Yoga and Music

Yoga and Music All that you should know about it.


A fiery duo, yoga & music

“Without music , life would be a mistake” these words by Friedrich Nietzsche are true in all their senses. Music is more often than not looked as a gift from heavens, after-all it is therapeutic, aids our bodies in daily functioning, makes us feel good, refreshes and most of all uplifts our spirits! Um, does this not seem similar to the benefits offered by yoga? Well, it sure does. Now let’s imagine what it would be like when Yoga and Music are combined! Sounds ethereal, right? However, there are two sides to this coin and before we get into figuring out how this awesome duo of Yoga and Music is, let’s look at what are the do’s and don'ts of this combination.
First things first, yoga & music, to do or not to do?
Well few things are obvious, you wouldn’t want to listen to Rock or Metal while indulging into your Hatha or Vipassana practice (some might prefer, but then to each their own). The reason is pretty simple - the purpose of yogic practice is to attain physical, spiritual and mental well-being.
Patanjali defines yoga as “Yogas chitta vritti nirodha”. Translated from Sanskrit this means yoga is cessation of the modifications of the mind. According to this philosophy yoga calms the fluctuations of the mind. What is left is mental stillness which enables you to experience life as it really is without distracting thoughts or judgements. You may also call it turning inward or coming home to yourself and to your body while the mind quietens. A Duke University paper suggests that music could assist calming our mind and improving our mood by over three times compared to an environment without music. In fact an article, entitled Why Music in Yoga Matters, written by Derek Berres weighs up the pros and cons of combining music and Yoga; "Knowing what music to play and when to play can elevate your classes to another level."
Thus, Yoga and correct choice in music can greatly assist your practice. While some yogis do believe that music rather than mantras can corrupt, disrupt and distort one's practice. However we at Adhiroha feel that it is a matter of personal choice and the principles of Yoga encourage to consider every individuals opinion with regard. Hence it boils down to an individual's personal choice and one should have an open mind and to adapting to new things be it Mantras or Music.
Therefore, the balance of music, mantra, the ragas, swaras and sruthis all should be perfectly matched (or one should at least strive to match) with the kind of yoga practice a person wishes to indulge in. An incorrect balance of the aforementioned elements could disrupt your yogic practice greatly.

The perfect recipe for yoga & music


How to make sure your music isn’t a distraction but a help to your yogic practice
So here’s a brief guide for having the perfect recipe for your Yoga and Music duo

1.Have a Playlist!

You do not want to get up every time your music ends in between your asanas. Make sure you have a playlist ready before your session.

2. Type of music matters

Fast upbeat music, heavy piano recitals or lyrics may not work for everyone during their practice. So start with selecting music that can deepen, motivate and guide your practice.To use the words of well known yoga teacher David Lurey “music is like the banks of a river and your asanas are the river itself led by the many curves and bends of the river banks”.

3. Change music depending on the type of your Yogic practice

Your music should vary depending on what you are doing, While Vinyasa could use dynamic music that you can ‘flow’ with, Hatha is more static so it needs a different - less dynamic -approach. Generally speaking, each type of music be it fast or slow has its own effect and you must know when to use what depending on how it affects you.
For starters, make sure to use engaging and flowy music for the more active parts of your practice and mellow music that facilitates concentration and relaxation for the calmer parts of your practice like balancing poses

4.Bottom Line

Try out some of our recommendations and then gradually can modify them as per your needs and types of yoga practice. Make sure you have a playlist and are using the right kinds of tracks for the right kinds of asanas and breathings also make sure to update and switch your playlists regularly. In the end, it all boils down to how it makes you feel. If it feels good, you’ve made the perfect recipe for Yoga and Music, if not try something else or drop it all together.

Wanna know what we’ve been hearing?Here’s our recommendations

When it comes to finding the right kind of music it could be like finding a needle in a dessert but that’s where your friends at Adhiroha are going to help you. Here is a list of 4 of our favorite playlists. Do note, these are subjective based on one’s preference but you could sure begin from them!

Taste in music is very personal and subjective so take your time to find something that inspires or moves you do some mix and match and see what works the best and if nothing does, make sure you drop it all together and try hearing your own breath. Cause’ trust us, yoga with or without music can change the way you live your life!

Be sure to check back for great new Adhiroha blog articles.