The Power of Yoga and Music
Everyone loves music and a lot of people also love yoga. So, it makes sense doing yoga to music. In this article, we’re going to delve into the topic of yoga and music because music doesn’t just help make your meditation practice more focused and interesting; it can also add more benefits for your body.
First, is a quick summary on the science of yoga and music, then some tips on how to choose and where to find the best music for your everyday yoga practice.
Studies About Yoga to Music
Listening to Music is often linked to a number of health benefits—some of such includes easing stress and anxiety. Interestingly though, there aren’t any studies that reveal exactly how music provides these benefits.
All we know is that we love music because it helps people get into a “flow state” – which, scientifically, an optimal state of being. This optimal state is often only reserved for elite-performing athletes as well as prime musicians. Everyone can reach this state by using the power of music, to help nurture more creativity apart from its array of health benefits.
The Flow of Music while doing Yoga
The word “flow” (in “flow state”) can often be associated with Vinyasa Yoga, since it uses “flow” to help practitioners focus on breath and movement coordination.
Another form of yoga is also called “the yoga of sound”—Nada Yoga. The word nada is a Sanskrit word for “sound”, hence Nada Yoga literally means – the yoga of sound.
No official categories for Nada Yoga currently exist.
Nada Yoga can be distinguished into:
- chants (devotional songs and music),
- mantras (repetitive spiritual words uttered during practice)
- sounds without either chants or mantras.
How to Use Yoga and Music Combined
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Without a doubt, yoga and music make for a beautiful combination. Music has actually been used for centuries, with yoga often being associated with spiritual types of music as well as instruments including gong and string instruments. Chants and mantras as well have been used just as long with yoga.
Although, some yogis will say that they feel that listening to music only distracts them from their practice (it makes it more difficult for them to focus on their breathing), but expert Young Ho Kim doesn’t agree with this. He said:
“The right music at the right moment can enhance awareness of the present moment”.
What Is the Best Music for Yoga Practice?
The answer is as unique as all other things in your yoga practice. Certain practitioners may not entertain the idea of listening to heavy metal for yoga practice. Others find that chanting music makes it even more difficult for them to concentrate on their thoughts.
Note that before the popularity of Inside Flow, it was unthinkable for many yoga practitioners to combine hip-hop with Vinyasa. Today though, most genres of contemporary music have already become acceptable in practicing yoga. And this, despite the fact that some people are still arguing that only spiritual music can be used or otherwise during yoga practice.
In the end, the preferences for using music or what type of music to use for yoga, will differ from yogi to yogi.
The idea of achieving health and happiness uniquely your way remains.
Does Every Kind of Music Fit Each Type of Yoga?
Sadly, this is a question that still divides a lot of yogis or yoginis everywhere. On the other hand, the major belief is that instrumental music fits all types of yoga well in comparison to other types of music.
Chants and mantra music are also widely accepted.
Other more complicated question about yoga and music though include: Can you use pop music? How about heavy metal instead of hip-hop music?
Just remember that since noise is everywhere anyway, so it may be better to use music—any kind of music—with your yoga instead of none. The best yoga music for you will depend on your judgment and preference.
Where to Find the Best Yoga Playlists for You?
The answer is closely link to how you can create your own best yoga playlist. Read on below for some tips.
How to Create Your Perfect Yoga Playlist
- Select music you like – music that specifically tugs at your heart
- This is the most important factor in choosing the kind of music that you will use on your playlist. You should love listening to it, and secondly, it helps touch your heart & soul.
- Try music with an 8-beat structure
- Modern songs fitting an 8-beat structure make yoga and music a highly intuitive practice so use them instead of some overly complicated songs.
- This time, stick to the basic 8-beat music format to make your practice more effective with music.
- Use music with 50bpm to 120bpm
- You can use these song beats per minute to your advantage, which of course, will depend on your chosen tempo and theme for your practice.
- 50bpm makes a song rather slow, great for calming workouts.
- 120bpm songs, on the other hand, are good for faster or energizing workouts.
- Stay authentic
- The most important thing about choosing your yoga music is to stay true to yourself or be authentic.
- If you feel like listening to hip-hop music, then use hip-hop music.
- If heavy metal interests you, be daring and try it with yoga—be unique and try something new.
- Your first priority must be to keep with your own flow, so don’t be afraid to use music that inspires you.
- Remember to keep legal considerations too in mind when selecting music
- Lastly, if you are a yoga instructor, you need to bear in mind that there are legal aspect to using of music for yoga classes.
- The best choice is to use only royalty-free songs or music for your yoga classes.