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Student Activities Board Hosts Goat Yoga Event

The University welcomed NY Goat Yoga from Gilbertsville Farmhouse on Wednesday, Sept. 21. The event attracted onlookers from around Monmouth’s campus to Shadow Lawn.

Although advertised to all community members, only the first 50 people who signed up were able to participate in the session.

NY Goat Yoga hosted two classes, each lasting 15 minutes. While students stretched and practiced some of the exercises, the baby goats roamed freely in the enclosed space. Students had the opportunity to pet, take pictures, and feed the goats while the program took place.

One of the instructors, Vanessa Pellegrino, explained the premise behind this take on yoga. “Goat yoga is a blend of animal therapy and yoga sequencing.” The instructors bring the goats from their goat farm where they are raised in South New Berlin, New York. In addition to visiting places like Monmouth, they also offer classes directly on their farm.

The instructor described how she got started in this line of work, first exposed via a Facebook post. “I saw a Facebook advertisement post for a goat yoga instructor, and once I visited the farm, I fell in love.”

Throughout the duration of the event, the organizers would guide the goats with treats to jump on students while they were in a variety of different yoga positions.

“The goats teach us to be present, have fun, and go with the flow…They also help relieve stress by making people smile,” said Pellegrino. “They enable us to tune into the fun side of ourselves.”

The Outlook likewise interviewed various students that were present for yoga with the goats. One freshman undergraduate student responded, “The experience was so much fun, especially with the goats climbing on your back.”

The student continued, “It felt heavy at first to have them on top of you, but then you realize that they are just goats. It even tickled my back a little bit!”

A different undergraduate student felt similarly to that of the previous, saying, “Having the goats on my back didn’t hurt at all. At first there was some pressure, but it was totally fine, definitely more fun than anything else.”

The student also remarked at how important she feels events like these are. “I feel like this helped relieve some of my stress, and it gives students the opportunity to get out of their dorms and get some fresh air.”

Students also commented about how they felt the activity impacted their levels of stress. “This has definitely had a positive impact on our mental health, and we would do this every day.”

Pellegrino agreed with the students, saying, “Goat yoga is super interactive and fun, which allows students to de-stress by combining the positive effects of animal therapy and yoga poses.” After the event, students left energized and ready to tackle the rest of their day.

There was a general consensus among the students present that the University should continue to promote events like these in the future.