How to create a good music playlist for a yoga class? My 365 days of yoga
There is always a debate whether there should be music in a yoga class or not? I personally think it should depend on the type of class and the teacher. Some teachers prefer no music in their classes and others take quite some time to find perfect music to match their sequence.
A few questions that pop up in the mind of every new yoga instructor are: Do I use music for my class or not? What should I use for music – i-pod, my i-iphone, cd player or something else? Should I make a playlist for my class? Where should I source music from? does it matter what sequence the songs are in?
When I first had this discussion with my other yogi friends, here are few of the responses I got:
- New Earth Records is one of my favourite labels. You can listen to their music on their site and then buy on iTunes or Amazon.
-I’m loving Blackmill and Passion Pit for upbeat stuff. Helios is nice mellow cool-down stuff. The Beastie Boys did an instrumental album called “The In Sound From Way Out” that I like.
- Radioactive by Imagine Dragons is one of my favourite songs to do sun salutations to. It’s simply energizing and invigorating. Another friend said, she liked Old Pine by Ben Howard.
- Some teachers said that they go back and forth between songs and background music. It simply depends on the vibe of the class.
– I like Amiina, Bonobo, Tycho, Helios, and Nick Drake. I also love Brian Eno’s ambient albums, especially his collaborations with Harold Budd. I’ve been working on a Restorative playlist this week, so this is all stuff that is super mellow.
-Many teachers said that they found it took a lot of work to create a playlist that flowed with the theme of the class so background music is definitely an easier solution but it can be a lot of fun to have a custom playlist too. A senior teacher commented that she loved Kerala Dream by Shaman’s Dream. In her opinion the whole album is awesome.
- Another new teacher who taught 10-12 classes a week said that she was no where near mastering the playlists? She often used 8tracks.com for her classes and so do I.
So as per one of my teachers: My friend if you’re looking for kirtan and traditional devotional music, Deva Premal, Snatam Kaur, and Krishna Das are a good place to start. And I’ve just discovered Steven Halpern’s work. He composes albums intended to compliment meditation practices. His work with Tibetan singing bowls is beautiful. His work is more soundscape than music.
As far as more energetic tunes, Radiohead, Pretty Lights (DJ), Of Monsters and Men, the XX and Beats Antique are some of my favourites, but it’s a matter of personal preference. I’m finding it hard to teach over top of vocals unless it’s in a language I don’t know or it’s a song I know so well that I can tune it out.
Some other resources for creating a good music playlist for your yoga class are: