The natural beauty of the vineyards that dot the Santa Ynez Valley is providing the backdrop for a new trend: yoga among the vines.
Wineries including Kalyra, Brander, Roblar and Firestone, have signed up to host yoga classes taught by veteran instructor Cori Lassahn. Following their session, participants enjoy wine from grapes grown on the property, and at some locations, a spa lunch or a chocolate pairing as well.
"While yoga and wine might not be two things you’d naturally pair up, here in the Santa Ynez Valley, it’s a logical step," said Lassahn. "Fifteen million Americans are practicing yoga across America, so there’s no doubt that yoga has caught on as a relaxing and highly beneficial form of exercise. Now imagine feeling the sun’s warmth on your open palms as your body sinks into the earth and rows of grapevines come into focus."
Her Vineyard Yoga SYV classes combine all of that, Lassahn said, and you don't have to be an experienced practitioner to take part: "Yoga newcomers are definitely welcome. Yoga is a great way to relieve stress in a healthy way."
Lassahn has been teaching yoga in the Valley since she and her husband moved here 10 years ago. The mother of two also has a successful event planning company. Yoga, however, is her passion, and she's conducted twice-weekly classes at the YMCA in Santa Ynez for a decade.
Lassahn expects more wineries to sign up to host classes in the near future.
"There are vineyard yoga classes in Oregon, but I believe we're the first anywhere in California," she said.
For more information and class schedule, go to: vineyardyogasyv.com.