How To Play A Singing Bowl
A week ago
Singing bowls, also known as Tibetan or Himalayan singing bowls, are bowls long used by monks and closely linked with Buddhism and other spiritual practices. They are actually a type of bell and, when played with a mallet, produce profound, deep sounds. They are wonderful for mediation or sound healing and have been linked to many benefits including:
- Stress Relief
- Improving Sleep
- Enhancing Mood
- Stimulating the Immune System
- Achieving Balance and Harmony in the body
- Removing Negative Energy
While there are several techniques for playing a singing bowl, here we'll be covering the basics and some tips for how to achieve the best results. Below are step by step instructions and our best advice on how to play your new singing bowl.
Playing a bowl is a meditation so being mindful of your posture is important. Find a comfortable position on the floor or somewhere you can be relaxed but alert. As you prepare, take note of your spine, ensuring that it's upright and that your shoulders are relaxed but not slouching. This position allows your breath to be supported and your body to be rooted.
Place the bowl in the palm of your hand and hold it level with your solar plexus. Place your elbow a few inches away from your ribcage giving you room to breathe. This position should should feel natural and comfortable and allow you to focus on your meditation. Take care that you don't grip the bowl with your fingertips as this can hinder the vibrations and affect the sound quality while playing. Allow the bowl to rest in your hand with your fingertips relaxed and extended. When you feel ready, tilt the bowl slightly in the direction the mallet will be coming from.
Hold your mallet by the small end with your thumb and pointer finger and find a hand position that feels comfortable for you. Your grip should be firm but not too tight.
Moving the Mallet
Now you're ready to start making music! Begin by lightly striking the bowl on the middle of the exterior wall and then immediately place the mallet vertically on the outside edge of your bowl and start moving it around the edge in a clockwise motion. Use your entire arm to complete this motion and not just your wrist. It's important to start moving the mallet as soon as contact with the bowl is made.
The pressure between the bowl and the mallet should be firm and your motion should be fluid. You can move quickly at first to get going and then slow down once you hear a nice, bright, female overtone. It will take around 5 complete circles (at least) until you hear this tone. At this point, increase the pressure slightly and continue moving your mallet around the bowl.
Let the Bowl Be Your Guide
Remember, you're not alone in this practice. Your bowl is your teacher and friend and will guide you as you begin to combine your two energies. Listen to what your bowl is telling you and you'll be harmonizing in no time.
Check out this video for a visual guide to playing your singing bowl.
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