You’ve heard of hot yoga and bunny yoga. Maybe you’ve even heard of baby goat yoga.
One Madison family is starting a hot new Midwestern yoga trend, Yoga in the Barn.
The event itself is held on the grounds of Emily’s Ten Oaks Ranch, a popular wedding recital destination for its bucolic beauty and hospitality of the Wood Family. Yoga in the Barn became a reality after accomplished yoga instructor Liza Hahn saw an opportunity for people to immerse themselves in yoga in a refreshing environment.
“I feel there’s a long story and history to this property but I have always felt that the property is a blessing for us to have to be more of a community and it should help people,” Megan Wood, the property owner said.
The property certainly seemed blessed as I passed the threshold into the barn and was greeted by a kind company whose warmth was akin more to that of a congregation than a casual weekly yoga group. I couldn’t help but appreciate the quaint, spacious interior of the barn illuminated by a web of string lights. A pleasant surprise came by way of a treat table, where a homemade version of basil lemonade or blackberry and strawberry tea were available for the taking.
On to the actual yoga. Our first pose was a simple criss-cross applesauce. While Hahn guided our eyes closed, I began to fully appreciate the comforting ambiance gliding in on the breeze through the doors and windows of the barn. The wandering bleats of goats, an occasional neigh from a horse, all accented by the soft chirp of crickets.
Hahn masterfully led us through each distinct pose all the while placing a firm emphasis on self-empowerment and individuality, characteristics she herself refined through her healing experiences with yoga. The poses she chose centered on finding balance and strength on the physical and mental level, none of which were too difficult to pick up on or couldn’t be corrected with a quick glance to the left or right.
The session seemed to come to a close too soon as a dry towel infused with lavender essence was slowly draped over each of our tranquil faces lying in savasana, or corpse pose.
Hahn believes that intimidation is what keeps individuals from approaching yoga.
“Yoga is not a competition. It’s a yoga practice for a reason. There’s no perfection and everyone’s different. Find what you like and try it out,” Hahn said.
Any yogis attending Wood’s event are more than welcome to acquaint themselves with their large array of animals, including buffalo, kangaroos, ducks, chickens, goats and horses.
“If you’re intimidated, you get to pet a kangaroo,” Wood said.
The Yoga in the Barn event will be hosted by Emily’s Ten Oaks Ranch every Wednesday from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. until Sept. 19.
Can’t make it? The hosts are hopeful that this will become an annual tradition with a possible feature of baby goats during next year’s classes!
The event is free of charge with a suggested donation of $10, every dollar going toward a different non-profit organization in Dane County each session.
To find out more about Emily’s Ten Oaks Ranch, visit their website at www.emilystenoaksranch.com.