Yoga with Goats

If you enjoy exercise or yoga practice in a playful and meaningful way, then Yoga with Goats classes at Returning Home Farm in Verona, PA are for you! And for everyone else – all ages, all bodies, all skill levels (including no skill).

If you’ve ever said “I’m not flexible enough to practice yoga,” or “I’m way too laid back for yoga,” or “I am not laid back enough for yoga,” those are three great reasons for practicing yoga with goats.

Dress in loose or stretchy clothing that you don’t mind getting hay all over (also, the goats aren’t house trained), and bring a mat and an open attitude. We do have a few mats to share.

All classes are $15, or $10 for plot owners at Penn Forest Natural Burial Park.

Classes are one hour with the goats wandering among us, plus 30 minutes afterwards to commune with the farm animals or for a guided tour of the burial park.

Please park on Return Road opposite the barnyard, or in the Penn Forest parking lot.

If the weather isn’t good for outdoor yoga, we’ll retreat to the barn, which can hold about 16 people. Register for class to hold your spot.

Schedule

Yoga with Goats 2018 season

Classes vary in days and sometimes skip a week, so please read the schedule carefully! All classes are one hour with time afterward to mingle with the goats or for a guided tour of Penn Forest Natural Burial Park.

Classes will be cancelled if temperature is below 50F AND it’s raining. If it’s warmer and raining, or colder but not raining, we’ll take shelter in the barn, which has limited space, so sign up for class here! If it’s sunny we’ll be outside with a tarp for shade. Wear sunscreen and a hat, and bring plenty of water!

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Date Time Class Teacher
Saturday Sept 1 10:00 YogaNuvo Flow Myrna
Saturday Sept 8 10:00 Yin Kate
Saturday Oct 6 10:00 YogaNuvo Flow Myrna

Classes

Kundalini

Kundalini yoga combines rhythmic movement, breathing techniques, bodily vibrations created with chanting and singing, and other kriyas to tap the deep reservoir of potential energy that is innate in every one of us. It uses the body to create an immersion experience of awareness and clarity for the mind. Kundalini Yoga creates a sense of good health by strengthening and balancing the nervous system and glandular system.It energizes the body, calms the mind and nourishes the soul. If you can breathe, you can practice kundalini yoga.

YogaNuvo Flow

YogaNuvo has a goal to make fitness options available to people of all physical abilities. Even if you never exercised before, are uncomfortable with your body image, or have limited flexibility, this training is for you. If you want to experience the well-documented health benefits of yoga, including muscle strength, balance, bone density, flexibility, improved posture and circulation, not to mention the feeling of well-being known as “bliss,” give this class a try. You may even begin to experience more deep and refreshing sleep.

Yin

Yin yoga classes lengthen and strengthen connective tissues by sustaining passive floor postures for a few minutes at a time, cultivating supple and resilient joints and minds. The practice is designed to stress ligaments, tendons, and fascia within their natural range of motion, encouraging the body’s own systems to build them up and get them juicy. Yin yoga also works to train the quality of the mind’s concentration and open up tight spots to let energy flow. A mix of silence, poetry and yoga philosophy support you through the poses.

Teachers

Daniel

Daniel Chamberlin is a resident yoga teacher at the Indianapolis Zen Center. His Yin classes are informed by traditional meditation training, plant medicine adventures, work as a deep rural EMT, and a career as an artist and writer. He is also the host of Inter-Dimensional Music, a broadcast of cosmic metal and crusty New Age heard on 99.1FM WQRT in central Indiana, and 93.5FM Marfa Public Radio in far west Texas.

Moni

Moni Wesner started her yogic journey in 1996 at Omega with a weeklong course on Mindfullness Meditation with Jon Kabat-Zinn and Saki Santorelli. This led to a daily practice of meditation and gentle Hatha Yoga. At age 60, she wanted to find a way to become a healthy and happy old woman. In the following years she studied more Hatha Yoga and Ashtanga Yoga with nationally known teachers at Omega each summer.

In 2001 she found her true teacher, Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa. It was the start of the study of Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan. As a retired physician, the ancient and pure teachings made perfect sense to her as all aspects of it can be explained by modern science. She became a teacher in 2005, just to learn more about the science and art of Kundalini Yoga for her personal reasons.

Once she was certified as a teacher by the International Kundalini Yoga Teachers Association, students appeared and she has taught
students of all ages and all abilities ever since. In her words – as long as we can breathe, we can practice yoga. In her classes the experienced yogi or athlete and the very beginner have a meaningful experience. Moni considers herself the best advertisement of Kundalini Yoga – 21 years later she is indeed a happy, healthy, drug free old woman!

Myrna

Myrna took her very first yoga class in 2002 and it was love at first full body twist. She began training immediately, becoming certified to teach in 2004 by the National Exercise & Sports Trainers Association. Already an aerobics instructor at the YMCA since 1998, the shift to yoga was seamless. She since has taught workshops in and around Pittsburgh, including a teacher training at Schoolhouse Yoga, warm-ups for runners at the Pittsburgh Marathon and annual workshops for young adults at the Children’s Museum.

YogaNuvo was born when she became aware of a need for affordable, alternative and gentle physical fitness options in the community. Having taken classes in belly dance, Pilates, tai chi and hula hooping (believe it), she began to fuse these disciplines into her yoga classes and formed YogaNuvo with its signature flow.

Kate

Kate flirted with yoga for a dozen years, but didn’t believe it had any benefits beyond physical exercise until committing to regular practice in 2007. After three weeks, the mental and spiritual benefits of a quieter mind and a more open heart began to reveal themselves, inviting her to explore why yoga works so much better than antidepressants to help you trust that everything’s as it should be. As a registered nurse and a perpetual student of yoga, Kate loves finding ways that the two disciplines connect and complement each other. She completed her foundational teacher training with Corina Benner, Victoria Ladd and Julie Pogashevsky at Wake Up Yoga in May 2010, and Yin teacher training with Daniel Shankin at Jai! in May 2011, both in Philadelphia.

Returning Home Farm

Returning Home Farm is an extension of Penn Forest Natural Burial Park that provides model projects in sustainability. Penn Forest owns 35 acres of land in the Penn Hills/Verona area, but only about two acres are currently used for green burials. Another ten acres are set aside as a wildlife refuge area. That leaves about 23 acres that can be used for other sustainability projects that benefit the community.

Ongoing projects include:

  • Raising goats for clearing brush in burial areas
  • Raising chickens and ducks for eggs (we share extras with visitors)
  • Beehives
  • Hiking trails
  • Tree/shrub planting for forest restoration
  • A quarter acre native PA meadow restoration project
  • A Hügelkultur garden
  • A sally garden to grow willow for baskets (and maybe coffins)

Planned & hopeful future projects include:

  • Expanded wellness classes and activities for every body
  • A hoop greenhouse for raising tea
  • A berry garden
  • A mushroom walk trail
  • An artist residency
  • A center for events, classes and trainings central to life and death

We are always open to additional sustainability projects. If you’d like to bring your project to RHF, please tell us about your idea.