Residents at Otterbein Senior Life in Lebanon, OH, recently participated in a yoga class. Simple enough, right?
Except for one big twist. This class featured some furry companions — seven pygmy goats.
The animals, each named after a character from Harry Potter, were part of a yoga class offered by Good Green Earth Farm of Cincinnati.
Twenty residents took part in each of two sessions. The visit was as restorative as it was enjoyable for the residents, staff members said.
“It was very therapeutic. The goats were making people relax,” said Otterbein Senior Life Program Director Ronda Hammermeister.
“There were so many moments of smiles and laughter. Everyone thought they were so funny.”
The goats interacted in different ways with the residents throughout the session, with one goat even standing on a resident’s back during a certain yoga pose. Afterward, the participants, which included skilled nursing residents, were able to hold and pet the animals.
Otterbein is no stranger to hosting fun, outside-of-the-box events. In July, it hosted a silent disco party. Hammermeister noted she is constantly looking for ways to enrich her community with new forms of engagement. This will include an “Otterbein Olympics” next month, which will bring residents of eight other communities together in Lebanon to compete in a variety of different activities.
In the meantime, Otterbein residents are still enjoying the memories from their experience with the goats.
They may not have to wait too long before doing it again.
“Everyone’s health and well-being was improved with this Health & Wellness class,” said Otterbein Director of Marketing Anna Gallagher.
“We will definitely be having them baaaaack.”