Sound Off™ Yoga: Have You Heard of It?

It is your Wednesday night yoga class. Finally! Some much needed zen to break up your busy week. Unrolling your mat and beginning to breathe, the stress slowly begins to melts away. Your instructor offers a guided meditation and you are becoming deeply centered in your new sacred space. But then a student arrives late and slams the door, knocks over a water bottle and just like that, your zen is gone . . . damnit!
There really isn’t much we can do to drown out the distracting interruptions during our yoga class. We can try to breathe louder, with hopes we don’t pass out. We can ask the instructor to turn up the music, but then you will be the only one doing Uttanasana (forward fold) when she actually said Utkatasana (chair pose) . . . embarrassing.
A newer trend rocking the yoga world is the Sound Off™ experience. Or yoga with headphones.
These aren’t the tiny headphones that still let you hear a mouse sneeze next door. These headphones drown out all external noise, only allowing the voice of the instructor and the DJ’s music to be heard.
How would this benefit my yoga practice, you ask? Valid question – I asked the same thing!
I have had the opportunity to practice and teach using Sound Off™ and I can honestly say it is a one-of-a-kind experience. My initial concern while practicing was the movement of the headphones during class. Great news! They didn’t move, and I even went upside-down a few times. The Sound Off headphones are adjustable and fit well over my ears.
As for creating the atmosphere? Amazing. Sound Off™ really does help you escape into your own yoga practice by keeping the distractions to a minimum and the focus on your own sacred space.
Not only does the Sound Off™ experience set the tone with the sound, it also sets the tone in the room. Each headphone is lined on the outside of the ear piece with a blue or green LED light. When the room lights are turned low, the glow from the headphones gives you enough light to see your mat, but enough darkness to encourage you to retreat within.

For the yoga teachers or fitness instructors interested in offering a new experience to your students, I recommend it! It took me a minute or two to get used to hearing my own voice in the headphones while I spoke. And I really had to hold back my best Madonna impressions while wearing the mic. But luckily I was able to stay focused and teach yoga besides “vogueing.”

A few tips if you plan on incorporating Sound Off™ into the yoga classes you teach:

  • If you are having a problem with teaching while hearing yourself in the headphones, just remove one side of the headphones off of your ear. This will help you adjust.
  • Remember, your students cannot hear you coming! So if you like to give hands-on adjustments or assists to your students, make sure they can see you. We are not here to scare them into an out of body experience!
  • If you ever invite your students to find a fetal pose or anything on their side, it will be difficult and uncomfortable with the headphones on. You may want to plan modifications ahead of time.
  • Using a mic while teaching requires a little more awareness during class. Walking in front of the speakers can cause that horribly loud feedback that we would all like to avoid. If you have any further questions about this, the Sound Off™ tech can help you before class.
  • Have fun! This is a great opportunity to create a special experience for your students. Sound Off™ gives you the choice to use your own playlist or a hired DJ. Offering a collaboration may provide a uniquely magical and captivating class.

Yoga gives us the opportunity to bring our awareness inward and focus on what is going on internally. It is that time for many of us to find our space, to relax and to let go. Any opportunity to deepen that experience is welcome. Our modern culture is fusing with yoga and creating many exciting new trends. Maybe this one allows us to find that deep savasana – keeping the sirens and honking out of our practice and the quiet, meditation in.
If you are interested in trying a Sound Off™ yoga class, check out soundoffexperience.com to find an event near you, or to contact them and create your own!

Have you heard of this experience yet? Given it a try? Let us know in the comments below! We love feedback, questions and comments.

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Michelle Stanger

Michelle Stanger is a 200-RYT yoga instructor with years of teaching experience. She specializes in Power Vinyasa, Buti Yoga and handstands and is best known as a teacher for her fun, light-hearted attitude and classes that are as challenging as they are welcoming.


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