Yoga has been around for centuries but has become increasingly popular throughout Western culture in recent years. With its increase in popularity, it’s not a surprise that some new and unusual styles of yoga have begun to arise. One new style of yoga that has started to gain popularity, or “pup-ularity” if you will, is known as Doga.
Doga is yoga for both you and your dog. The name Doga obviously comes from the combination of the words dog and yoga. Dogs naturally do yoga on their own multiple times a day. Dog owners constantly see their pets performing perfect poses when they wake up from a nap or simply when they need a stretch. Some poses actually come from these little stretches that dogs do. Downward and Upward facing dog are traditional yoga poses that are inspired by our furry friends.
There are a few things that should be brought to a Doga class to have a successful practice with your pup.
There are two different types of Doga class. One style involves both the pet owner and dog practicing yoga, while the other only involves the pet owner practicing yoga while the dogs run around together and socialize. If both you and your dog are practicing then you should bring a mat not only for yourself, but for your dog as well. You should bring water for both you and your dog to make sure neither of you get dehydrated during practice. It’s also important to bring treats for your dog to make sure they concentrate on the practice. If just you are practicing while your dog socializes, then you only need to bring a mat for yourself and water for both you and your pup.
Doga classes that involve both the pet owner and his dog involve poses that are pretty basic but create a bonding experience between pet and owner. Some examples of these poses are Chuturanga, Forward Bend, and Savasana.
To get into Chuturanga, lie your dog flat on their stomach while you pet their back.
To get into Forward Bend, stand with your feet hips distance apart with your dog in front of you. Bend forward with your hands and head low. You can pick up your dog to add weight and to deepen the stretch.
To get into Savasana, lie your dog flat on their back and rub their belly. Practicing yoga with your dog builds bonds and trust, aids in relaxation and stress relief, improves circulation and range of motion, and helps to mellow hyperactive dogs. Doga classes that involve just the pet owner are not just beneficial for the pet owners, but they are also fun for the dogs.
Yoga on its own is an amazing experience, but adding your dog into the mix creates a whole new level of fun and creativity. Dogs add to the yoga experience because they constantly live in the present. Humans have a hard time trying to live in the now so they constantly look forward instead. Dogs teach us to appreciate the present moment and thrive in it.