Downward dog, puppy pose, eagle pose, cow pose, cat pose – it seems like all yoga asanas (postures) were inspired by animal movements. No wonder they were, animals certainly can do yoga better than people.
Yoga has become increasingly popular, and lately, you could find even classes which include practicing with dogs or cats.
If you are a cat owner who does yoga regularly or has been thinking about starting with yoga, maybe you would like to consider letting your feline friend join you.
Why you ask? Practicing yoga with your kitty can be beneficial for both of you, and it will allow for some more bonding time.
Unfold your yoga mat and let the kneading begin
When you roll out your yoga mat, after a few seconds you will notice that your cat will take its place on the mat and start kneading. Cats usually knead to show comfort and pleasure. (1) At the beginning of your yoga practice while you focus on your breath, you could pay attention to your furry friend’s purring and breathing sounds as well. This will bring focus to you, and comfort to your kitty.
Moreover, try getting one yoga mat only for your furry friend. It will stay off yours and have its own space for kneading and practicing.
I want your attention
If the little ball of fur is pawing, nudging, lying next to you on the mat or on top of you, it is seeking your attention. (2) Contrary to popular beliefs, cats don’t enjoy spending a lot of time alone. They like to spend time with their owners and enjoy the attention they receive.
During the warm-up section of your yoga practice, if you are seated and you are warming up your neck and shoulders, invite your kitty to sit in your lap. The little one will be thrilled to be close to you, it will get the attention it is seeking, and you will warm up your joints and your heart.
It is not unusual for cats to meow or interrupt you during your yoga practice. One solution is to get their favorite toy and let them entertain themselves. Another solution is to choose a time for practice when the ball of fur is sleeping.
Nevertheless, if your cat continues to seek your attention, let it join you and feel the atmosphere during your practice lighten up and become more joyful.
That pose looks interesting, let me try it
Kitties are curious little beings and love observing their human friends. Once they see you moving from one pose to another, it is likely they will start following you and join you on the mat. Don’t be surprised if you notice your furry friend passing under you while you are in downward dog, or climbing on top of you while you rest in savasana.
The different yoga postures will stimulate your cat’s curiosity and senses, while also keeping it entertained.
Furthermore, you could try including your feline friend while doing certain poses, like Warrior I. Hold your kitty in your hands and lift it up as you move into the posture. The little ball of love will feel like The Lion King.
Natural born yogis
Cats have great flexibility in their joints, which contributes to the length of the average cat’s lifespan, but also this gives them the possibility to stretch and twist into all kinds of poses. In fact, maybe your furry friend could teach you a pose or two. If you try to mimic some of their movements, they may get even more interested in joining you for regular practice.
Stretching and holding poses is part of your cat’s daily routine, but doing it together with you will definitely make their flexibility time more enjoyable.
Deepen your connection
Moving, breathing, and spending time together will certainly improve the connection with your furry friend. It will bring you closer, and it will add a variety to the activities you do together. The communication with your feline friend will be different and you will start understanding each other on a different level.
Embrace the time you have to spend together and take a break from your habitual, daily routine. In relation, your cat will certainly add some spice to your yoga routine and bring some love, warmth, and fun.
Your kitty will be over the moon for spending time with you, and your yoga practice will get a different dimension. Your relationship and your bond with your cat will transform.