10 Yoga Classes That Are Extra AF
Because every downward dog can be improved by an actual dog.
Every time we think the wellness world couldn’t get any more extra we’re proved very, very wrong. Goat yoga, anyone?
So, we made it our mission to try out the most extra types of yoga to see if they’re fab or a fad.
Check out this amazing water yoga class to start off!
1. Dog Yoga
Perfect for dog owners, Dogamahny’s “doga” is (of course) dog yoga. If you don’t have a dog, don’t worry - you can still come along for the fun of being licked in the face by other people’s pets.
The dogs are allowed to do their own thing during the class (or, if they’re keen to join in, you can use them as a prop!) but will pick up on your vibes and become chilled af.
The crazy thing is, it actually seemed to work. The dogs were running around like crazy when we arrived, sniffing each other’s butts and pissing on table legs (delightful). But by the end of the class they were totally zonked out. Or maybe they were zen, we couldn’t tell.
Verdict: Maybe not the hardest workout (as we kept getting distracted by the cuteness) but any excuse for puppy cuddles is good in our book!
2. Goat Yoga
We’re not kidding around - goat yoga is an actual thing. Run by Diana Malone, the yoga classes take place in a field with goats roaming free around you. The idea is that it combines the health benefits of yoga with all the happiness of a petting zoo. So when we got an invite to a class, we were like…
In reality, the goats were pretty distracting. We got the giggles - as a goat marched onto someone’s mat and knocked them over mid-pose - and took lots of goat-selfie breaks. But, given that playing with the goats is proven to release mood-boosting hormones, we figured it was all part of the fun!
Verdict: Loads of fun and Instagram gold - especially if you visit early in the season when the cute baby goats are still teeny tiny and might jump on you! Oh, but don’t bring your best leggings - someone got pooped on during our class!
3. Disco Yoga
D.I.S.C...YOGA! Get ready to nama-stay on the dance floor and Shake Your Groove thing all night: it’s Disco Yoga.
If you’re bored of bending and stretching like a regular yogi, glitter up (glitter stations will be ready for you on arrival) and start dancing out your downward dog to the DJ’s expertly curated playlist jam packed with classic disco tunes.
We were So Excited to head to Boogie Wonderland that we didn’t spare a thought about being self-conscious and even worked up a bit of a sweat. When the class was over (boo!) we cooled off with a refreshing disco-themed cocktail (yay!) served in glitter balls.
Verdict: The most fun we’ve had at a yoga class, probably ever.
4. Aerial Yoga
If you want to up your game in the Instagram stakes - and get a rock hard core while you’re at it - aerial yoga is the one for you.
Supporting your bodyweight with a Yoga Hammock makes you almost weightless so you can try out some crazy positions that are just way too hard in a regular yoga class. Aerial fitness school Flying Fantastic runs challenging classes that will get you upside down and into cool poses in no time.
Dangling in our hammocks and getting into some impressive-looking postures made us feel incredible...if not a little dizzy now and again when the hammock spun out of control. Oops.
It’s so much fun that you might not notice all that hanging around is actually a really intense workout. That is, until your core takes its revenge the day after. And the day after that. And maybe the next day too. Ouch!
Verdict: A brilliantly fun (but really hard!) workout.
Toe-ga, recommended by We Run, is a set of exercises designed specially for your toes (and feet). Running coach Ben Le Vesconte will get you to stand on a special plate to evaluate if you have any issues with the way you spread weight across your feet and then teach you some special exercises to fix them.
It might sound silly but all those fabulous shoes you’ve been wearing can lead to weakened feet.
The Toe-ga exercises we tried included things like lifting one toe up at a time (without the others raising up) and bending back your big toe with the others staying glued to the floor. Weirdly, what sounds like simple exercises were actually much harder we expected which, Ben told us, meant our feet weren’t working in the way they should be.
Verdict: Particularly good for runners or those trying to recondition their feet to cure severe foot or back pain but also useful for generally happy tootsies.
6. Robot Yoga
Why bother with yoga tutorials on YouTube when you can BUY YOUR OWN ROBOT to be your own personal yoga companion?! UBTECH Robotics has designed a robot called Alpha 1 that can perform yoga with you. Download your yoga routine on the app, press play and join in as he goes through the moves. As well as yoga, he also sings, dances and can do one-armed push-ups and Kung Fu. So cool.
Verdict: Not sure we’d buy a robot just to do yoga with us but love the idea of having a yoga buddy we can take anywhere. He wobbled a little bit at times but, depressingly, his Wheel pose was still better than ours.
ChromaYoga describes itself as “an immersive, multi-sensory yoga experience”. It’s based on scientific research that shows different light frequencies and sounds have different effects on our bodies.
All that time you’re spending on your phone, computer and in front of the TV? It’s exposing you to blue light which can lead to insomnia and anxiety amongst other things.
ChromaYoga has been designed to fix this imbalance with “positive” colours of light, each of which has a different healing property. We loved how we were bathed in different coloured lights which gradually changed throughout the class.
Verdict: It’s a challenging class and if you haven’t done yoga before, it might be tough to keep up at first. We’re not sure if it was from the workout itself or the special lighting but we did feel rejuvenated and ready for anything afterwards.
8. SUP Yoga
Who needs a yoga mat when you have a paddleboard?! Yogis ready for a new challenge should hit the water with SUP (Stand Up Paddleboard) Yoga by Active360.
Expect to wobble around a bit as the water is (obviously) moving underneath you but having to adjust to these slight movements is actually great for your core. You’ll get to grips with the basics of keeping the board stable in no time.
It’s pretty unlikely you’ll actually fall in - one girl in our class managed to do a headstand without disaster. Although some were secretly hoping she might plunge headfirst into the canal for showing off!
Verdict: We’d had nightmares about falling into the canal and getting covered in pond scum but actually needn’t have worried. Would definitely try it again, especially on a sunny day!
9. Beer Yoga
When Nirvana Brewery - the UK’s first alcohol-free craft brewery - invited us to try out their beer yoga classes, we figured it sounded like a great idea.
We had a bottle of beer in front of us throughout the class - the torture was that we couldn’t drink it until the end.
Weirdly, having our beer in front of us as our “drishti” (or focal point) made it easier to concentrate on our yoga, rather than dreaming about what we were going to eat for dinner after class. We also used the beer bottles as weights during the class to add some intensity to our workout. They actually start to feel pretty heavy after a while.
Obviously, the best bit was being able to drink the beer after class. We were really good at focusing on that!
Verdict: An evening of great tasting beer without a hangover the next day? Yes please!
10. Scuba Yoga
After all that, if you thought yoga couldn’t get any more extra, think again. Aquanauts in Grenada runs “scuba yoga” courses. We reckon combining yoga with scuba diving will definitely take your practice to the next level... About 18 metres deep to be precise!
Words by Melissa Hobson