Downward dogs and daiquiris don’t usually go together, but a yoga class with Antigone ‘Tiggy’ Garner, aka ‘Tiggy the Cocktail Yogi’ might just take adherents in a new and refreshing direction.
Tiggy, Siem Reap’s latest visiting yoga teacher, advocates a more relaxed attitude to the practice – her classes are not so much about doing the perfect back-bend as having fun and achieving what pupils can – there’s “a big focus on daggy jokes,” she says, and class attendees might even end up going for cocktails afterwards.
“Cocktail Yogi’s a bit of a double-entendre,” says Tiggy. “First of all my yoga style is a blend – I normally start off with kundalini, my main style is vinyasa, then I do some yin at the end. Plus I’m really into meditation.
“That’s one reason. Then the other reason is, I’ve done a lot of yoga immersions (intensive courses), and meet a lot of people and become good friends with them.
And there’s always the group who want to go out and have a cocktail afterwards and have a bit of a party time. Like just have this balanced life where we are into health and fitness, but we’re also into having a really great time. And I tend to call us cocktail yogis.”
Tiggy is in Siem Reap for a month and during that time she will teach seven classes a week at Peace Café, at 6.30pm Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and 5pm on Saturday and Sunday.
Classes are also held at Navutu Dreams Resort and Spa on Thursdays at 1.30pm, and on weekends at 11am.
In October, Tiggy, who has worked as a tour guide for seven years, plans to lead cocktail yoga tours, combining yoga classes with sightseeing around Southeast Asia, from Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang.
“I worked as a tour leader for three different companies in three different regions of the world, and what struck me was that there were so many activities packed into every day, and people weren’t getting an opportunity to relax,” she says.
“What I wanted to do was have a yoga tour where people could learn about yogic practices and by getting a little bit every day, learn how to incorporate that into their daily lives while on holiday.
“I’m offering two classes a day, morning and afternoon, and then in the middle of the day people have the choice – to lay by the pool, get a massage, go shopping or go sightseeing.”