How to Choose Relaxation Music
How do you choose the best relaxation music for you? Experiment.
Try several types of music and several specific compositions
that seem to be relaxing. Always try them in similar circumstances
though, in order to have a fair test.
However, this is not completely a matter of personal taste
and preference. Some principles have been identified about what
types of music are more likely to relax us. This has been studied
by science, though not thoroughly, but we can also be guided
by other's experiences.
People have often reported, for example, that baroque music
causes them to relax. Baroque music at 60 beats per minute has
been shown to cause your brain to produce more alpha brainwaves.
Why is this important? More on that in a moment, but first here
are some specific compositions you might find very relaxing.
A. Corelli - Concerto No. 7 in D Minor
J.S. Bach - Concerto in G Minor for Flute and Strings
J.S. Bach - Prelude From Cello Suite
A. Vivaldi - The Four Seasons
G.F. Handel - Concerto number 1 in F
Telemann - Double Fantasia in G Major for Harpsichord
Often it's just certain passages or movements of these - most
commonly those referred to as "largo" - that are most
Of course there really is a personal element here as well.
Different people find everything from light jazz to eastern sitar
music to be good relaxation music. Even generic easy listening
music with sounds of nature mixed in works well for many. However,
for a more scientific approach to relaxing, budget a bit more
and try true meditation CDs using "binaural beats."
Relaxation Using Brainwave Entrainment
Certain types of music - like the classical pieces listed
above - work better than others because of what they do to our
brainwave patterns. Our brains primarily produce "beta"
brainwaves at 14 - 30 hertz, or cycles per second, when we are
conscious and active. From 8 - 14 hertz, "alpha" waves
are produced when we are more relaxed. The range from 4 - 8 hertz
are considered "theta" brainwaves, and come with a
deeper meditative or drowsy state. Delta waves (below 5 hertz)
are produced during deep sleep.
Meditation, especially when regular, stimulates these states
of consciousness. You can get into the relaxing alpha state quickly
with practice, for example. The good news, if you don't want
to practice your meditation too much, is that you can also get
into an "alpha state" quickly with music which is embedded
with certain beats and sounds, usually called "binaural
beats." Proven decades ago, this is the basis for the newest
brainwave entrainment technologies. When you listen with headphones
these audio products take you down into a relaxing brainwave
pattern with no effort on your part.
So you may want to spend a little more money and get true
brainwave entrainment. The CDs or MP3s that use this technology
generally have pleasant music for a background (or the sounds
of waves or rain or birds). For the best of this kind of audio
product you'll find my recommendations in the side panel to the