My only problem with music in class is when it's either played too loud, or what seems to be happening more so lately, especially with the influx of younger teachers, is the playing of modern music - coldplay, sheryl crow, dave matthews etc. Even tho they are playing the mellower side of these type of artist's the vocals are are still very very distracting. Why am i listening to someones break-up song while i'm trying to cultivate some inner peace & balance??
Its important to recognize music as sound current and make sure that if music is being played in class it is of a high frequency which can be beneficial to the practice. In Kundalini Yoga music is a big part of the experience, but it is all based on mantras and chanting which help elevate the spirits and the energy of the environment also helping the connection to the inner world. So in this case music in class has a very specific purpose which is attached to the practice itself.
There are no real "musts" given here.
when my mind is distracted music helps calm me. but inner music is a the goal.
Indian Instrumental or Background Sitar Music reflects environment of peace.Chanting or vocal music makes it harder for me to teach in the class.I am trying to keep my voice softer & background music makes it easier for the class to understand.Yoga is to move like a wave, Some day, I wish, my students could just follow me without my words. Blessings Veena
I agree with Lata Shreee, about Reema Datta's CD. I have started to practice in the morning with this CD, and it just sets the mod for my day. It is extremely soothing and calming. I know that Ayurveda suggests that you chant and concentrate on the food that you are preparing. I love singing along to this CD while I am cooking. It's a joy to listen to.
Music with lyrics or too much energy makes it very difficult for me to enjoy savasana. Silence is best for savasana and meditation for me unless it is very subtle background music.
As for the rest of my practice sometimes I enjoy music and sometimes I enjoy silence. The silence is one thing I love so much about Ashtanga yoga because it becomes such a deep, focused moving meditation. Music however brings life to Vinyasa yoga, giving it a different energy that is fun and uplifting. A good balance of the two is probably the best combination as people flow with their moods or thrive in the core of the silence within.
My beginners' classes 11 years ago were small, intimate, and quiet. Silence gave me the room to focus deeply inward, particularly when I took my practice back home during the week and the instructor's voice and demonstrations didn't intervene.
These days I attend "all-levels" classes in a big gym, where the music muffles the other gym sounds and those emanating from my 40-60 classmates. The instructor often synchs to the sounds, and the rhythm is soothing. Now, I have a CD I play at home when I hit the mat.
But just last week while at home, I skipped the CD, and after warming up with a few sun saluations, lifted myself into a high lunge and was suddenly struck by the sound of my heart beating in my chest. The connection to my body immediately drew my focus into my body in ways that I realized had been missing from my practice for several months now.
I always try to work with silence, going so far as to put in earplugs and cover them with headphones. When I go to practice Yoga this preference becomes even stronger.
Silence is a wonderful accompaniment for a quieting mind.
I will like to add to your list of CDs one more CD of a debutante, Reema Datta. Her CD- Love, Truth, Creation is melodious with perfect prunciations. Her soft voice combined combined with several enchanting musical instruments can enhance any yoga practice or can be listened to relax and rejuvenate oneself any time.