Local experts pair love of wine with relaxation techniques
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Excerpt from NiagaraFallsReview.ca
Ready to get mellow with some Merlot?
If meditation wasn’t relaxing enough, Niagara couple Natalie Worden and Jordan Cowe are adding wine to the mix with a five-part summer course starting June 29 in Niagara-on-the-Lake.
BeWineful Winefulness 101 is designed to educate while you meditate, feeding the mind with local wine culture while relaxing the body at five different wineries.
“It’s basically mindful-based meditation using wine as a point of focus for it,” says Worden, who along with Cowe works for Niagara Vintage Wine Tours.
Cowe, a Certified Wine Educator and Sommelier, has been meditating for nearly 10 years, using it to combat anxiety. His panic attacks returned when he started working in the wine industry, and he used the similarities between mindful eating meditations and the wine industry to come up with Winefulness.
“With mindful meditation, you’re focussing on the feeling of your breath coming in and out of your body,” says Cowe.
The aroma of wine enhances the process, giving the participant something to focus on.
Other courses highlight the taste of different wines, their creation and process.
Sessions run on Thursdays until July 27, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
The concept of alcohol and mindfulness isn’t new - in recent months, ‘beer yoga’ has grown in popularity.
“Mindfulness is definitely a way to deal with the social anxieties that we deal with every day,” says Worden. “Most people would relax with a glass of wine at the end of the day anyway, so why not enhance that experience?”
Cowe says as yoga and meditation becomes less religious and more secular, alcohol is less taboo.
“Alcohol causes a lot of people to relax naturally, clear their mind naturally,” he says. “Help people escape some barriers…in small quantities, obviously.”
The course takes place at Pondview Estate Winery June 29, Pallatine Hills Estate Winery July 6, Hinterbrook Winery July 13, Small Talk Vineyards July 20 and Marynissen Estates July 27.
“Meditation is scary to a lot of people, it’s something kind of esoteric,” says Cowe. “So when you give them a way of trying it normally, it excites them. With wine, when I mention it to them, within seconds they’re like, ‘Oh, okay.Ya!’
“It’s an instant reaction.”
Tickets are $45 per session, or $180 for the whole course. For more information, click here.