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With my first yoga in the park class over, I have swiftly moved on to planning for the next yoga in the park event on Tuesday September 6th. I’ve put together my sequence (there’s a focus on back bends and twists), but in praticing it this morning, I came up about 10 minutes short of an hour.

So, dear readers, if you plan to come to class on the 6th, feel free to make some requests in the comments for poses you’d like me to include (or if you’re not as familar with tons of asanas, just let me know a part of your body you’d like to work on, or even something in yoga you want to try more of (what’s all this about mudras? hey, chanting sounds like fun!, say, Kate, let’s open some chakras, and btw, what are chakras anyway?) I’d love to make these classes in the park as personalized and open as possible. It’s the end of summer, it’s magical to be playing  and experimenting in the park as the sun sets.

I’ve also put together a playlist for my next class, which you’ll find below. It may get tweaked a little as well, so if you have something you’re dying to downward dog to feel free to suggest that too.

Yoga playlist #2:

Flume by Bon Iver
Heartbeats by Jose Gonzalez
Half Light I by Arcade Fire
Mushaboom by Feist
15 Step by Radiohead
The World at Large by Modest Mouse
Change of Time by Josh Ritter
September Baby by Joseph Arthur
I’m Going Back There Someday (Muppets cover!) by Rachael Yamagata
Islands In the Stream (cover) by Feist and the Constantines
Feeling Yourself Disintegrate by the Flaming Lips
I Know Places by Lykke Li


One last yoga in the park note. I mentioned it at the end of my class on Tuesday, but I’ve discovered what I think is a great way of cleaning your yoga mat after it gets dirty in the park. Take it in the shower with you! No fancy yoga mat sprays needed, and probably no scrubbing either, the soap and water from you cleans your mat, then just hang it over the shower curtain rod to dry.

Great music can make a mediocre class better or make a good class more memorable. I love music, finding new tunes, and crafting awesome playlist and mix CDs. Putting together the perfect playlist for a yoga class or personal practice has some of the same elements that many mixes (or even stories and movies for that matter) do; start off slow, rise to a peak point, and then build back down again.

But something to keep in mind when designing the music for a  yoga practice is what type of movements you want to include and what level/type of class it is. The music for a power yoga class is clearly going to look very different from a restorative yoga class, same with an Advanced class on a Friday afternoon vs. a beginner class on a Monday morning.

That said, here is a sample playlist I’ve made for a 60-min open level class that is somewhere in the middle as far as speed (it starts and ends pretty restoratively, slowly builds and adds on, gets to a  flow, then plays with some balances and twists before winding down.)

Warm-up (about 10 mins):

Slow Moves by Jose Gonzalez
Bridges by Tracy Chapman
Hysteric (Acoustic) by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Building Heat/Flow (about 20 mins):

Neighborhood by Arcade Fire
Love out of Lust by Lykke Li
Major Tom by Shiny Toy Guns
Dog Days Are Over by Florence and the Machine
Jigsaw Falling Into Place by Radiohead

Trying other stuff (about 15 mins):

Want to Press Play (and then Repeat) by Mascott
It’s a Fire by Portishead
Good Feeling by Violent Femmes

Cool Down (about 10 mins):
Ladies and Gentlemen we are Floating in Space by Spiritualized
Hideaway by Karen O and the Kids

Savasana (about 5 mins):

Green Arrow by Yo La Tengo