Yogis achieve zen with farm animals

Video by Meredith Aldis | Broadcast Intern, Story by Kassidy Woytek

Instead of following along with the yoga instructor, many participants of Goat Yoga yesterday chose to take a break from their poses to cuddle with baby goats. The event consisted of four sessions of 100 people each, and each participant received a Goat Yoga tank top as part of the $10 entry fee.

According to Indiana, Pa., sophomore Brian Waryck, the Baylor Chamber of Commerce originally only planned to have two sessions of Goat Yoga. When online registration filled up within a day, the organization decided to open up two more to accommodate the high demand.

Yesterday morning, students were able to achieve their zen while simutaneously cuddling with goats. This event was one of the most popular events, causing the organization to have to open four sessions of yoga instead of the original two they had planned. Photo credit: Liesje Powers

Waryck served as the Animal Coordinator for Dia del Oso this year. As soon as Chamber began discussing the idea of Goat Yoga, he reached out to Ewe Pet Petting Zoo to see if they could borrow their animals. Although Goat Yoga was a foreign idea to the petting zoo, they agreed to allow Chamber to use around 50 goats for the event.

“I just emailed them and said, ‘Hi, how many goats do you have and can we use all of them?’” Waryck said.

According to Waryck, the idea of the unusual combination came from a woman in Oregon named Lainey Morse. According to her website, Goat Yoga is “really about disconnecting with day to day stress, sickness or depression and focusing on positive and happy vibes.”

Waryck said he believes that because goats are outgoing, playful and have an easy-going attitude, they are the perfect animals to be paired with yoga.

Belton freshman Logan Zwerneman said he didn’t know what to expect before participating in Goat Yoga, but he had even more fun than he originally anticipated.

“The goats are kind of just there for comedic relief,” Zwerneman said. “It’s hilarious just having goats walking around while you’re there.”

Zwerneman said he first heard about the event from his friends. He thought the idea was so strange, he had to register just to see what it was like.

Dani Owens, the owner of the Yoga Bar, taught the last two sessions of Goat Yoga. Before Chamber asked her to be a goat yoga instructor for Dia, she had never heard of the concept. She said it seemed to her that participants gradually become more interested in playing with the goats than doing yoga.

“My first session, people were sticking with me for the yoga and playing with the goats,” Owens said. “By the second session, people just wanted to play with the goats.”

Owens said they from talking to friends who went to Baylor, she thinks the original idea brought more students to campus than in previous years.