DOGA combines the benefits of yoga with the companionship and love of our furry family members. In this article, we’ll share its benefits and how it can enhance your well-being and your bond with your dog. No prior Yoga experience is required to participate as the instructors keep the yoga poses very accessible – chairs and other props are provided as required.
What is DOGA, and where did it originate?
A combination of the words ‘dog’ and ‘yoga’, DOGA traces its roots back to the early 2000s when Suzi Teitelman, a yoga instructor in New York City, discovered the calming effect her dog had on her yoga practice. She began incorporating her dog into her yoga routines, and DOGA was born. Since then, DOGA has gained popularity with dog lovers worldwide.
DOGA is taught in different ways – sometimes your dog is used as an accessory in various yoga poses, and in other classes, the focus is practicing yoga while your dog is watching, and sometimes your dog will choose to duplicate the same yoga pose you are working on.
If you are already a yoga student and you watch your dog stretch, you may notice similarities between various yoga poses and the stretches that dogs automatically perform. (back leg stretching, dog bow, front leg stretch, arching of their back, etc.).
In the DOGA classes at Muttz with Mannerz, we do a combination of very gentle yoga poses combined with some gentle massage work and breathing exercises with your dog.
What are the Benefits of DOGA?
Bonding and Connection
DOGA strengthens the bond between you and your dog through shared experiences and physical touch. The practice encourages trust, communication, and mutual relaxation, deepening the connection you have with your dog.
Stress Relief and Relaxation
Yoga has long been recognized for its stress-reducing and relaxation properties, and the same holds true for DOGA. The soothing presence of your dog and the mindful movements of yoga can create a calming environment, helping you let go of tension and find inner peace.
DOGA incorporates gentle stretches and poses that can improve flexibility, balance, and circulation for both you and your dog. You will also be encouraged to spend some time feeling and massaging your four-legged companion. DOGA promotes joint health, relieves muscle tension, and enhances overall physical well-being.
Promotes Emotional Well-Being
Dogs are known for their unconditional love and emotional support. Practicing DOGA allows you to tap into the positive energy and emotional healing that dogs naturally provide, promoting emotional well-being and reducing feelings of anxiety or depression for both you and your dog.
DOGA offers a unique and enriching experience for both humans and dogs. By merging the principles of yoga with the companionship of our four-legged friends, we strengthen our bond with our canine companions, promote relaxation and stress relief, improve our physical fitness, and enhance mindfulness.
So, why not unroll your yoga mat, invite your furry friend, and embark on a journey of connection, wellness, and joy through the captivating practice of DOGA?
To learn more about DOGA and our unique DOGA offering at Muttz with Mannerz™, please listen to our recent Podcast Episode 26: Why You and Your Dog will Love DOGA with Barbara Rogina at https://muttzwithmannerz.com/podcast/episode-026/.
Register for an upcoming DOGA class (or one of our other classes) at https://muttzwithmannerz.com/classes.