Gong and Sound Baths – The Sound of the Summer?

Number of people attending gong bath events more than doubles on Eventbrite as the UK bathes in the healing vibrations of sound to relax and meditate

Gong and sound baths – enjoyed by celebrities and royalty such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Charlize Theron, Robert Down Jr and Meghan Markle– could provide the sound of the summer if the latest event data is anything to go by.

As the UK emerges from lockdown, attendance to gong bath sessions on ticketing and events platform, Eventbrite – where participants are immersed in the vibrations of instruments – is growing fast and has more than doubled (> 115%) from the first quarter of 2019 to the first quarter in 2022. The number of gong baths on Eventbrite has also nearly doubled, growing by more than 80% (again comparing Q1/2019 with Q1/2022).

In March 2022, Eventbrite saw its highest number of gong bath events and attendees in three years, and their creators believe the shamanic healing tool will only continue to grow in popularity as word spreads of its many benefits.

A gong bath is a type of inactive meditation where participants bathe in the ‘healing vibrations of sound’. The vibration of the gongs or other shamanic tools are said to be absorbed throughout the body and to have a transformational effect on the body, mind and spirit. Alleged benefits include rejuvenating the body and bringing an overall sense of relaxation that can help reduce stress, pain and anxiety as well as improve sleep, memory and creativity.

Gill Gosling, founder of Dragonfly Gong Yoga runs gong workshops, baths and classes in the North East of England; she has seen a marked increase in interest following the pandemic and believes she could fill her classes twice over if she had the capacity.

She said: “As we’ve come out of lockdown, people have been mentally, physically and emotionally exhausted and gong baths have been a way of very quickly taking themselves into a deep state of complete bliss and relaxation. Attendees can be themselves, breathe deeply and tune into their own hearts – it’s what they’ve been crying out for.

“In a time when we’re bombarded with bad news in the media, too much screen time and work overload, gong sound baths provide a nourishing place where we can all come together. I take classes in parks, on beaches and in theatres and work with retreats and yoga classes. However, the healing powers of sound are now being recognised in healthcare settings and I believe we’ll start seeing even more classes being made available for workers, particularly those in the NHS.”

Carlo Volpi, founder of Soundstasis, runs six gong bath events a month at Shaftesbury Hall in London and has seen many new attendees post lockdown. He explains: “About a year ago, around 50% of people attending my sessions were new to gong baths. I think they were craving a way of being together in a relatively safe space and looking after their mental health following such long periods of social isolation.

“In my day job, I work as a designer and a university lecturer in fashion. Over the past couple of years, many people have become interested in anything to do with health and wellbeing, and this is reflected in a change of lifestyles and habits in general. Most people are approaching these ancient healing practices with a curious scientific mindset, they want to know how everything works. I find this really interesting as science and healing are finally coming back together again”

Eventbrite’s Sebastian Boppert said: “We’ve seen all kinds of new mindfulness events pop up on Eventbrite after the pandemic. Just like forest baths or puppy yoga sessions, gong and sound baths seem to offer a welcome respite after two years of bad news, helping attendees relax and take care of their mental health.”

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