How To Relax — Without Listening To Enya

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The right music can make or break your workout. That's why we tapped some of the best instructors, trainers, and DJs to curate the perfect soundtrack for every session.
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This Week: Bethany Lyons, founder of Lyons Den Power Yoga
We all come to the yoga mat with different sets of expectations and needs; some like it hot, some want to relax, and some want to chant. Finding the perfect playlist for your practice (if you're into that kind of thing) can be a challenge, though. And, while the Garden State soundtrack does hit the sweet spot of chill-but-interesting, there are days when you just can’t listen to “In The Waiting Line," because feelings. That’s why we tapped Bethany Lyons, founder of Lyons Den Power Yoga in NYC, to create a new playlist for your yoga flow that hits a similar note — it feels Zen without relying on, you know, Enya.
“Music for a yoga class can shift the energy in a room,” says Lyons, “and can take things to a new level when intentionally and strategically played.” The reason you won’t hear soundscapes in her classes? “I loathe 'background' music in a yoga class," she explains. "It feels forced, careless, and like it is just more noise to tune out. But, a well-played song [comes on] during hip-openers, and the tears flow. I like to play the unexpected.”
One track Bethany keeps on her yoga-playlist rotation is “Looking Too Closely” by Fink. “I love the simplicity and poignant nature of this song,” she says, “as well as the irony of singing in a...plateaued way these incredibly emotional words. We work it out physically, mentally, and emotionally on the mat, and this song embraces all of it.” To end the playlist (and your hour-long practice) Lyons chose “Blue Planet” by Donna Lewis. “It’s pure bliss for Savasana. The words, the intonation of her voice, and the breathy harmonies are haunting and speak right to the soul.”
Don't worry, Zach Braff; you can still curate our commuting playlist. We could use a little Shins Zen there, too.
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