By: Jocelyn Schwalm
A yoga teacher from Ottawa is changing the face of the traditional yoga studio. Ashley Kolklj has put together yoga workshops that consist of practicing yoga in different breweries around Ontario, and finishing the class with an ice cold pint.
The founder, Kolklj, states that life is all about balance and much too often we place all our eggs in one basket, and as a result our minds and bodies rebel. With the clever title of Yoga On Tap, this type of yoga is sure to elevate the mind and body with a brew or two. The idea was born as a means of trying to create a balance between keeping up her social life and trying to maintain her mental and physical health through yoga practice.
Since the idea has taken off the Yoga on Tap workshops have expanded throughout Ontario to include more and more diverse breweries. Amsterdam Brewhouse, Gananoque Brewing Company and Manantler Craft Brewing are just a few of the breweries that have chosen to participate in this up and coming fad. Kolklj offers all class types, from low-level to high-level vinyasas, and an alternative class called “Bend and Brunch,” which includes a delicious, vegan morning meal to accompany your beer of choice.
On the website, Kolklj stresses that the experience is less about getting drunk and more about being mindful throughout the experience. The website outlines the eight steps to mindful beer drinking: breathe, observe, touch, smell, taste, repeat, finally, and most importantly be grateful. Not your average way to consume a pint at the bar.
The company even offers a solution for young people who claim they are too broke to afford the classes. There is a volunteer program where time is exchanged for the opportunity to participate in one workshop a week. The volunteers are expected to work from 2.5-4 hours a week and are rewarded with 1 class. However, the classes themselves are not that expensive to begin with – 20 dollars will get you one pint of your choice and the chance to practice yoga in a cool but obscure location. So if you don’t mind the smell of hops while doing a sun salutation, this yoga class is for you!