A gong bath is known to have many stress relieving and healing benefits. We often get asked if this activity involves getting wet? As with Forest Bathing, when guests sometimes ask if they need to bring a swimming costume with them, the answer is no.
There are a few different names for a Gong Bath, such as a Sound Bath, Gong & Healing and Sound Gong but they generally all mean the same. It’s a natural way to help relax the body and calm a busy mind, using singing bowls and gongs.
During a session, you will usually lie down on mats and get cosy with blankets, pillows and eye masks if preferred.
The session facilitator will then begin by hitting the gongs using a mallet. The length of the event and the amount of available space, may dictate the number and size of the gongs used. Great skill is required to play these instruments correctly, whilst the relaxing participants soak up the benefits of the sounds. A typical Gong Bath lasts between 60 to 90 minutes.
What Are The Stress Relieving and Healing Benefits of a Gong Bath?
1) Rejuvenates the Body and Mind
Gong Baths are highly rejuvenating for the body, inducing a deep feeling of relaxation. When we are relaxed and the chatter in our minds has been silenced, it enables us to enjoy undisturbed, good quality sleep.
2) Brings Down Stress Levels
Stress is not good for us, it’s as simple as that. Whilst it’s unrealistic to try and eliminate stress altogether, we can take steps to reduce it. The deep feeling of relaxation a Gong Bath can induce, means our bodies and minds will feel less stressed. Stress has been linked to many illnesses such as high blood pressure, dementia, headaches and heart disease. The more we can do to reduce stress in our lives, the healthier we will be.
3) Tackles Obesity
Stress causes higher levels of the hormone cortisol to be released into our bodies. This particular hormone increases the amount of fat stored in the abdomen. Excess fat in the belly appears to pose a greater risk to our health than fat stored in the thighs and legs. Hence stress can be linked to obesity, a condition that places a huge amount of adverse pressure on our bodies. Obesity can also lead to life threatening illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease.
4) Reduces Anxiety and Depression
Gong Baths are able to reduce stress and tension and in turn increase blood circulation. This helps bring down our blood pressure and improve our overall mood. When we feel calmer and happier, our mood improves, stress levels lower and we can also sleep better. Poor sleep is a key contributor to feelings of anxiety and depression.
5) Balances the Nervous System
The beautiful sounds and vibrations delivered through a Gong Bath and the relaxing state this puts us in, helps activate the parasympathetic nervous system. This in turn will allow the overworked sympathetic nervous system to take a back seat. To put it simply, the parasympathetic nervous system predominates in quiet “rest and digest” conditions while the sympathetic nervous system drives the “fight or flight” response in stressful situations.
The ever increasing demands on our time and lives means the sympathetic nervous system is often overburdened. By allowing the parasympathetic nervous system to take the lead once in a while, enables the nervous system to rebalance itself.
We have started hosting Gong Baths at the Wellness Yurt; a beautiful and calming space. Participants have been able to immerse themselves in nature and fully relax beneath the Yurt’s dome ceiling.
Due to the popularity of Gong Healing, we are including a session in our longer two night / three days retreats this June and July. This will be run by the highly talented Heidi from Phoenix Yoga and Reiki Healer Tracy. The two of them make quite a team and we are so grateful that our paths have crossed.
If you haven’t tried a Gong Bath yet, it really is something special. The experience is different for everybody and many have commented on the deep sense of peace and bliss they feel afterwards.