Sweat to the Beat

By Monica Hand – November 30, 2018
Photography Courtesy of Soundscape and Wildheart Yoga


Live music and fitness. Two of Austin’s greatest assets. Similar to how food trucks use brisket to enhance their breakfast tacos, some fitness studios are utilizing live music to enhance the experience. 

The incorporation of music into movement opens several possibilities for changing the tempo of a typical class. 

For example, at Ballet Austin you’ll find one of the most authentic and energizing live music fitness experiences in traditional West African dance classes. In these classes, the whole body is moving to the beat of the drums as the instructor, Jean Claude Lessou from The Ivory Coast, Africa, leads you through traditional West African movements. This creates a special energy the whole class takes part in, no matter an individual’s experience level. The class doesn’t require any prior experience or specialized clothing, it’s just recommended that attendees wear loose clothing and dance with bare feet. 



Stretch Yoga Austin has a series called Stretch Soundscapes, which brings in the trend of the “silent disco,” combining its headphone technique with the traditional form of yoga studio classes. In this series, the teacher’s instructions are streamed directly through the headphones to participants, along with their selected musical accompaniment from the live DJ. The addition of headphones creates a personalized internal space, helping participants connect the mind to the body. 

Many other yoga series also celebrate the city’s love of music through special live music classes with the backdrop of a live performance by a local artist. These kinds of classes can be found at places like Austin Bouldering Project and Wild Heart Yoga, which both offer monthly flow classes accompanied by live music.

Wild Heart Yoga has a series that takes place during the full moon. The outdoor classes are instructed by candlelight and are accompanied by a live musician. From acoustic/electric guitar, drum circles, harmonium, singing bowls to DJs, the classes are unique each month based on the genre of harmony that is paired with the salutations. 



Dub Academy, an electronic arts school, also offers a monthly series called Trap Yoga Tuesdays, which features a live DJ each session and get the zen vibes out to the beats.

Similarly spin studios, like Love Cycling, offer special edition classes and events that feature live DJs to pump up the energy.  

No matter how you decide to sweat it out, try adding some live music to the mix at your next workout. You’re in the the Live Music Capital of the World, after all.   



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