I used to be a yoga purist, but….I had a long break from yoga due to illness. Well, about 5 years. I had such severe anaemia & chronic fatigue that at one time I could barely do Savasana (Corpse pose)! Then, with the aid of Ayurveda, and then, eventually, convential medicine it has to be said; I got better and I was able to come back to yoga again full flow.
Before my break, I was most definately a yoga purist and a staunch advocate of the fact that yoga was so accessible – you could do it anywhere. You didn’t need any equipment really – just a mat. And even if you didn’t have a mat, you could practice on your floor. I also purposefully wouldn’t use props for the same reason– but then I have pretty long arms and am fairly flexible – but if I couldn’t reach something, I would prefer to use my clothes as ‘props’ (not for everyone, I know) – but that’s just me. My yoga purism stated that yoga should be kept simple with minimum equipment.
And, ahem, I used to find music slightly off-putting.
After my break away from the yoga scene; and my practice, I came back. Slowly at first. And I very quickly realized that times had moved on. And I felt differently about the music. I started to enjoy the way the music helped with the flow. And I loved the way that even after a class, I might find myself humming to one of the tracks. And I loved that the music stayed with me after my practice – like an extra dimension to the practice.
I’ve also always loved and enjoyed music and now it was the time to put yoga and music together. I have to say, that personally, I can practice to anything, but I quickly learned that this way is not for everyone. I don’t like to anchor anyone to a particular time or place as that would defeat the purpose. I want the class to remain in the moment and to stay present to their practice. The music is not there to put anyone off – it’s to help with the flow! I tend to look out for music without words (as much as possible); although it doesn’t always work out that way.
There are still some yoga purist out there, but I am no longer one of them. In my classes, I play all kinds of music including jazz, dance, dub, classical! It’s often more modern stuff – but I love to mix it up with with chants and chimes etc., I also theme the music to what’s going on – the seasons, the moon cycle or an energy I may want to bring in for the class for example, some weeks might be a tribal theme. Other weeks a funky flow theme.
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How do you feel about music in yoga classes? Let me know in the comments below: