Anna Koop

March 11, 2011

Geeking out over meditation — SleepPhones and NatureSpace

Filed under: Personal

My birthday present from my sister Sarah came today last week: SleepPhone Headphones from ThinkGeek. They are everything I hoped for—comfy, not too warm, good sound without blocking too much noise (but you can always ramp up the white noise generator when you *want* to block noise). Perfect for sleeping while away at conferences and might even be good great for sleeping at home.

Okay, since my initial enthusiasm, they have only gotten better. The addition of the NatureSpace iPhone app and a bunch of their tracks—the best relaxation trick since podcasts (if not diaphragmatic breathing).

The thing about the NatureSpace tracks is that they use the stereo sound, not just to route sound to both the headphones, but to make it feel like you’re sitting in the middle of the thunderstorm, or relaxing in front of the campfire (realistic campfire sounds—no mean feat!), or lying on the grass in a mountain meadow.

I’ve been forcing people to listen to the tracks because they’re that awesome. I knew about NatureSpace before, but only having earbuds I couldn’t make it work. Some of the tracks sound fine on speakers, but right at your ears is much better. The addition of soft headphones, so you can lie on your side or leave them on for hours without your ears getting sore, is just fantastic.

I’m listening to thunder tracks and cheerful birdsongs while writing, and for relaxing the campfire, the lake at night (complete with loon call, of course) and the burbling creek (Moosejaw Creek is the proper bubbly one, the others are more of the river/waterfall variety, although awesome if that’s what you want to be imagining).

I must get Joel his own soft headphones, I think. He wasn’t thrilled about them for audiotracks or music, but for nature sounds he’s all over it. My sister has added them to her wishlist too.

I have to add—the headphones look incredibly dorky. So I’m sticking to my earbuds when out and about (also, I love the mike/button on the Apple earbuds). But at home they’re getting tonnes of use. Simple genius!

ETA: I contacted NatureSpace over a little issue (that turned out to be an Apple bug) and they got back to me immediately, with info on how to fix it. How great is that?

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