15 Sound Healing Instruments for Therapy and Relaxation

Sound healing is a type of therapy where you use sound as a tool for calming and relaxation. Many different techniques can be used, but all of them revolve around using sound waves to affect your neurological components.

Sound healing can be used as a type of therapy that is aimed at making the patient calmer and happier. This can also ease stress, as it promotes a meditative mindset.

Important note: This article is not a substitute for medical advice and only serves to help you understand what instruments are used in sound healing. If in doubt, speak to a doctor or qualified therapist.

There are many different ways in which you can use sound therapy to help somebody. Of course, that means that there are many sound healings instruments out there.

In this article, we’re going to present to you some of the most commonly used sound healing instruments out there, which are proven to help when used properly.

1. The Human Voice

Even though it’s often neglected as an instrument, the human voice is our most versatile instrument. We’re so used to using it that we often forget how powerful it can be.

Many of us know somebody that has a soothing voice. When we hear such people talk, we feel secure and calm. That’s exactly a type of effect sound therapy (just on a very basic level) can have. Also, a lot of sound healing methods use a combination of voice and instruments in their therapy when they try to help their patients.

2. Tuning Forks

Using the vibrating feel of tuning forks has been a long-used practice around the world.

Essentially, practitioners place tuning forks tuned to different notes that, when played, produce a vibration at an exact wavelength.

This is a great ASMR video showing what a tuning fork sounds like. Headphones are recommended. Note, this is not the same tuning fork like the one linked in this article.

Usually, these are pre-tuned to 128 kHz, 256, or 512 kHz. When played, these forks are often placed on specific spots of your body.

3. Drums

Many different types of drums have a place in sound therapy

You can also use different types of bongos, djembe, ocean drums, buffalo drums, etc. Usually, these are used in drum circles or in solo therapy, whereby by playing the drums you release your stress and calm yourself.

Percussion instruments were one of the earliest instruments in humanity, and rhythmic playing of drums can bring a great calming and meditative effect.

4. Tongue Drums

Tongue drums are amazing overtone instruments, similar to handpans.

Often mistaken for 'hang drums' or 'handpans', steel tongue drums are often smaller and much cheaper instruments. They work off a very similar principle and are each tuned to a particular scale. You can hit these in any order and they will sound nice in key.

These are quite versatile, because hitting a tongue drum in different velocities can get quite a different sound. Hitting it lightly with a finger can make it sound quite muffled, but larger hits will make the whole drum resonate, with great-sounding overtones.

5. Harmony Balls

A classic east-Asian tool for meditation and stress relief.

Harmony balls have an almost angelic sound that they produce when shaken. You can rub them together to create subtle tones and movement, or you can bounce them together to create sounds with a greater velocity that sound like subtle bells.

6. Tibetan Singing Bowls

One of the most famous sound therapy instruments.

Tibetan singing bowls are what most people think of when they hear the words sound healing. Used for centuries by Tibetan monks, these bowls create beautiful, soothing sounds. They are usually used in meditation, as a helping hand to get you into the meditative state.

Here is a great video showing some amazing Tibetan singing bowls. These are not the same as the one pictured above, but they will give you an idea of the great depth of sound and vibrations that can be created when playing them.

7. Crystal Singing Bowls

Crystal singing bowls are used to the same effect as Tibetan bowls.

The only difference is that these are made out of crystal, while Tibetan are made out of metal. They are often not that expensive and can be used in a variety of different things, from yoga, meditation sessions to all kinds of sound healing therapies.

8. Ghanta and Dorje

An instrument with a deep rooting in the Buddhist tradition.

Another Tibetan product, ghantas, and dorjes are usually used together, even though they are two separate instruments.

Ghanta is a bell with a handle. Dorje on the other side is small pendants, that go together with the bell in a set.

9. Gongs

Gongs are also a piece of Asian tradition that have found their way to the modern western world.

They come in all shapes and sizes and have been used for meditation and similar techniques for thousands of years. You can get them from the small ones to the massive ones and in different tuning and sound.

10. Crystal Singing Pyramids

These are essentially hollow pyramids made out of crystal.

They are tuned to a specific wavelength and used in different types of sound therapy or meditation. They are similar to the triangles in a way that you hit them and they produce a note which lasts for a very long time.

11. Tingshas

Tingsha bells are another Tibetan instrument that is most commonly used together with singing bowls, ghanta, and Dorje bells.

They come in pairs, connected by a piece of thread, and then make the sounds when you hit them on one another. They have many uses in yoga classes and all kinds of meditation and sound therapies.

They also make a cool addition to your household just as a decorative item as well.

12. Shakers

One of the oldest instruments in the world.

There are tons of different shakers out there, from small egg-like ones to the larger shakes and they all produce a different sound.

Even though they are usually disregarded as an instrument, they are widely used in music therapy. Because they are so easy to play, there is no need for learning or getting to know them better, but you can just sit down, relax and join the fun of playing in a sound therapy session.

13. Chimes

Another very well-known instrument.

They consist of different sized metal (glass, wooden…) rods which all produce different pitched sounds but when played together they play angelic heavenly tunes.

There are different versions of chimes, as you probably know wind chimes that hang on people's porches. There are also chime bars, which are more of an instrument, which can be played with a mallet.

They are used in meditation as they have a soothing, calming sound that will help you relax and focus on what matters the most.

14. Pan Flute

If you haven't heard of Pan Flutes then you have seriously missed out on some beautiful sounds. The Pan Flute is an amazing-sounding and tranquil instrument that relaxes the mind and body.

Apart from healing sound, this instrument is incredibly used in music and a different variety of genres.

It's also a very affordable instrument to purchase, you would be surprised by the sound properties this particular instrument possesses.

15. Hammered Dulcimer

Don't be surprised if you do not recognize this instrument, as it's an incredibly rare but beautiful one nonetheless.

The Hammered Dulcimer is like an open harp or piano that produces wonderful sounds that can be used for relaxing and even healing purposes.

It is frequently used for therapies when it relieves the symptoms of stress and anxiety. Granted, it is a pricey instrument but considering its properties, it is still not a lot!


When it comes to healing instruments, or healing properties so to speak, multiple ones fit this description. As you can see from the above list, there are quite a few, and definitely, some that you have not heard of apart from now.

This list comprises a variety of instruments that are used for therapeutic purposes and have healing effects on the body and mind. Enjoy them and thank you for reading!

Brian Clark

Brian Clark

I’ve been a writer with Musician Wave for six years, turning my 17-year journey as a multi-instrumentalist and music producer into insightful news, tutorials, reviews, and features.

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