Goats and Yoga: Not a Ba-aa-aa-d Way to De-Stress!

Students gather in the residential quad for Goat Yoga (Photo courtesy of Craig Akiri ’23).
Grace Pryor, Contributing Writer

Last Saturday, April 15, 2023, was nearly eighty degrees and sunny – perfect for Wooster Activities Crew (WAC)’s Field Day. Held on the Residential Quad from 1 to 4 p.m., its activities included yard games like spikeball and cornhole, as well as the main event: two sessions of goat yoga. 

Goat yoga consisted of a fairly simple yoga class, complete with sun salutations and warrior poses. What makes it special was, of course, the addition of baby goats, who wandered around the area eating grass, climbing on people and occasionally trying to nibble on clothes (which is why we were instructed to avoid loose-fitting clothing). Goat yoga was not entirely glamorous – the participants were advised to bring an old blanket to put on the yoga mat, in case the goats had to go during the session. Thankfully, that did not happen to me! Some of the six goats were also rather noisy. 

While participating in the second goat yoga class of the day, I soon noticed a conundrum: it is incredibly hard to focus on doing yoga when there is a baby goat on your yoga mat, practically compelling you to pet it. That’s okay, though, I learned. The instructor, Lana Sevel of Lana’s Loving Care in Avon Lake, said that goat yoga is primarily about having fun and lowering stress levels. She also emphasized the adaptability of the session, saying that we should modify poses to be comfortable if needed. After half an hour of yoga, the remaining half of the session was dedicated to letting the participants just hang out with the goats, petting and holding them, as well as taking pictures. 

Goat yoga is generally considered to have been invented in 2016 by the farmer Lainey Morse. During a difficult time in her life, she realized that her goats brought her joy, and wanted to share that with others. Goat yoga is not a traditional form of yoga, but it is not really about the yoga at all – instead, the purpose is “grinning, laughing and having fun with goats.” 

Though she did get kicked in the stomach by one of the goats, Emma Osko ’26 said that the yoga was “adorable,” adding that “we should definitely get a petting zoo.” Though that is unlikely, the goats did come from the Valley Exotic petting zoo in Eaton, Ohio. 

WAC has hosted a Field Day before, but goat yoga was a new addition, born from throwing around ideas during meetings. They “wanted to add something new” to the event. Clearly, it was successful, since over seventy people attended. During my yoga class at 3 p.m., all the provided yoga mats were full, and others had brought their own mats. I also noticed many people come up during the session just to pet the goats! Though not many people were playing the lawn games when I first arrived at Field Day, the goat yoga attracted many people who weren’t there before to hang out on the Res Quad and play cornhole. 

Kalee Henderson ’26 was also pleased with the events of Field Day, saying that the goat yoga made for a “fun Saturday afternoon.” The cute baby goats and relaxing yoga were an ideal combination during such a busy time of the year, and the beautiful weather made it an even nicer day. Not a ba-a-ad way to destress, to be sure! 

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