The Renegade Rip

Innerbody Works Yoga hosts Cat Yoga in downtown Bakersfield

One+of+the+kittens+up+for+adoption+looks+at+a+yoga+student.
One of the kittens up for adoption looks at a yoga student.

One of the kittens up for adoption looks at a yoga student.

Cassidy Eisen

Cassidy Eisen

One of the kittens up for adoption looks at a yoga student.

Cassidy Eisen, Reporter

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Innerbody Works Yoga Studio collaborated with MEOW Co. to bring an evening of Cat Yoga to downtown Bakersfield on Friday, Sept.7.

Nearly 40 yoga students spent an hour performing an array of yoga poses of all levels, accompanied by eight cats pawing around. Though a few were licensed therapy cats, most kittens were up for adoption through MEOW Co.

Before the class, Daniel Mariano, Directors of Operations of MEOW Co., explained how the nonprofit organization rescues cats from “high-kill risk” shelters to give them a second chance at life and to find a forever home.

Cassidy Eisen
Cats are seen interacting with attendees during yoga.

“Most agencies rescue 70-80 cats a year, and our rescue numbers are 1000 plus, and our adoption numbers are about 936, so that margin is pretty high.” according to Mariano. “We definitely hustle, we are taking over California one cat at a time.”

Throughout the session, the cats were seen interacting with the attendees, running through their legs and purring at their feet; it turned into a cuddle party.

Though some guests were regulars at Innerbody Works, this was many attendees’ first time at the studio. Newcomer Ryplee Sadler expressed her excitement over adopting a kitten.

“It’s my first time doing yoga here, and I’m totally coming back, [the instructor] was really nice,” said Sadler. “My husband and I didn’t expect to adopt but now we are bringing home Nemo, and we are so happy about it.”

Guests do their final stretches while observing the cats play.

Tara Delis, instructor and owner of Innerbody Works Yoga Studio, integrated both beginning and intermediate level poses, including the chaturanga dandasana, shavasana, trikonasana, bālāsana, and virabhadrasana to name a few.

‘We like bringing in foundations like these because it’s community-oriented, not to mention how fun it is to have little kitties running around,” said Delis. “Most people in class today have never been here or have never done yoga, so it’s cool that it brought a crowd of people with different interests.”

After class, guests were able to try the complimentary cocktails, or “MEOWmosas”, as well as some hors-d’oeuvres. They were also encouraged to mingle with other guests and play with the cats in need of a family.

Cassidy Eisen
Owner Tara Delis instructs the class to perform to the downward facing dog pose.

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Innerbody Works Yoga hosts Cat Yoga in downtown Bakersfield