Yoga has been evolving for more than 5,000 years. It’s origins have been traced to India, with the oldest written records dating more than 3,000 years old. Artifacts have been found from this period also where the people of India have interacted with animals. This significance crossed over into yoga with many postures named after animals.
Animals were noted for their abilities and accomplishments and to imitate these qualities was considered a sign of spiritual attainment. A few of these poses are Downward Dog, Rooster Pose and Tortoise Pose. Recently, Yoga has evolved to include animals.
Today more than 30 million people practice Yoga on a regular basis and people’s attitudes toward health and spirituality are changing. Doga (pronounced DOE-guh) developed from observing animals. Ashley Storm, a yoga instructor and co-owner of Hot Yoga, says, “They stretch naturally, like we do in our yoga poses. It just feels good to them. It feels good to us, too.”
Suzi Teitelman a Doga teacher and the Director of Yoga for Crunch Fitness NYC explains, “In the Doga poses, we will help our dogs go further in the stretches, and they will help us go deeper too. The poses are based on Hatha postures, and the dogs and humans stretch, breathe, bond and relax in sync. The weight of their body, their scent and their love all work together and that makes doga a complete spiritual experience. Chanting, massage and accupressure are a large part of doga as well as reflexology on all the paws, and on our pads too…Doga is the most amazing bonding experience you will ever have with your pet.”
Do you do Doga? What is your experience with it? If you don’t do it, would you try it? Let us know!