Yoga and music goes hand in hand. According to the Indian musical tradition, the melodies, the rhythmic cycles and the vibrations produced by the sounds can awaken in the body various types of emotions. They are used differently depending on the seasons, or at different times of day or night.
And so far, nothing new. Listening to our music, it’s our heartbeat, the rhythm of breathing and the body temperature … and it is able to awaken in us the memory of past emotions. As happens with the songs of our childhood, or with the musical pieces with which we prefer to be awakened. Or let us cradle in our sleep.
There are types of music for every moment of the day and the year … but also perfect music for what it is doing at a certain time, like the playlist for running, for cooking, for sports … and also for doing yoga.
Yoga and music has a long history together. Nada Yoga, or “Yoga of sound”, is a yoga technique that uses sounds, mantras and music to calm the mind and awaken the spirit. And he has been doing it for many years; the roots of what is called Indian classical music, in fact, are found in the Sama Veda, an “old” text over 4 thousand years.
In the Vedas the whole “wisdom” is collected, handed down from the master to the disciple, and in these sacred scriptures precious teachings are found among which the “science of sound” used as a way of purification and spiritual elevation. Also in the texts of a later period, such as the Upanishads, there are references to the sound, in particular to the primordial sound, or the Om, of which we have spoken in this article.
Turning these sounds into music has been the task of man, who over the years has created songs, genres and different musical styles that have marked the ages, made history and continue to be constantly evolving. The beneficial effects of music on the body, as well as on the spirit, have been studied, among others, by the team of Valorie Salimpoor, of McGill University of Montreal, in a research published in the journal “Nature Neuroscience“, which states that music is like a “drug”, in the sense that it is able to induce the release of pleasure neurotransmitters (dopamine) in the brain, just as it happens when you take pleasant substances … like food!
According to some yoga teachers, and according to some ancient texts, yoga, as usual, should be done without music, as it is considered a disturbing element that does not allow the practitioner to concentrate on listening to the breath and the sensations of the body during practice.
But, let’s think about it. The environment in which we live, with its noises, sometimes even annoying, is an integral and unavoidable part of our daily life, and learning to accept and understand them, thus mitigating their “stressful” effects, is surely important to be able to live peacefully.
However, despite the practice of yoga without music has its advantages, we must consider that the beneficial effects of music on the organism are enormous.Listening to music, especially music created at 432 Hz, is able to generate joy and wellbeing, to induce a deep relaxation, and to stimulate creativity.
Not surprisingly, some of the likes of Mozart, Verdi and Pink Floyd, modulated their music precisely on these frequencies, and even the ever-popular wellness centers use the background music recorded at these frequencies to intensify the beneficial effects of their body care treatments.
So music and yoga are a good match? How music can make yoga practice more fun?
Basically each of us, in our personal practice, has to experiment … and understand what makes him feel better.
It is true that music can divert attention from listening to the body, but it is also true that most of us practice yoga in order to experience a feeling of well-being, both physical and mental, and whether to accompany practice with good music can help us to reach this condition … why not try?
The most incredible things about music and yoga is that as there are many different genres of music there are many different yoga styles so it is so easy and amazing to spice things up combining the perfect yoga music suitable for the type of practice you would like to experience.
Some examples? Some power yoga music would be energizing and with a great rhythm allowing you to go with the flow, the main statement of power yoga. What if you would like to just chill out and relax your muscles, your body’s tension and find some peace in both your body and mind?
You will choose some stretching practice like yin yoga with a gentle caring and relaxing music for yin yoga to accompany your session. How beautiful is that? Spice your practice up with some music and you will boost your yoga session for sure enjoying the benefits of the discipline even more while having fun. Make sure to check out MEDIA page for a great selections of songs!