Not sure what to expect from a Gong Bath? Here our guest facilitator Anna shares the scoop on what you'll be doing and the benefits! Anna is leading a Gong Bath at the studio on Saturday 2 June, read more & book now.
Never tried a gong bath? Here’s a bit of insight into the benefits and how it works...
We will begin with some simple breathing exercises to centre ourselves, followed by gentle stretches to help prepare the body for stillness. These are accessible for all and no previous experience of yoga is needed.
Next, the participants will be invited to find a comfortable resting position - this may be savasana, lying on the side or seated. Warm layers, blankets and props such a lavender eye-pillow or a boulster under the knees can help ensure complete comfort for optimal relaxation.
I usually start my sound baths with drumming, using a shamanic drum which I made myself. I also use singing bowls before moving on to the gongs then rounding off with grounding sounds at the to prepare everyone for going back out into the world.
The participants are bathed in waves of sound, which many people find helps them to switch off the ‘monkey mind’ and find inner stillness. Sound waves are, of course, vibrations and therefore act like a touchless massage as they move through the participants.
The immersion in sound during a gong bath can help shift the participants’ brainwaves to a different pattern: from the Beta mode of our normal waking state they may shift into the Alpha state, where the brain is relaxed and receptive - also the mode associated with daydreaming and visualising. Some people experience a shift to Theta brainwaves - the mode associated with deep meditation, dreaming sleep and visions - which may lead to moments of insight, a heightened state of consciousness or a vivid visual experience. Finally there’s Delta brainwaves - the slowest mode, associated with deep sleep. If you shift into Delta mode, the body and mind will benefit from this profound rest and at the end of the experience you’ll awake feeling thoroughly refreshed (so don’t be afraid of falling asleep - it’s just achieving incredibly deep relaxation!)
After sound comes silence: an important part of the experience is feeling the resonance of the vibrations once the sound bath is over. We will then gradually reawaken the senses, coming back to the body, breath and wakeful mind. Finally, there will be an opportunity to share experiences before moving back out into the world. You may feel quite thirsty afterwards so it’s advisable to have a bottle of water by your mat.