There are so many wonderful sounds to listen to while practicing: crashing waves, your own breath, or a perfectly curated playlist. One of my most memorable sessions~~on a warm spring morning with my mat unrolled on lush green grass~~was accompanied by the heifers in our pasture munching their breakfast. I wish I could cue that up every time I practice, but I'll have get by with other sounds these days. Those cows are in Vermont, after all. And it's January.
Lucky for me, I really enjoying putting together practice playlists. There are so many fantastic artists (past and present) whose work meshes nicely with mindful movement. Whether your musical tastes include instrumental drones or driving beats, there's something that will spark~~and move~~your asana.
Beginning with the former, I was blessed to be able to take a class with DJ Taz Rashid at Wanderlust last year. His music ranges from remixed popular tunes (think "Sweet Emotion" and "Come Together") to soaring ambients, with and without the occasional vocal overlay. It's those instrumentals that I find so versatile. They work nicely for meditation, slow flow practice, or an extended savasana. He is a generous and prolific artist, well worth looking up on Bandcamp, Soundcloud, or your other favorite online music home.
At the other end of my devotional music spectrum are artists like Prem Joshua, Jai Uttal, and MC Yogi. These guys produce uptempo sounds I can't get enough of~~MC Yogi's Elephant Power is a classic from first notes of the Invocation to the close of the bonus track. They're great accompaniments to a fast-paced vinyasa flow ... or a marathon house-cleaning session. Now that's taking your yoga off the mat.
But what if you're new to all this inspirational music stuff? Sometimes it can be hard to know where to look for the tunes you might hear at your regular yoga class. I've mentioned the Yoga Chat podcast here before, where Joni becomes your own personal spiritual sounds DJ. And signing up on sites like Spirit Voyage will give you access to free songs each week. It's a great way to find new artists. I never would have found Ajeet Kaur otherwise, and I had Haseya on repeat for weeks after I downloaded it.
P.S. I'd be remiss if I didn't mention another thing to listen to while you practice ... audio classes on Audible Yoga. You get unlimited access to loads of teachers with classes in a variety of styles each month. And you're not tied down to a screen so you can take your practice anywhere ... even outside next to some cows, if you'd like. I upload at least one class a week. Use my referral code (18936) and get 15 days FREE when you sign up. Give it a try!