Yoga and Cats: The Benefits of Asana With Kitties
Cats can keep you company and make you laugh, and they could even have healing powers that include helping to reduce your blood pressure and stress level. But have you ever considered bringing cats into your yoga practice? After all, yoga can be incredibly healing, so why not combine two things that could improve your well-being?
Yoga with animals has been a growing trend, with some shelters even jumping on board and offering yoga classes with cats in order to attract more adopters. But what are the benefits that you can derive from combining your asana practice with feline friends?
Get All the Benefits of Yoga, and Have More Fun Along the Way
Yoga on its own can help strengthen your muscles and improve your balance, as well as ward off depression and anxiety. Imagine being able to maintain your balance with a cat sharing your mat, and consider that kitties are known for helping to improve your mood as well. It’s like taking your yoga practice to another level.
Plus, for a lot of yogis, their practice is a serious one. Adding cats to the mix is a great way to make the class a more lighthearted experience. Those who have already given it a try have found that the class becomes even more relaxing.
Mental and Physical Wellness
Practicing a range of yoga poses while a cat is lounging on your mat, playing with your hair, or walking between your legs can be challenging and distracting, but you’ll likely be giggling the entire time. Who could resist the adorable face of a kitty looking at you while you’re in downward dog, right? And as you work on maintaining your focus to hold your balance and keep your body in proper alignment, despite what the cat might be doing, you might even realize that you’re getting more out of every pose.
In addition to being a physical practice, though, yoga is also a mental practice. It involves honing in on your breath, fusing your breath with your movements, and becoming more present. Anyone who has been around cats long enough knows that these creatures know how to be present and they know how to have fun. So when you practice yoga with cats, you might even find that your mental health improves too.
An Opportunity to Connect with Animals and Nature
Life often gets complicated for people following busy schedules, and yoga can serve as an opportunity to disconnect and go within for at least a little while. Beyond that, many people crave interacting with animals that display innocence and peacefulness.
So when you need simplicity and when you want to make that all-important connection to the natural world again, yoga with animals, such as cats, can be a wonderful way to feel grounded and centered.
Search for a “Yoga with Cats” Class Near You!
You might be surprised to find out that there are yoga with cats classes available in your area. Check cat cafes, shelters, and yoga studios to see what your options are. Or, if you have a kitty at home, just roll out your mat and let her hang out while you flow through your vinyasa.
Lisa Selvaggio is a freelance writer and editor, and our resident cats-pert, with certifications in pet nutrition and pet first aid. An advocate for better treatment of all animals, she enjoys producing content that educates others, helps them understand animals better, and inspires them to help, whether that means volunteering at a shelter, fostering strays, or simply giving their own pets a safe and happy home to live in.
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