A private sound bath or sound immersion experience is known in the wellness world as a wonderful way to relax, rejuvenate, and restore balance to the mind, body, and spirit. Depending on the intention, it can also be a unique way to enhance a special gathering between loved ones, friends, and co-workers or a way to facilitate a deeply meditative experience. If you’ve been invited to your first sound bath or you’re thinking about scheduling one for yourself and a friend, you may have a few questions about how to prepare.
First, what is a sound bath?
Much like its name suggests, a sound bath or sound meditation is where participants are deeply immersed in a variety of different sounds, tones, frequencies, and vibrations. The combination of different sounds intricately woven together is often soothing in nature, helping to shift brain waves from an active state to a slower, more relaxed state. The experience invites deep rest and relaxation and an opportunity to explore self-inquiry, self-discovery, and inspiration. While instruments vary from event to event, a typical sound bath might include a combination of crystal and Himalayan singing bowls, chimes, gongs, drums, tuning forks, or other instruments to include the human voice.
Should I do anything special to prepare?
There’s nothing particularly special you need to do when preparing for a sound bath. It is recommended you be well hydrated before your experience as sound and vibration travel much better through water. It may also be a good idea to eat something light about an hour or so prior to your arrival so you do not become hungry during the experience. If you have hunger pains or a growling stomach during the event, it may distract you from fully enjoying your experience.
Deciding What to Wear
Comfort is key when participating in a sound bath. The more comfortable you are, the more you will be able to relax and allow yourself to fully engage in the experience. Loose non-restrictive clothing is always a good choice, or perhaps comfortable athletic attire. If you tend to get cold, be sure to bring a sweater or light jacket that can be used as an optional covering, so you’re not distracted by the temperature.
What is provided and what should I bring?
In this current environment, sound bath venues may differ on what is provided. If you’re not sure, it’s best to clarify this with the facilitator ahead of time. Remember comfort is key to making the most of your experience. If you have issues lying down for long periods, be sure to bring a light towel, pillow, or bolster to place under the knees, head, or neck to promote comfort. Since hydration is important, you may want to bring a bottle of water as well.
Our meditation room is furnished with adjustable floor chairs that can recline flat. Complimentary eye covers are also provided. For those who have difficulty sitting or lying low to the ground, regular chairs can also be provided. We encourage guests to bring a yoga mat in case they prefer to stretch out and lie completely flat. Optional items you may bring for comfort include a light blanket, pillow, or towel to be folded and used under the head and neck.
If you must bring your cell phone into the sound bath venue, be sure to turn it off or have it on do not disturb. There’s nothing more distracting than a phone going off during your experience to bring you out of “the zone.”
How long does the Sound Bath last?
A typical sound bath experience is about 45-60 minutes long. For our Private Sound Bath experience, plan for about 75 minutes. Larger groups may need extra time for settling in and getting comfortable. An “Energy Grounding” session is also provided for individual guests after the sound bath. This may add to your overall time.
What can I expect to feel during my experience?
Everyone experiences a sound bath differently and it’s hard to tell how one will feel. Participants have expressed a variety of different experiences from emotions, unique bodily sensation, a deep meditative state, to a dream-like awareness. A study in 2016, found that participants in sound meditations experienced an improved mood, decreased stress, and an increase in spiritual well-being. If you are a person who is particularly sensitive to sound, it may be a good idea to let your facilitator know or arrive early to position yourself farther away from the instruments.