NOLA Tribe Yoga offers yoga with kittens and encourages pet adoption
There is a sour old man sitting next to me while I write this. His expression is one of weary disregard for this world and its shenanigans. His green eyes are disillusioned, yet vigilant.
“Kitten yoga,” he thinks to himself, “what a ridiculous thing to do.” Then he looks up at me, his whiskers twitch, I scratch his head, and he turns away to ignore me once again. This is what kittens become, and we love them forever anyway.
For all lovers of felines out there, NOLA Tribe Yoga has partnered with the Louisiana SPCA to bring you Meowmasté: Yoga with kittens. Each Saturday in January, yogis can participate in a vinyasa flow practice while adoptable kittens scamper about on the mats and potentially climb up your warrior II pose.
“The kittens are incredibly social, active and excited,” said McKensie Kirchner, co-founder of NOLA Tribe Yoga. “They make you feel like they are in love with you.”
All of the kittens participating in the yoga class are ready for adoption, meaning spayed/neutered, vaccinated and microchipped courtesy of the Louisiana SPCA. Staff is ready to help start the adoption process after each yoga class, and class admission includes a $20 discount on the standard kitten adoption fee of $90.
There’s no pressure on yogis to adopt any of the kittens, but it is a goal of the series to place kittens in forever homes.
Another intention with the Meowmasté series is to create accessible yoga for everyone. Kirchner said this series is for people of all ages and comfort levels, and the instructors are ready to lead the class by adjusting the difficulty of the poses and flow for children, experienced yogis, and everyone in between.
“Everyone has their phones out and are posting on Instagram. It’s a really social class,” says Kirchner. “We encourage people not to take themselves too seriously. In all of the classes that we do, by having them in the environments that we choose, it really helps people to take that pressure off of the expectation of a studio class that they put on themselves for yoga. It’s fun to watch people come out of their box and engage in a class that they might not otherwise be able to.”
The series is incredibly popular — Jan. 12 is already sold out. As of writing this, however, there are still passes available for Saturday, Jan. 19 and Saturday, Jan. 26. Each class is from 10 to 11 a.m., with registration beginning at 9:45 a.m. The passes are $20 and must be purchased in advance online. No walk-ins will be accommodated.
The classes are held indoors in a recreation room filled with natural light at the Louisiana SPCA, located on the Westbank at 1700 Mardi Gras Blvd. People are encouraged to bring their own yoga mats or may rent a mat for $3.
Kirchner says that as the kitten series continues to grow in popularity, she looks forward to planning another iteration with the Louisiana SPCA in the near future. And if you’ve not yet heard of baby goat yoga, they do that too. Check out the NOLA Tribe Yoga website for announcements about their returning series in the spring with goats.