Sep 6, 2018
It all began with one goat, Snowflake, who changed everything for Mullenax Ranch.
The goat was such a monumental piece in the Ranch, that she acted as ring bearer at owner Alex Mullenax's wedding.
It wasn't until the Nigerian Dwarf Goat made her way into the small family owned ranch that the ball really got rolling for California Goat Yoga.
Mullenax Ranch of Tehachapi has traveled throughout the state of California delivering a fun and unique experience for the new popular activity.
Goat Yoga has become quite popular over the past year or so, with farms and programs popping up across the country, but what makes California Goat Yoga unique is combining the beginner-level yoga classes with things like wine or even grilled cheese.
While the main point of the California Goat Yoga events is for people to have a "once in a lifetime" experience, the activity is actually something that benefits the goats as well.
Alex Mullenax, who runs Mullenax Ranch with her husband said that the positive experiences allow for the goats to learn that they can trust people.
"Doing goat yoga does help the goats as well," Mullenax said. "We do raise them with their mothers and don't pull them when they're young, so this is a program that also helps us socialize our goats and make them friendly and ready for their next home."
Mullenax said that the first priority is always the goats, whether it be their welfare, happiness or health, the goats are what come first.
For many people, yoga can often be seen as a more serious activity. Those who are involved in the hobby put a lot of their mind and body into the tasks.
Greg Witcher, who has ventured into the yoga world before said that bringing goats into the mix made it possible for him to "kid" around a bit more"
"Introducing the goats made me feel more comfortable," Witcher said. "When you go to yoga class, there's usually people there that do it all the time and its a big part of their life, for me, it's more of a recreational thing, so bringing in the goats, I felt a lot more comfortable."
Stuart Preston, who attended the Tehachapi Goat Yoga session at Triassic Vineyards with a group of friends including Witcher agreed that the activity made him feel more relaxed.
Preston said that as a newcomer to the yoga scene, being around the baby goats made it a more relaxed atmosphere.
As a local ranch, Mullenax has had many of their Goat Yoga events in the city of Tehachapi. For some of the attendees, like Preston, goat yoga isn't the first thing that comes to his mind when he thinks of Tehachapi, but as a rural location, it's a perfect way to bring people together.
“I think doing goat yoga, doing events like this really bring people together," Preston said. "Doing goat yoga or different things brings people together and you get to laugh and drink some wine and have some fun.”
Preston said that since the ranch and events are held locally, it gives a more personal feel.
"It just brings people closer together, everyone has a little wine you get to be more comfortable with people in your community so its nice," Preston said.
All in all, what makes these events so special is the happiness and joy that people are filled with for the near hour they spend with the goats.
Mullenax said that it's seeing hhow she's able to share her love of goats with others and that every person can be a "goat person" when they attend an event.
California Goat Yoga continues to add more events to their calendar in cities across the state including Paso Robles, Tin City and even Bakersfield this weekend.
Their next open event will be held on Sunday September 9, 2018 at Links at Riverlakes Ranch Golf Course in Bakersfield.
Two sessions will run on Sunday, the first running from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. and immediately following, another session will run from 9:45 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.
If you would like to sign up for a session you can visit CaliforniaGoatYoga.com.