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Positive hertz morning wake up stress free music

Music can have a profound effect on both the emotions and the body. Faster music can make you feel more alert and concentrate better. Upbeat music can make you feel more optimistic and positive about life. A slower tempo can quiet your mind and relax your muscles, making you feel soothed while releasing the stress of the day. Music is effective for relaxation and stress management.

Research confirms these personal experiences with music. Current findings indicate that music around 60 beats per minute can cause the brain to synchronize with the beat causing alpha brainwaves (frequencies from 8 – 14 hertz or cycles per second). This alpha brainwave is what is present when we are relaxed and conscious. To induce sleep (a delta brainwave of 5 hertz), a person may need to devote at least 45 minutes, in a relaxed position, listening to calming music. Researchers at Stanford University have said that “listening to music seems to be able to change brain functioning to the same extent as medication.” They noted that music is something that almost anybody can access and makes it an easy stress reduction tool.

So what type of music reduces stress the best? A bit surprising is that Native American, Celtic, Indian stringed-instruments, drums, and flutes are very effective at relaxing the mind even when played moderately loud. Sounds of rain, thunder, and nature sounds may also be relaxing particularly when mixed with other music, such as light jazz, classical (the “largo” movement), and easy listening music. Since with music we are rarely told the beats per minute, how do you choose the relaxation music that is best for you? The answer partly rests with you: You must first like the music being played, and then it must relax you. You could start by simply exploring the music on this web page. Some may relax you, some may not. Forcing yourself to listen to relaxation music that irritates you can create tension, not reduce it. If that happens, try looking for alternatives on the internet or consult with Counseling Service staff for other musical suggestions. It is important to remember that quieting your mind does not mean you will automatically feel sleepy. It means your brain and body are relaxed, and with your new calm self, you can then function at your best in many activities.

Experiment now. Experience a “sound bath” and let the music carry you away

The links below each open relaxing musical selections in YouTube.

A Moment of Peace Meditation
Aneal & Bradfield, “Heaven and Earth Spirits” track from Life & Love). Lovely contemporary piano music with accompanying instruments and nature scenes.

Echoes of Time
C. Carlos Nakai from the Canyon Trilogy. Serene Native American flute music, with a picture of Nakai backlit by the sun at the Grand Canyon.

The Winding Path
Ken Kern from The Winding Path. Highly rated, beautiful piano music with accompanying instruments with pictures of exquisite flowers and plants.

Classical Indian Music for Healing and Relaxing
Gayatri Govindarajan, “Pure Deep Meditation” track. Lovely and rhythmic music played on the veena, the most ancient of the Indian plucked-instruments, with nature scenes.

Angels of Venice
Angels of Venice from Music for Harp, Flute and Cello. Classical with 3 instruments with nature pictures.

Earth Drum
“Spirit Vision,” (David & Steve Gordon. Serene and lovely contemporary Native American informed-drumming music utilizing Taos Log Drum and Incan Pan along with other instruments and ocean/forest nature scenes.

Buddha Spirit
Aneal & Bradfield from Light & Love. Reflective but strong contemporary music utilizing various instruments and occasional humming voices with colorful oscillating fractals

Spa Relaxing Music
Tranquil contemporary instrumental with piano and a fixed candle light.

Relaxation Music: 1-Hour Meditation Candle
Serene contemporary instrumental with piano and one flickering candle.

Sleep Deeply
Dan Gibson. Nature sounds and instrumental, tranquil sleep music.

Weightless
Marconi Union. The sounds on this video are carefully arranged harmonies, rhythms, and bass lines that help slow a listener’s heart rate, reduce blood pressure, and lower levels of the cortisol stress hormone.

What are binaural beats?

When you hear two tones — one in each ear — that are slightly different in frequency, your brain processes a beat at the difference of the frequencies. This is called a binaural beat.

Here’s an example:

Let’s say you’re listening to a sound in your left ear that’s at a frequency of 132 Hertz (Hz). And in your right ear, you’re listening to a sound that’s at a frequency of 121 Hz.

Your brain, however, gradually falls into synchrony with the difference — or 11 Hz. Instead of hearing two different tones, you instead hear a tone at 11 Hz (in addition to the two tones given to each ear).

Binaural beats are considered auditory illusions. For a binaural beat to work, the two tones have to have frequencies less than 1000 Hz, and the difference between the two tones can’t be more than 30 Hz. The tones also have to be listened to separately, one through each ear.

Binaural beats have been explored in music and are sometimes used to help tune instruments, such as pianos and organs. More recently, they have been connected to potential health benefits.

What health benefits are binaural beats claimed to have?

