Music festivals are happening every weekend in the United States and beyond. I’ve had the opportunity to attend various yoga festivals and most recently, Wanderlust Whistler, Bumbershoot and the 2016 Symbiosis Gathering. These music and arts festivals are popping up everywhere and each one is tailored towards different crowds seeking different experiences.
Music and yoga are two arts that go hand in hand. In many classes teachers will include a playlist during instruction. The unique aspect about music festivals are that sometimes the music played during a class is live and more organic. There is no playlist planning and sometimes the sounds of nature is all you need.
The yoga line-up at Symbiosis Gathering includes a variety of teachers and styles. When people think of yoga as a core component within a festival, they imagine that you’d have to be a Level 3 Yogi to participate in the event, but that is definitely not the case. It just requires a bit of research and planning to blend a worthwhile yoga practice into your festival experience.
With all the choices in music and yoga festivals, it can be difficult to decided how to plan your festival itinerary. Luckily we’ve been to quite a few festivals and can help you plan an efficient route for your next music + yoga festival.
3 Tips to Plan Your Music + Yoga Itinerary
#1 Is there a festival app?
A smartphone app has been very helpful in mapping out my festival plan. Bumbershoot and Wanderlust both had apps. I could choose and enroll to see the yoga teachers and artists that interested me directly in the palm of my hand through the app. You could also access a map of the festival all in the palm of your hands. What I really loved about Bumbershoot’s app was that it gave me 15 minute notifications for when an artist was coming on stage. Of course I still missed artists because that’s the nature of a music festival and most likely two of your favorite artists are playing at the same time. Symbiosis Gathering (SG) does not have an app. The nature of the festival is more organic and going without a festival plan may be serendipitous. The festival is much smaller (approx. 5,000 festival goers). However the SG website does provided enough information online for you to plan your route using a smartphone calendar app or the good ol’ paper and pen.
#2 Research the schedule and instructors
Check out the line-up of instructors and artists. Most of this information is made available online a few months or even days prior to a festival.
Have the schedule available on your phone or in hand when you arrive to the festival. Seeing the schedule will help you plan your route. Place the yoga and music schedules side by side and begin to circle which artists you want to see and which instructors you want to practice with. The festivals will often offer class descriptions and bios of each instructor to help you choose the options that most resonate with you.
Symbiosis Gathering provides an online yoga listing of instructors. They also host an Experiential Academy a week prior to the music festival.
#3 Planning your schedule
Using the your marked schedule of what instructors and performers you’d like to see, start to mark them in the app or add them to your a calendar. The calendar I find most useful is Google Cal. My calendar information is accessible offline because my phone syncs the information regularly. I take a good look at my calendar and find schedules that overlap and determine what my priorities are for that festival. Some questions you may ask yourself are 1) Do you want to see an artists’ entire performance or 2) Will half of their performance be OK because it affords you some time to see another artist? There are so many factors in planning your schedule so definitely spend time doing so because it will ultimately enhance your festival experience.
We always recommend planning because there are so many moving parts to a festival and you want to guideline so that you do not miss any of the important moments.
This is what we’re definitely looking forward to at Symbiosis Gathering – meeting JP Spears!
Now that you have your schedule planned, it’s time to turn off your data and unplug from the rest of the world!
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