Sound Healing might appear on the surface as a recent wellness trend, but its origins can be traced back for many years. From drumbeats and chanting in ancient Egypt, to singing bowls in Nepal, Tibet and India and indigenous Australians who used ancient didgeridoos - sound has been used throughout the ages in many forms to aid relaxation.
Just like music can evoke different emotions and feelings - sound therapy practitioners use tonal frequencies to bring the body into an aligned vibrational state of balance and harmony.
Sound healing is now widely available in spas, yoga studios and at retreat locations - but if you’ve yet to give it a try, we’ve created a micro 1 minute session that you can return to whenever you feel called.
As part of our month of micro rituals we’ve partnered with Manchester-based sound therapist Sabira Jade to bring you a mini sound healing meditation to try at home with headphones.
How does it work?
During a session which can last anywhere from 20 minutes to 90 minutes, you’ll typically be invited to lie down on a yoga mat, perhaps with the option to place a weighted eye mask on and a blanket, and simply listen as a practitioner plays a variety of instruments while you "bathe" in the soothing sounds and vibrations (why it’s also referred to as a sound bath.)
A sound bath may consist of a variety of instruments including gongs, tuning forks, crystal or Tibetan singing bowls and voice. Whatever combinations of sounds used - the intention is the same. To create a variety of vibrations and frequencies to put you into a deep state of meditation. And it’s during this state that healing can be facilitated.
What are the Benefits
Sound healing is a holistic and passive experience. All you need to do is relax while the practitioner leads the session. Although you are passive in the experience - the benefits are far reaching: sound healing can help you feel more relaxed, more rested, reduce feelings of stress and anxiety and improve your sleep.
During relaxation a shift occurs within the body. The brain moves from a beta-dominant brainwave state – this is when we’re concentrating, focused or feeling ‘wired’ – to a restful and calmer alpha-dominant brainwave state. In other words we move into the parasympathetic nervous system - the part of our nervous system that is responsible for rest and digest - which activates the body’s own self-healing.
Anything Else I Should Know?
Some people report feeling the release of stuck energy during a sound healing. Think of it as "energetic deep tissue massage" that leaves you feeling balanced and renewed. Like with other forms of energy work you may experience sensations in the body such as tingling or feelings of warmness or coolness. If this happens try not to get attached to the sensation but simply notice and bring your awareness back to your breath.
Don’t forget sound healing is all around us. Lucky enough to live close to a woodland, hiking trail or park? Take a moment to actively listen to the birds, the rustling leaves or sounds of water.
Alternatively, we have a number of sound healing playlists on our Spotify page - perfect for an extended Savasana after your yoga practice.
A quick google search should bring up local sound healing events and sessions close to you.
However, If you live in Manchester, the wonderful Sabira Jade is running a variety of sound healing and yoga day retreats and sessions from January to March 2023 - you can find out more and book tickets here, in addition she hosts regular sound healing workshops that come highly recommended in Chorlton.