Sometimes when people drink they can end up in some pretty flexible positions (above photo). But some beer-lovering health enthusiasts have paired fermented hops with yoga to come up with a new take on the practice. Say hello to Beer Yoga!
BierYoga, or BeerYoga, became a trend among Berlin’s beer-loving hipsters. Though it may seem a bit of a gag, the founder of the class wants people to know that the new practice is no laughing matter. “BeerYoga is fun but it’s no joke,” wrote founder Jhula on the company website, “We take the philosophies of yoga and pair it with the pleasure of beer-drinking to reach your highest level of consciousness.”
Jhula got the idea after seeing it at the Burning Man festival. Jhula then brought the idea home with her. Since she brought it back to Berlin, it has grown in popularity. BierYoga has gone international and classes are now being held in Sydney, Australia.
Most people don’t associate beer drinking and the peak of physical fitness. However, beer does have several health benefits. Like wine, beer is known to lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. Beer also helps your creativity, which could be particularly good for a creative Beer Yoga class.
You may want to make sure that your balance is pretty good before attending one of these classes. Some of the classes include balancing a beer bottle on your head. This may lead to a pretty embarrassing and potentially dangerous situation if the bottle smashes on the floor.
In place of sun salutations, the class offers beer salutations. The Natarajasana or “Lord of the Dance” pose can be altered so that you can (not so easily) take a deep sip of your beer as you sink into the pose.
There are tons of beer and yoga classes popping up over the US. One such company, Beer Yoga LLC, was started by Brooke Larson. Larson initially thought the idea was a joke, but soon realized it was a potentially lucrative business.
“I started Beer Yoga as a joke. I took silly photos of me doing yoga poses with a beer in my hand and posted them to social media,” Larson said in an interview. “Before long, breweries started sending me beers to post on my Instagram page when it started growing to over 10,000 followers. Once I reached 20,000 followers, I got yoga certified and decided to open Beer Yoga, LLC and teach yoga classes at breweries and bars. “
South Carolina-based yogi Beth Cosi teaches her Bendy Brewski Yoga class at Holy City Brewing and she says that having the class there invites a new demographic to the practice. “Generally, it’s people who have no interest in going to a studio. Or they want to try yoga bit are too shy to go to a studio,” she said.
Mikki Trowbridge from Oregon decided to try out a class at a local brewery and thought that only 15 people would show up. She ended up having 100 people show up for the class.
Breweries and craft beers are typically a hobby taken up by men, and women tend to be the majority of the participants in yoga classes. This new fusion allows women to get into the world of drinking beer, and men more interested in yoga.
“The majority of our yogis are usually girls and the majority of people in the brewery are men so it’s kind of helped crossed that chasm of getting girls into craft beer,” said Chris Gove president of the SaltWater Brewery in Delray Beach.
If you see yourself as more of a cannabis-connoisseur, you may want to try 4:20 Remedy Yoga in Los Angeles. It is the preferred studio for medical-marijuana patients. The students are encouraged to smoke before attending the class. And, no, they don’t actually get to smoke within the studio.