There’s something stirring Tuesday evenings at the only cafe for cats in Seattle: the Seattle Meowtropolitan. Those of us looking to beat the winter blues are welcome to attend Yoga with Cats every Tuesday at 8:30pm. For $20, yogis and cat enthusiasts alike can enjoy an hour long yoga class equipped with adorably furry cats! The cats are from the Regional Animal Services of King County. Not only do you get to snuggle up to cats, you also get a complementary cup of tea, courtesy of the cafe.
While this is an opportunity to connect with yourself through yoga, proceeds from the event go towards rehoming cats through Regional Animal Services. Colleen Bell leads the Hatha flow class with her feline companion, Clouds. Colleen teaches yoga classes in the Seattle area throughout the week, but the Seattle Meowtropolitan is the most unique experience in her schedule. She jokes, “Clouds is the real teacher here. I’m just here to help.”
As Colleen laid out her mat, Clouds excitedly jumped onto her mat and immediately made himself comfortable. The cats here are no stranger to yogis. Beyond the yoga with cats at Meowtropolitan, guests of the cafe can book up to 50 minutes of play time with cats from the shelter. Tonight, we had about 8 cats climbing around the cat lounge. As we rolled out our own mats, the cats began to stir curiously from their nooks.
Before beginning our practice, Colleen pointed out that with the full moon this evening, the cats would be especially active. The class started with cat and cow flows to warm up. As we moved between poses, the cats began to weave between students and playfully darted from one side of the room to the other. It was hard to resist my natural reaction to want to cuddle with all the cats! As a dog person, I’ve always felt that cats could not be bothered with my presence in the room. This was not the case tonight. The cats in the lounge curiously engaged the attendees and had no problem bopping at our feet as we flowed through our practice. When it came towards the end of our practice, we even had a few cats join us in savasana on our bellies.
All in all, this was a very fun approach to yoga. I found myself less concerned with what was going on with the outside world and more focused on my practice and sharing moments with the cats. From this experience, I learned that yoga can be an opportunity to connect with the curious and playful creature that lives inside each and everyone one of us. When asked about how doing yoga with cats can improve our practice, Colleen stated, “Yoga is about being present. Who else can teach us to be more present than cats?”
What is your favorite animal to yoga with? Send your animal yoga photos to firstname.lastname@example.org to be featured with your furry friends!
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