‘What can we do with yoga and coffee?’

The Boss’s question caught me off guard. I had never heard about yoga and coffee. At first thought, yoga seemed far removed from coffee. What would bring both things together? I wondered.

‘I’d have to check and get back to you.’ I replied as I searched for yoga and coffee on Google on my phone. At first glance, I didn’t see anything interesting. 

As a once-in-a-while-coffee-drinker and yoga teacher, my eyes first caught articles that didn’t support yoga and coffee. 

I knew there had to be yoga and coffee somewhere. And if there wasn’t, I was going to create one. 

Yoga and Coffee

Soon I realized Yoga and Coffee workshopping is not new. Some coffee lovers have a routine of coffee and yoga. While some yogis think there is no way to have coffee and get the benefits of yoga.

The Bad News – Why Some Yogis Avoid Coffee

There are various reasons why some yoga teachers and practitioners avoid coffee with yoga. Some of those reasons are  –

  • Coffee is highly acidifying, which can harm the body’s pH balance. Since many people focus on alkaline and antioxidant-rich diets for health reasons, avoiding acidic foods like coffee is common.
  • Secondly, coffee is a diuretic, meaning it can dehydrate the body. This is particularly concerning during physical activities like yoga, where hydration is crucial. Additionally, increased sweating caused by coffee consumption can lead to a loss of essential vitamins and minerals.
  • Thirdly, coffee can affect flexibility, which is important for yogis practicing physical postures (asana) Many yogis practice fasting and detoxification, and coffee consumption can interfere with these practices.
  • Poor-quality varieties of coffee can overload the liver with chemicals, impacting overall health.
  • As a stimulant, coffee can interfere with the inner calmness needed for meditation. It can also disrupt sleep patterns, leading to irritability and aggressiveness, counterproductive to a yogic lifestyle focused on peace and balance.

The Good News – Yoga and Coffee is a Thing

yoga and coffee

Turns out coffee and yoga is a thing. On this thread, some people say they drink coffee and practice yoga (asana) as a ritual. Some even recommend they go hand in hand. One yoga teacher said she drinks coffee 20 minutes before class, which helps raise her energy for the class. I am yet to experiment with this.

Some of the benefits of a yoga practice after a cup of coffee are –

  • Enhanced Alertness and Focus: Caffeine acts as a stimulant that can increase alertness and sharpen focus. This heightened mental clarity can help you stay more present during your yoga practice, enhancing your ability to concentrate better on your breath, postures, and movements.
  • Increased Energy Levels: Coffee’s energy boost can help you feel very awake and invigorated, which can be beneficial for morning yoga practices. This extra energy can help you approach your practice with enthusiasm.
  • Improved Physical Performance: Caffeine has been shown to enhance physical performance by increasing the release of adrenaline, which can help you push through challenging poses or sequences with some ease.

The surprising connection between Yoga and Coffee hinges on the unexpected harmony between their seemingly contrasting elements.

Yoga is associated with calmness and Coffee with energy, so how can they complement each other?

Coffee, when consumed mindfully, can enhance yoga by offering a ritualistic pause for reflection similar to yoga practice.

Coffee’s stimulant properties can increase alertness, enhancing focus in yoga sessions.

Coffee’s flavours and aromas can stimulate the senses, enhancing the overall sensory experience of yoga. Coffee, when consumed in moderation and with mindfulness, can enhance a yogi’s practice, deepening their connection to themselves and the present moment.

The Great News – Brew and Balance: A Monthly Yoga and Coffee Workshop 

Zuma Coffee is creating a yoga and coffee workshop for coffee lovers and enthusiasts – Brew and Balance.

Brew and Balance will be a monthly gathering of coffee lovers and enthusiasts to explore the goodness of yoga and coffee.

Brew and Balance is a space where the aromatic world of coffee converges with the mindful practice of yoga.

This unique experience was inspired by the question: “What can be done with coffee and yoga?”

Brew and Balance, marries the sensory pleasures of coffee with the tranquillity of yoga.

In this workshop, you’ll awaken your senses, focus your mind, and find balance through coffee, making this experience not just about yoga or coffee, but about enhancing your mindfulness and appreciation for the present moment. As well as a new appreciation for your favourite cup of joe.

Yoga and Coffee Workshop Schedule

Section 1: Opening and Intention Setting

  • Warm welcome and overview of the workshop’s theme.
  • Participants set intentions for the session, focusing on mindfulness and sensory awareness.

Section 2: Awakening the Senses with Coffee Aromas

  • Exploration of diverse coffee beans and their distinct aromas.
  • A short meditation centred around the sense of smell, using coffee as the focal point.

Section 3: Pranayama and Coffee Aromatherapy

  • Guided breathing exercises (pranayama) with an emphasis on deep, mindful inhalations and exhalations.
  • Integration of coffee aromas to enhance concentration and induce a state of relaxation.

Section 4: Mindful Coffee Tasting and Mindful 

  • A guided session on tasting various coffee brews, exploring the layers of flavours and textures.
  • Discussion on how mindfulness can elevate the coffee-tasting experience.

Section 5: Gentle Asana Practice and Sensory Integration

  • A gentle yoga sequence designed to meld the sensory experiences of the workshop.
  • Focus on poses that promote balance, mental focus, and presence in the moment.

Section 6: Journaling and Reflection

  • Time for participants to journal, reflecting on their sensory experiences and the insights gained throughout the session.
  • An opportunity for group sharing, allowing participants to express their thoughts and reflections.

Section 7: Closing Circle and Coffee Social

  • A group sharing session to discuss experiences and key takeaways from the workshop.
  • A closing meditation and expression of gratitude.
  • Social time for participants to mingle, discuss their experiences, and explore coffee-related products.

During the workshop, you will be able to purchase all things coffee-related including our flair espresso. You will also be able to ask the baristas any questions you have.

Brew and Balance is more than just a workshop; it’s a monthly gathering for coffee lovers who want to deepen their relationship with coffee and discover new ways to incorporate mindfulness into their daily lives.

The Brew and Balance – Yoga and Coffee workshop is on 22nd March 2024, in Abuja, Nigeria.