There are some pretty weird types of yoga out there. You've probably heard of Bikram and Anusara, but maybe basic yoga classes sound a bit too boring for your tastes. If so, you might consider trying some of the crazier yoga classes out there. Just be forewarned: Some of them don't sound very relaxing. Here's a look at a few of the weird types of yoga classes that really exist:
1. Co-Ed Nude Yoga
When it comes to weird types of yoga that might make you feel uncomfortable, it's hard to top this one. If you're worried about your yoga pants being too see-through, then the classes available at the Bold & Naked Yoga studio in New York definitely aren't for you. The studio offers co-ed completely nude Vinyasa yoga, but emphasizes that the classes aren't meant to be sexual in any way. The FAQ section for the website features crazy questions like "Will I get an erection?" and "Will I have an orgasm?" The answers to these questions are "maybe" and "no," in case you're curious.
This class takes the downward-facing dog pose literally. If you feel like your dog is as just as stressed out as you are and needs a way to unwind, then you might want to see if this crazy partner yoga class is available near you. The Dogadog.com website describes doga as "yoga doggie style." This makes it sound like the perfect form of yoga for those who are disappointed that nude yoga isn't as naughty as it sounds. However, judging from doga videos and photos, it basically looks like you just do simple yoga poses while holding your dog in various positions. You'll definitely get a workout trying to make sure that your poor pooch doesn't flee.
This incredible yoga hybrid class isn't as weird as it is wonderful. It combines yoga with "vogueing," the 80s dance craze that Madonna mentions in her song "Vogue." Upbeat voga classes will have you feeling fabulous while you strike a pose to an amazing playlist of awesome 80's tunes. Voga is the brainchild of Juliet Murrell, an artist who instructs classes in various London locations. One of these is Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club, a space that the voga website describes like this: "It reflects the vibe of the original Harlem halls of the 80s as seen in the documentary 'Paris is Burning.'" If you want to learn more about vogueing, you should definitely check that movie out.
If you're not a fan of hot yoga, perhaps you should consider this chillier hybrid class. "Snowga" combines yoga with snow sports like skiing and snowshoeing. At the Mohawk Mountain ski resort in Connecticut, snowga classes are all about using yoga to improve your performance on your skis or snowboard. You do a few different yoga poses before hitting the slopes. The classes at the Yogachelan studio in Washington State consist of a long snowshoe hike and an outdoor yoga session. If there are no classes available near you, you can create your own form of snowga by doing standing yoga poses before or after a snowshoe hike or cross-country skiing trek.
5. Stiletto Yoga
New York yoga instructor Yamuna Zake believes that yoga is the secret to being able to rock high heels without pain. Yamuna offers special Foot Fitness classes that help women learn to rock their high heels comfortably and confidently by using small half-ball props called Foot Wakers to massage and exercise the feet. On her website, Yamuna writes, "We stretch and work out the rest of the body and yet the feet, are left out of most fitness programs." She believes that women should be able to wear stilettos at every age, and she thinks that her innovative exercises will help them be Carrie Bradshaws forever. If you can't make it to a class, you can purchase Foot Wakers and an instructional DVD on Yamuna's website.
6. Laughter Yoga
You'd be surprised how popular this bizarre form of yoga is. According to Laughteryoga.org, a laughter yoga session "strives to cultivate childlike playfulness." Exercises include clapping while reciting a "HO, HO, HA-HA-HA" chant, speaking gibberish, deep breathing exercises, and playful pantomime exercises. These include "milkshake laughter," which is laughing while you pretend to mix and drink a milkshake. Some classes even include laughter meditation, light physical exercises, and dancing. The idea of a laughter yoga class might make you laugh, but this is a good thing – the Laughteryoga.org website points out that studies have shown that laughter can lower stress hormone levels.
7. SUP Yoga
No, this isn't yoga for cool kids who are too lazy to say, "What's up?" It's a hybrid class that combines yoga and stand up paddle (SUP) surfing. You get to really become one with nature by paddling out onto the water on a paddle board to do poses like the the bow pose, the downward-facing dog, and the camel pose. You get more of a workout because the motion of the water makes you engage your core as you try to stay stable. Poses that are more challenging include the tree pose and the warrior pose. This form of yoga is getting pretty popular, so you might be able to find a class near you.
Some of these weird types of yoga might annoy yoga purists. However, they might appeal to those who think that traditional forms of yoga aren't exciting enough. Do any of these classes sound like fun to you?