What is that on your playlist?

yoga tunesWhen I first started yoga, I never really paid attention to the music at all. I had enough to worry about trying to remember what poses were called and to not hold my breath. Once I began teaching, however, I had to figure out what to put on the stereo (never mind how to work the thing) while I was doing class. Fortunately, YogaFit sold numerous CDS of music that was suitable for yoga and so that’s what I played. Music for class meant nothing more than selecting one of a dozen CDs that I had and putting that on. Appropriate yoga music involved instrumentals with piano or maybe something electronic. Certainly nothing you’d listen to on a road trip.

My first exposure to anything but “yoga music” in yoga class occurred in a little studio in Boston. I was there on business and a studio nearby had a class in the right time slot. “Hip Hop Yoga” it was called. Sounded a little weird, but it fit my schedule so off I went. And we did yoga to hip hop music. Really loud, bass-heavy hip hop music – profanity and all. I think it took that to jolt me out of my yoga music haze and make me realize that something other than what  I‘d been doing could be done.

Yoga teachers are most assuredly expanding their yoga music horizons in classes that I take around town.  I think doing a vinyasa flow to Queen’s “Fat Bottomed Girls” was even stranger than the Hip Hop, but I’ve never been a big Queen fan. That said, I now find myself in a very wonderful technological age. I don’t even need a CD for a class any more. I fire up Spotify and I can do whatever I want. Please understand that “do whatever I want” is a challenge for me. In some ways, choosing a CD that was made by somebody else and deemed appropriate for yoga is far more my style than the wide open music canvas I now find myself in front of every week.

One of my achievements was playing Michael Jackson’s Thriller and the 50’s tune “Monster Mash” in a yoga class. Granted, it was the week of Halloween and you can use that holiday to justify almost anything. Still, it was a turning point for me. Music with lyrics!! Popular music!! In yoga class!!! The traditionalists would likely be horrified. I’ve been to yoga studios where they don’t play music at all except maybe in final and only if the yogis have been really good at practicing their breathing.

My new exploration is an album called “Slurp and Giggle” by Opiuo or anything by Phutureprimitive. Not sure what it is exactly. Sort of bumpy and like dubstep. It inspires me. And that’s what really makes yoga music “suitable”

Categories: Lifestyle

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