BEHIND FAME15 :: BLACK YO)))GA: Healing through the power of music and yoga

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by DEVIN ASHMORE

Besides tacos, what’s good about Tuesdays in Pittsburgh? In my experience, there isn't much. I guess it isn't so bad because tacos seem to put a smile on everyone’s faces. But isn’t there more to Tuesdays to be excited about? 

The answer is yes.

I have practiced yoga at Exhale Pittsburgh a handful of times, and when I downloaded their schedule on the MINDBODY app, I saw that every Tuesday night they have a class entitled " BLACK YO)))GA." What an interesting name, I had to know more.

So, this past Tuesday, after a day of Ubering around running errands, making appointments, and of course, eating tacos, I made my way down to the Boulevard of the Allies. As I walked into Exhale, the sun was setting, but we still had some natural light flowing in. Already about five students were seated patiently on their mats. With crystals lining the windows and candles lit around the room, I saw the makings of a good class.

As the sun went down and the room got dark, Kimee, the instructor, began to guide us into a meditative state. And this is where it got interesting. The class was guided by a soundtrack of varying tempos and energies – but all in the dark.  As the music began it had a binaural beat-drone-vibration feel. Accompanied by Kimee's relaxing voice and slow moving Vinyasas, I began to enter a space of healing.

Slowly but surely the music changed to metal. Now, I'm not talking head thrashing metal, but rather deep, dark, slow metal. It came at the perfect time, because the sequences we were doing were beginning to build up energy and fire. Toward the end of the class the music shifted once more to something that, for me, brought release. You know when you're watching a movie and something very dramatic happens, and the background music is equally dramatic, with a female singer sort of wailing…but it’s beautiful? Maybe some really intense background music you might hear in a church? That’s what it reminded me of, that kind of sound. And it was powerful and awesome.

The coolest thing was that the class brought so many people from different walks of life together in the same room. Kimee explained to me that many times, she will have a male student come in wearing jeans. How beautiful is it that a YOGA class can peak someone’s interest enough to arrive in jeans and try it out?

As stated on MINDBODY, BLACK YO)))GA is appropriate “for people who battle depression, anxiety, alcoholism, drug addiction, trauma/PTSD, phobias, dark passengers, etc.; those who may not feel they fit into the typical yoga classes; the people who, in all right, may most need the balance and release of yoga to return to and lead rich, fulfilling lives."

Kimee hold class at Exhale every Tuesday night from 7:15-8:15pm. The class is intended for all levels and is designed to heal. Give it a try, and if you like the music, BLACK YO)))GA soundtracks are available at the studio.

Exhale Pittsburgh: @exhalepgh @black.yoga #loveandbliss

Sara RuthComment