This is part of WTOP’s continuing coverage of people making a difference from our community authored by Stephanie Gaines-Bryant. Read more of that coverage.
It’s a purr-fect combination of fun and fitness with furry friends — it’s kitten yoga.
Yoga is a practice that helps strengthen one’s mind, body and spirit, but when you add kittens to the practice, it can enhance any yoga class. At least that’s according to Samantha Miller, director of communications at the Humane Rescue Alliance in D.C.
“Kittens offer a whole new level of calming fun and entertainment to the classes, and it can also make you feel more positive about yourself and help ward off stress,” Miller said.
She said the alliance’s classes encourage dialogue within the community and among students in classes.
“They offer a natural opportunity for students to interact with one another,” Miller said.
Miller said the classes give them exposure to potential adopters and it gives the young animals opportunities for socialization and mental stimulation. The kittens from the sessions are all available for adoption through the animal rescue group.
For over 150 years, the Humane Rescue Alliance has been helping to support families, protect animals and create a world where all animals can thrive, Miller said.
Miller said the human-animal bond has been especially important over the last few years with the pandemic as people dealt with social isolation. Miller, who is a pet owner, said having a pet to provide that social interaction has been beneficial to the mental health of many people, including herself.
Tickets to kitten yoga cost $35. Half of the proceeds will go toward services the alliance offers such as pet adoptions, animal control services and pet pantries throughout the city for people struggling economically to feed their pets.
The Humane Rescue Alliance is offering a Kitten Yoga Class at Yoga Heights in Takoma Park, Maryland, on Saturday, Jan. 29 from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.
To find out more about the Humane Rescue Alliance and Kitten Yoga, visit its website.