And isn’t yoga supposed to be about focus and control, the exact things you’ll lose after downing a few of pints?
Well, if it started out as a marketing ploy to grab the headlines, it certainly worked, as you’ll find no shortage of Beer Yoga stories on the internet. But that doesn’t necessarily mean the workout itself isn’t legit.
To get to the bottom of it, I enrolled in a private Beer Yoga class at Trium Fitness and here’s what I found out.
1. It chills you out
I’m a total yoga noob. I can’t touch my toes, have terrible core strength and thought downward dog was a sex position. So I was more than a little self-conscious at the start of the session. But all that anxiety melted away… after my fourth sip of beer:
You see, we’re allowed to have a sip of the amber nectar as a reward after pulling off certain moves, so you’ll be nice and buzzed – just slightly – during the session. “Some go to yoga classes feeling stressed. At beer yoga, by taking a sip or two, it helps them be more calm and relaxed,” says Dawn Sim, co-founder of Trium Fitness. No more than one bottle is used per session, so don’t expect to leave the session drunk!
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2. The beer bottle is a yoga prop
While most yoga sessions require nothing more than a yoga mat, some require special props like blocks, straps, wheels and bolsters. Each serves a different purpose; the yoga block, for example, is often used as an extension of the hands, making it easier to pull off certain moves if you’re not flexible enough.
The beer bottle that’s used in a Beer Yoga session isn’t just for show – it’s a bona fide yoga prop. Sometimes, it’s used like a yoga block, helping you to pull off moves like the standing forward fold. There’s also the general challenge of not spilling any beer as you go from one pose to the next, which is trickier than it sounds. “By practising our yoga moves with an open bottle that contains liquid and trying not to spill it, it acts as a prop when balancing,” says Dawn.
3. It’s tougher than you think
The real test of whether a workout is legit or not is if it works up a sweat – and, boy, I was dripping by the end of the session (not in beer, mind you)! Since the base of a beer bottle has a much lower surface area than that of a yoga block, it was a challenge trying to keep balance when doing moves like the triangle pose:
4. It’s super fun
I’ve taken part in my fair share of group workout sessions, from aerobics to spin to HIIT, and I don’t remember laughing and smiling as much as I did during the Yoga Beer session. Drinking beer definitely helps to loosen you up, but there’s something about the absurdity of holding a bottle of beer while pulling off yoga moves that made the vibe light-hearted and relaxed. I had a permanent smile plastered on my face while sweat was trickling down my cheeks throughout. Workouts aren’t meant to be this fun, right?