Yoga seeks to discipline the body and mind. Incorporating music into the setting can help you focus on both aspects. Whether you do yoga at home or in classes, yoga music is an important element to consider in establishing the mood and aura that best fit your needs. Yoga music is relaxing and enhances the meditative state of the practitioner. Selecting the most suitable music for yoga exercises depends on which yoga discipline is being practiced and on your personal preferences.
Yoga music is often chosen to match the tempo of a yoga session, which is usually slower than other forms of exercise. Thus, the style of music is also slower than the modern, up-beat songs that are common in workout music. Some practitioners prefer to practice yoga in complete silence, while others like the audible encouragement that music can provide them.
The right selection of music can benefit the practitioner in a number of ways. Yoga music allows you to turn your attention inward to what the body needs to achieve rather than to external distractions. The music can also help guide you through the series of movements and their rhythm. No matter which music you decide to use for your workout, yoga music should be a background element rather than a driving force.
A yoga class generally begins with warm up stretches, progresses to the main exercise of poses and postures, and finishes with cool down stretches. The yoga music you choose should mimic this slow-fast-slow pace while maintaining the rhythm particular to your style of yoga. Yoga disciplines vary from one another in tempo and the level of emphasis they place on the body and mind. The music that you select should reflect the discipline being practiced.
More physical styles of yoga that specialize in training the body with a more rapid transition between poses and postures can be higher in intensity. These yoga sessions should be accompanied by music that is also faster paced and energetic, including such elements as rhythmic percussion and expressive chants. Some mid-tempo modern pop, dance, and trance selections may even be appropriate, as long as they don't distract you from the yoga.
Other yoga disciplines are more spiritual in nature, incorporating extensive breathing exercises, meditation, and lengthy poses that target the mind and spirit. Movements are often slow and fluid from start to finish, and songs that use wind or string instruments can imitate this flow and be relaxing, unintrusive, and conducive to meditation. Yoga music that features vocals is appropriate for most disciplines, but be sure to choose an artist whose voice is soft and soothing rather than overt and forceful so that your focus isn't disrupted.