, even attending classes in 25-degree weather. That’s way too cold for doing yoga outside, but I guess adding goats may change your threshold for temperature.
Morse says that goats like people and they thrive off the energy of the visiting guests. She even said that the goats have been overall happier since the goat yoga started.
Maybe this trend will catch on and spread to other barnyard animals. I’d try llama yoga or pig Pilates. Lets get these ideas flowing people, if this country can make the Pet Rock a best seller, why not goat yoga?
Academia is catching on, as Oregon State University is providing goat yoga for their students this spring. What a way to relax after a tough final exam.
Goat yoga combines cute animals, beautiful nature and a good, healthy workout. I see this trend catching on, why not put two successful things together, just look at combo Taco Bells and Pizza Huts. Ok, so maybe not everything combined is great, but we can all agree that goat yoga is a fascinating mixture and worth a try.