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Each day, the number of people who choose to excersie with their dogs grows. Going for a jog or for a walk with our 4-pawed friends is great for our physical health, it motivates us, and improves our mood, among other things.
With that in mind, it´s no surprise that activities like canicross (cross-country running with dogs) or flyball are rising in popularity. Still, these two sports aren´t the only ones: less well known activities like doga are attracting new enthusiasts everyday.
This activity, which originated in the US, is relatively recent development. It´s name is a portmanteau, originating from the fusion of ¨yoga¨ and ¨dog¨. Obviously enough, doga is simply the practice of doing yoga with your dog.
We live stressful, demanding lives, always rushing from one place to the next, and we tend to forget that our pets share these lives with us. That is to say, our pets deal with the hustle & bustle, the frenetic rhythm of our lifestyles too. This way of life, in fact, can contribute to stages of considerable stress and/or anxiety that threaten our health. For this reason, in the past few years, centers that offer doga sessions have been particularly successful.
Doga combines physical exercise with relaxation through controlled breathing, helping to aleviate tensions and stress. It´s benefits are shared in pairs, precisely because doga was built around this bilateral interaction between dogs and humans.
These exercises can be done with any kind of canine. However, doga sessions should be adapted to the physical characteristics of the dog (e.g. size and weight). In general, doga incorporates the positions and maneuveurs of a traditional yoga session, although some are modified to increase interaction between dog and owner.
According to experts, doga is beneficial for a dog´s physical health since it improves cardiovascular circulation, increases flexibility, and tones muscles. It also provides important emotional and psychological benefits. For example, it helps dogs to relax and concentrate, and it even results in synchronized breathing between the dog-owner pairs, which fortifies the bond between them. In this sense, doga can help develop an intimate connection between dogs and their humans and also serves as the perfect warmup before canine training sessions.
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