I remember hearing about binaural beats when the concept was still new and thinking it was too good to be true – how could simple sound waves induce altered states of consciousness and shift brainwave states?
Nowadays there are endless binaural beats all over the internet from free to paid. It would take a lifetime to get through all of the binaural beats on YouTube alone, with brainwave entertainment that claims to help with everything from sleep to astral projection.
In this article I’m going to go over the best way to use binaural beats so that you get the most out of them, as well as some recommendations based on the ones I have used.
Do Binaural Beats Actually Work?
I’m sure you’ve been wondering: do binaural beats actually work? Binaural beats technology works in that it can help you induce different brainwave states, the other claims are questionable.
Binaural beats work by playing two different tones in your ears. For example if 10 Hz is played in one ear and 100 Hz is played in the other, your brain compensated and creates a tone of 90 Hz.
Each Hz range corresponds with a different type of brainwave state. As we go about our day to day life most of us are in the beta brainwave state. This state is perfect when you have to be alert and paying attention.
Along with putting you into certain brainwave states binaural beats facilitate a state where you can direct your own focus more easily. The binaural beats help you get halfway to the goal but your intention is what does the rest of the work.
Just as we might play a certain genre of music to get us into a specific mood, brainwave entertainment works the same way. For example, the binaural beats themselves cannot heal your chakras, but they do bring you to a brainwave state where you can direct your focus to that objective.
The Different Brainwave States
To understand how binaural beats work you need to have a basic grasp of the different brainwave states and what each is used for.
Beta brainwaves are between 14-30 Hz. This is the brainwave state I mentioned above that most of us are within during day to day life. We are in this state when we are alert and focusing our attention on a task.
Recommended Track: Super Brain Power
Alpha brainwaves are between 9-13 Hz. We experience an alpha state during a light meditation, when we are focused creatively and just before drifting off to sleep.
Recommended Track: Anxiety Release
Theta brainwaves are between 4-8 Hz. We commonly experience this state when we are creatively absorbed, in deep meditations and during dreams. These brainwaves also present themselves when we doing a task on autopilot.
Recommended Track: Earth Vibration (432Hz)
Delta brainwaves are between 0-4 Hz. We experience these brainwaves when we are deep in sleep and sometimes during dreams.
Recommended Track: Deep Sleep
Gamma brainwaves are between 32-100 Hz, these are the fastest brainwaves that we can currently measure. We experience gamma brainwaves during moments of transcendence, fast information processing and higher states of consciousness. This state is commonly observed in longtime meditators and Buddhist Monks.
What Are the Best Binaural Beats?
I have probably used dozens of different binaural beats since being introduced to this technology. Some were paid and others I found on YouTube, some worked great and others just left me with a bit of a headache.
In general I’ve found the selection of binaural beats has grown in quality and length. You can find a lot of high quality binaural beats just by browsing YouTube.
When looking for good quality binaural beats on YouTube I like to check out the channel they originate from and pay attention to the comments too.
Check if the channel has a long history of putting out binaural beats and what their reputation is like. See what other people are saying and if the track worked well for them.
How to Use Binaural Beats Effectively
So you’ve found a great track and you’re now ready to put it to use, but what is the most effective way to listen to binaural beats?
Although I have used earphones to play binaural beats and had great success with it, headphones specifically noise canceling ones are the best. These enable you to solely focus on the track itself and block out any external distractions.
Binaural beats do not work on a speaker as the two tones have to be processed by different sides of the brain which can only be done through earphones or headphones.
Binaural beats work best when you are physically relaxed beforehand. Although binaural beats will help calm the mind, you still must prep the body and get it relaxed so you are not distracted by itches and tense muscles.
I like to do some light stretching before any meditation or listening to a meditation track, you can also take a warm bath to ease muscle tension.
Get into a comfortable position or lay down with your head slightly elevated (this will prevent you falling asleep by accident). Focus on your breath for a few minutes and release any lingering tension from your body.
Play your chosen track through headphones or earphones and relax into the music. Keeping your focus will be a lot easier when you have music to focus on.
After ten to fifteen minutes you should start to feel a physical change in your body. It’s usual to feel lighter or heavier (depending on the track you are playing) and you might lose track of what you’re doing.
When you first switch brainwave states like this it can be easy to lose focus with all the new sensations you are feeling. Keep your attention on the music and sink as deep into it as you can.
The best way to use binaural beats for my experience is to see them as a stepping stone. Binaural beats help beginners to reach brainwave states that can be difficult to induce without practice.
Binaural beats helped me when I was just getting started and aided me reaching my first astral projection but over time I was able to drop into that state easily just by the memory of how it felt.
Once you have a feel for how the experience feels you can more easily drop into these relaxed states by the memory of how they feel. Rather than using binaural beats as a crutch use them to speed up your progress.
Over time you’ll use binaural beats less and less as you learn to induce these states naturally through a practice of meditation.
What is your experience with binaural beats?