Have you seen those magical and ethereal small bronze colored bowls laying around yoga studios, meditation classes and perhaps your neighbor’s living room? Maybe you’ve picked up a mallet and tried to ring out some sound with one of these lovely little designs. If you aren’t already familiar, these mysterious instruments are known as Singing Bowls.
A Singing Bowl is also known as a Standing Bell. ”A standing bell or resting bell is an inverted bell, supported from below with the rim uppermost. Such bells are normally bowl-shaped, and exist in a wide range of sizes, from a few centimetres to a metre in diameter.”
If you’re lucky enough to have attended a Sound Bath at one of the local studios, you may have experienced the effects of a singing bowl, with its sound washing over you. Many claim that this relieves stress, lessens pain intensity, and is used for “deep relaxation and muscle regeneration, to relieve pain in the joints, muscles and shoulders, to ease pain related to sciatica, the digestive system, headaches and migraine or spine injuries, to improve circulation and release tensions”
“Tibetan singing bowls are a type of bell that vibrates and produces a rich, deep tone when played. Also known as singing bowls or Himalayan bowls, Tibetan singing bowls are said to promote relaxation and offer powerful healing properties. Buddhist monks have long used Tibetan singing bowls in meditation practice.”
What are these bowls made of anyway? We know that they are heavy and almost appear to have a mythical, ancient element to them, often with carved foreign text displayed on their sides. “A Tibetan bowl, generally made from a bronze alloy containing copper, tin, zinc, iron, silver, gold and nickel, is a type of standing bell played by striking or rubbing its rim with a wooden or leather-wrapped mallet. This excitation causes the sides and rim of the bowl to vibrate, producing a rich sound.”
There are many uses of this piece of Bronze alloy. Some use it as a stress relief, as it almost clarifies the human mind - simplifying the noise in your head by providing a strong, full, undeniable tone. If you’re a seasoned Yogi, this is akin to the often hummed “Om”. A preliminary study published in the American Journal of Health Promotion in 2014 examined the benefits of starting a directed relaxation session with 12 minutes of singing bowls and found a greater reduction in systolic blood pressure and heart rate compared to silence before a directed relaxation session”
If you’re in the market for a Singing Bowl, it may be helpful to be hip to the fact that you can choose from the traditional materials of the Bronze alloy, versus Brass, Selenite, Quartz and other beautiful Crystal properties. When it comes to pricing, you can spend anywhere from $24 on Amazon to upwards of $170 for 99.99% pure Crystal.
When questioning whether or not you should add a Singing Bowl to your arsenal, we’ve got to say that you should just go for it! This cannot only add to your healthy lifestyle but it can bring a whole new element to your musical productions. Strap on your seatbelt because this may just open up a whole new world of sound for you!