It’s summer, it’s hot out and you’re craving a cold one. But FIRST, yoga. THEN beer. There’s a class for that™ – our new catchphrase for all the crazy yoga+ everything-you-could-ever-think-of combos springing up all over the place. For instance, when you want beer AND yoga, just go to a brewery! Yoga, it’s not just for bars anymore.
Brewery Yoga is the latest thing for people looking for a stretch, a buzz, social mingling and some light conversation (or heavy depending on that buzz part). Breweries all over the country are taking the wine+yoga idea and expanding it to have even more cutesie names like Happy Hour Yoga with Joe Sixpack in Philadelphia, BrewAsanas in Boulder and Denver, and Three Sheets to the Warrior Pose in Wilmington, Delaware.
Bendy Brewski in Charleston, SC is the catchy-named brainchild of yoga teacher Beth Cosi a proud Lululemon ambassador who partners up with local breweries to hold yoga classes – “45 minutes of hatha yin yoga blend” – followed by beer tastings at 11am on Sundays, the holiest of beer hours. There are also evening classes on Tuesdays.
“I have been very fortunate, blessed really, to be at the right place at the right time and at the crossroads where two passions, two crafts collide,” Beth says on her website.
And people love it. Besides the beer aspect, oh, and the yoga, there’s a social element where people can feel comfortable to be themselves. We’re betting the beer goggles help, too.
“The largest component is connection: They get permission to hang out,” Cosi told the New York Times in an interview. “People talk and laugh. It’s very social. It’s totally about community. The yoga is secondary. It’s a way to bring people together.”
Not everyone agrees with yoganebriation, of course. Rhonda Hobgood, the owner of Salt Room Yoga in Seattle says, “If you’re drinking, you’re detracting from that very subtle process of fine-tuning your consciousness. Alcohol is a toxin. It creates its own state of mental being, which typically people use as an escape. The practice of yoga is the exactly the opposite of escaping yourself. You want to go full into whatever you’re experiencing, without altering it with an external substance.”
Subtle process..fine-tuning consciousness…yeah yeah, whatevs. Escaping is sexy! And beer is, well, it’s beer. Have you ever had an alcoholic drink after a cleansing yoga practice? Hello buzztown!
So what about the “it’s introducing yoga to people who would’ve never tried it otherwise” argument? Certainly there’s something to be said for that. The students speak for themselves:
For Mark Rodan, now a regular at the “Detox Retox” class at Angel City Brewery in downtown Los Angeles where a 90 minute practice is followed by a cold beer, it gets sacred. The class is “a place for people without spiritual beliefs to get the community aspect of a church,” Rodan says. “That’s what we have at Detox Retox.”
Peter Volk, one of the Bendy Brewski students explained it all in a quote from the Bendy Brewski website: “What I like about it is that it (the class) is not intimidating and I know that if it hurts, beer will always come afterward.”
There you have it. It’s Yoga Beer Church where your penance is also your cold, bubbly, buzz-inducing reward.
Beer’s not your thing? Try the Lululemon-sponsored Yoga and Margaritas class at a famous tequila bar in Albuquerque, NM. Or, you know, next time you go to class, BYOB.
[Via New York Times]
images via bendybrewskiyoga.com; delawaretoday.com