Over the past few years, brainwave entrainment products have made a great rise in popularity, reaching more people than ever before and peaking their interest with the many benefits ensured. We now have a continually expanding pool of options to choose from, as well as more information and scientific research on the subject than in the past. Brainwave Entrainment audios, and the products being made with this technology are literally changing the game in the personal development field, and have become one of the largest catalysts in our recent evolution as a human race. In fact, these audios may be one of the main contributing factors in unlocking the potential to tap into the untouched 98% of our brains that we are currently not using.
Meditation enhancement: There are several companies that sell brainwave entrainment sessions specifically designed to enhance meditation. The sounds provide a stimuli to focus on during the meditation, and the brain waves naturally shift towards the frequency provided. Whether meditation is actually enhanced by brainwave entrainment is a subject of debate. However, advanced meditators commonly experience brainwave synchronization – which the right and left hemispheres display the same frequency brain waves. While there are scientific benefits of meditation, it is unclear as to whether they are enhanced, hindered, or unaffected by adjunctive brainwave entrainment.
Attention and learning ability has been suggested to improve as a result of beta stimulation protocols. Research has shown that beta waves tend to be deficient among those who have learning disabilities and/or attention deficits. Other research with photic stimulation determined that stimulating 14 Hz and alternating it with 22 Hz over several sessions produced significant GPA improvements.
A study published in Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology by Paul Williams and Michael West in 1975 examined the brainwave states of people experienced in meditation while using photic stimulation, and another study by Leonard, Telch, and Harrington in 1999 examined the successful use of brainwave entrainment techniques for attaining meditative states in subjects.
One can also learn to control and slow down their brain waves through various neurofeedback technologies such as electroencephalograph (EEG), galvanic skin response (GSR), and heart, pulse and breath rate monitors. These devices measure stress and relaxation parameters and then "play" back the signals to the user so they can use the signals as a beacon to guide and "steer" themselves into a relaxed state. This takes some time, work and discipline but is much quicker than learning meditation.
What I really like about iAwake is their standalone offerings. They produce quite a few audio pieces that are geared toward specific brainwave targets and desired results. These individual products aren't progression - based (you can listen to whatever tracks you want whenever you want), so there's no lengthy investment of your time involved. Also they're way cheaper (around $30-$50 depending on the product). In addition to manipulating brainwaves with sound, they pride themselves on their patented Biofield tech (look them up for more info).
The Alpha waves have for years been the most popular frequencies to use during Brainwave Entrainment. They have the ability to enhance light relaxation as well as positive thinking and they are often utilized for enhancing what is known as ‘super learning ability’. The Beta waves have a frequency of 13-25 Hz and they assist in enhancing a standard state of alertness. In addition, they are an effective remedy for both stress and anxiety.
So I began to look at other instances in which the nervous system is being stimulated on a daily basis and discovered that sports science has a lot to teach us about this. Whether you are practicing yoga, meditation, using brainwave entrainment, or working out, it’s all pushing the nervous system. One of the things that sports science teaches us is that the nervous system waxes and wanes like a sine wave in its capacity to recover from, and grow from, the stimulation we give it every day. Static levels of stimulation, where you’re getting the same smack every day, day in and day out, do not allow for the fact that there are times when the nervous system is at its peak to handle the stimulation, and there are other times when the nervous system is in its trough, or valley period, when it is harder for it to recover from stimulation.
ADHD: In 1997, various researchers conducted a study testing whether children with ADHD (attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder) would benefit from audio-visual entrainment in a school setting. The researchers entrained a small sample of 34 students from 2 different schools. They were given audio-visual entrainment for a period of 1 month and 3 weeks at various times throughout the school day.
Alpha (12hz – 8hz) – Awake, but deeply relaxed. Simply closing your eyes will produce alpha brainwaves. This category is associated with daydreaming, visualization, imagination, light meditation. Brainwave expert Anna Wise called the alpha range the bridge between beta and theta. (More information can be found in Wise’ book The High-Performance Mind)
Only 4 of the participants reported no change as a result of the stimulation. Four years later in a study (1989) by Anderson analyzed LED photic stimulation for the treatment of headaches. There were 60 patients included in the study which involved Variable Frequency Photo-stimulation (VFP) with specialized goggles that contained light-emitting diodes.
Hi Sahil, it’s hard for me to speak about other people’s tracks and videos, as I don’t know how they created them either. If you’re interested in a particular track/video and unsure about it, try asking the creator a question or two about the track, what frequencies were used and for how long, what software they used etc. Then make your own judgement based on how they reply to you. Jason
Yes, brainwave entrainment is based upon science. It has been scientifically proven to work, and to benefit the brain in all kinds of amazing ways. Yes people use things like EEG machines to read how it works on the brain. BUT, this does not mean it is overly complicated, and it does not mean that you have to be overly techy or scientific, or have any experience in neurology at all to create a brainwave entrainment audio or understand how it works.
As somewhat of a modern mystic, I have studied altered states of consciousness, but due to my monkey mind, I have only been able to experience them to a very minor degree. I have tried so many methods of meditation to little avail. But I became aware that I would not be able to progress in my spiritual life if I could not achieve at least a modicum of success in meditation.
Your brain operates at certain levels of activity – the normal waking, active Beta, the meditative Alpha, the asleep-and-dreaming or deep meditative Theta, and the deep sleep/unconscious Delta. Beta is characterized by one thing we all want to get away from – stress.But that brainwave state has its place. It’s the action mode, and that’s the way it should be! If we’re not alert when we’re awake, bad things can happen, right?
Specific tones that resonate at certain frequencies are created and embedded within the acoustic architecture of the original waveform. Your brainwaves latch onto these embedded carrier frequencies and attune themselves to the same vibratory rate. Brainwave entrainment now occurs that is similar to binaural beats yet there is no need for headphones to deliver these entrainment effects.
Both brainwave entrainment and neurofeedback deal with brainwaves, but the similarity stops there. Entrainment pushes your whole brain into a pre-determined state, while neurofeedback teaches you how to move specific parts of your brain on your own. It is the differeence between forcing the brain into a given position, and skills building so you can move it there yourself.