Binaural beats are claimed to induce the same mental state associated with a meditation practice, but much more quickly. In effect, binaural beats are said to:

  • reduce anxiety
  • increase focus and concentration
  • lower stress
  • increase relaxation
  • foster positive moods
  • promote creativity
  • help manage pain

Meditation is the practice of calming the mind and tuning down the number of random thoughts that pass through it.

A regular meditation practice has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety, slow down the rate of brain aging and memory loss, promote mental health, and lengthen attention span. Practicing meditation regularly can be quite difficult, so people have looked to technology for help.

Binaural beats between 1 and 30 Hz are alleged to create the same brain wave pattern that one would experience during meditation. When you listen to a sound with a certain frequency, your brain waves will synchronize with that frequency.

The theory is that binaural beats can help create the frequency needed for your brain to create the same waves commonly experienced during a meditation practice. The use of binaural beats in this way is sometimes called brain wave entrainment technology.

How do you use binaural beats?

All you need to experiment with binaural beats is a binaural beat audio and a pair of headphones or earbuds.

You can easily find audio files of binaural beats online, such as on YouTube or via downloaded audio files to your mp3 player or mobile device.

As mentioned earlier, for a binaural beat to work, the two tones have to have frequencies of less than 1000 Hz, and the difference between the two tones can’t be more than 30 Hz.

You can also decide which brain wave fits your desired state. In general:

  • Binaural beats in the delta (1 to 4 Hz) range have been associated with deep sleep and relaxation.
  • Binaural beats in the theta (4 to 8 Hz) range are linked to REM sleep, reduced anxiety, relaxation, as well as meditative and creative states.
  • Binaural beats in the alpha frequencies (8 to 13 Hz) are thought to encourage relaxation, promote positivity, and decrease anxiety.
  • Binaural beats in the lower beta frequencies (14 to 30 Hz) have been linked to increased concentration and alertness, problem solving, and improved memory.
  • Binaural beats of 40 Hz were found to be helpful in enhancing training and learning, according to a 2020 study.

When listening to binaural beats, it’s best to sit in a comfortable place free of distractions. Listening to the binaural beat audio for at least 30 minutes each day in your headphones ensures that the rhythm is entrained (has fallen into synchronization) throughout the brain.

You can experiment with the length of time you listen to the binaural beats to find out what works for you. For example, if you’re experiencing high levels of anxiety or stress, you may want to listen to the audio for a full hour or longer.

Remember, you must use headphones for binaural beats to work. You may also want to listen with your eyes closed.

Is there any research to support the claims?

While most studies on the effects of binaural beats have been small, there are several that provide evidence that this auditory illusion does indeed have health benefits, especially related to anxiety, mood, and performance.

  • An older 2005 controlled study in roughly 100 people about to undergo surgery also found that binaural beats were able to significantly reduce pre-operative anxiety compared to similar audio without the binaural tones and no audio at all. In the study, anxiety levels were cut in half for people who listened to the binaural beat audio.
  • A 2007 uncontrolled study asked eight adults to listen to a binaural beat CD with delta (1 to 4 Hz) beat frequencies for 60 days straight. The results of the study found that listening to binaural beats for 60 days significantly reduced anxiety and increased the overall quality of life of these participants. Since the study was small, uncontrolled, and relied on patient surveys to collect data, larger studies will be needed to confirm these effects.
  • One larger 2011 randomized and controlled trial looked at the use of binaural beats in 291 patients admitted to the emergency department at a hospital. The researchers observed significant decreases in anxiety levels in patients exposed to audio with embedded binaural beats compared to those who listened to audio without binaural beats or no audio at all.
  • A 2019 study combined the effects of binaural beats and autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR), a phenomenon of a relaxation response to certain audio or visual triggers. It was suggested that the combination of the two were more beneficial than either separately.
  • However, a 2015 review of studies found that most studies in this area are limited or contradictory, and that there’s evidence of diminishing impact over time. More research is needed to fully understand the potential benefits and how they differ from monaural beats.

Are there any side effects to listening to binaural beats?

There are no known side effects to listening to binaural beats, but you’ll want to make sure that the sound level coming through your headphones isn’t set too high. Prolonged exposure to sounds at or above 85 decibels can cause hearing loss over time. This is roughly the level of noise produced by heavy traffic.

Binaural beat technology could be a problem if you have epilepsy, so you should speak with your doctor before trying it. More research is needed to see if there are any side effects to listening to binaural beats over a long period of time.

The bottom line

With several human studies to back up the health claims, binaural beats appear to be a potential tool in the fight against anxiety, stress, and negative mental states.

Research has found that listening daily to audio with binaural beats may have positive effects on:

  • anxiety
  • memory
  • mood
  • creativity
  • attention

Learning to meditate isn’t always easy. Binaural beats won’t work for everyone, and they aren’t considered a cure for any particular condition.

However, they might offer an auditory escape for those interested in relaxing, sleeping more peacefully, or entering a meditative state.

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