13 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. There are many different techniques that 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 very soothing and calming 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 as 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 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 from '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 basically hit these in any order and they will sound nicely 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 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 which 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 which will help you relax and focus on what matters the most.


We hope that this article has helped you with getting to know more about sound healing instruments which can be used. Of course, there are many more, but these are the most popular and best-known ones.

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