Posted by: thehungryrunner | September 8, 2010

Music for post-run stretching or yoga: Blissful piano by Michael Strening Jr.

This is cross-posted to my other blog, The Flexibility Coach Blog.

I’m taking a break from my usual percolations about running (and eating) to gush a bit about some music I have stumbled upon and just can’t recommend enough, particularly for some soothing post-run stretching or yoga:  piano music by Michael Strening, Jr. — www.msj-music.com.

I happened upon it strictly by happenstance:  Living mere footsteps away from our town’s annual outdoor festival — which includes a huge craft fair, the ubiquitous temporary amusement park (I must admit having a secret penchant for riding the Ferris Wheel, though), dining tents, etc. — it’s only natural that we typically spend a portion of the Labor Day weekend attending the festivities.  And this past Sunday, we had the good fortune to time one of our visits so that our leisure stroll was accompanied by these warm, sunny, rippling piano notes that perfectly echoed the bright, breezy, mild weather our area was graced with all weekend.

It was the kind of music that some deep recess of your brain is listening to and enjoying constantly, even as your conscious mind is only hazily aware of it.  At some point I spotted a table on which the artist’s CD’s were being displayed, as only then did it dawn on me to stop and appreciate the lovely music that had been cascading seamlessly through my head.  We resumed our meandering, but now I was distracted; I couldn’t shake my newfound awareness of this delightful music.  It evoked the same kind of emotions I feel when out for a super-early run, right at that moment when the pre-dawn gives way to the first sign of sunrise.  I’d call it ”breaktaking,” but more like, “breathMAKING” — where I suddenly pause, waiting, until indeed I notice my breath is streaming in and out calmly, almost imperceptably.

So needless to say, I had to redirect my husband’s and my course and approach the musician, Michael Strening, Jr., and purchase one of his CD’s!  It turns out he was as delightful a person to talk to as he is gifted with his music.

Based on our conversation and his recommendation, we chose his “Falling Water / Music for Relaxation” CD.  My intention is to use it as an accompaniment for my upcoming fall session of yoga classes, but I have to tell you, given it’s already been on continuous play as I do my normal daily work for The Flexibility Coach, it will be difficult to wrestle it out of my home CD player!

So the next time you’ve finished a run and are ready to do some stretching or yoga (be it my Stretches for Runners or someone else’s routine), I highly recommend you check out Michael’s music to set the mood, it’s truly exceptional!

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