SOUND HEAL­ING To re­lax and re­con­nect.

With a fo­cus on deep re­lax­ation and restor­ing equi­lib­rium to the mind and body, sound heal­ing work­shops and re­treats are quickly be­com­ing a well­be­ing buzz­word. Jo Carnegie is a re­cent con­vert

In the Moment - - Contents -

Gong baths, Ti­betan singing bowls, rat­tles, African drums; wel­come to the world of sound heal­ing. A few years ago it would de nitely have been on the ‘far out’ end of the holis­tic spec­trum, but this an­cient prac­tice is now sweep­ing the mod­ern well­be­ing scene.

Once the do­main of South Amer­i­can shamans and the Na­tive Amer­i­can Navajo peo­ple, sound baths are now on the timetable at your lo­cal yoga stu­dio. Sound heal­ing work­shops and re­treats are fast be­com­ing the R&R go-to, while peo­ple are bring­ing their own singing bowls to par­ties across the land. It seems like we can’t get enough – but what is it ex­actly?

The prac­tice it­self goes back thou­sands of years. Its roots are found in ev­ery cor­ner of the world, with tra­di­tions that use sound to bal­ance the en­ergy ow in the body. A newer branch of the eld, known as sound ther­apy, com­bines an­cient tra­di­tion with cut­ting-edge sci­ence, fo­cus­ing on how di er­ent sounds a ect the mind, body and emo­tions. Whether you want to align your chakras or bring down your blood pres­sure, the em­pha­sis is on deep re­lax­ation and restor­ing equi­lib­rium.

Con­verts rave about the bene ts. Gone are the days of med­i­tat­ing for hours on a yoga mat try­ing to quiet a busy mind. In a sound heal­ing ses­sion (also known as a sound bath, as you are ‘bathed’ in sound) you still lie on a mat, but the in­stru­ments used have an in­stant calm­ing e ect.

“The lat­est re­search shows our thoughts a ect our health and well­be­ing,” says Lyz Cooper, founder of the Bri­tish Acad­emy of Sound Ther­apy and au­thor of What Is Sound Heal­ing?.

“If we can change the thoughts and be­liefs that hold us in an un­healthy place, we nat­u­rally start to heal our­selves.”

Switch­ing o to mu­sic is noth­ing new, but the rep­e­ti­tion of rhyth­mic in­stru­ments like rat­tles and drums helps the brain­waves to drop into an

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