Sleep Music: Does It Help You Sleep Better?
When I was a baby, my dad used to tell me that I would toss and turn until they played classical music for me - Vivaldi - and then I would fall right asleep.
I did this off and on through middle school and then fell off for a few years.
Now, sleep music has made a return - with a ton of free resources and tracks - from sleep apps to YouTube, pandora, whispering radio or Spotify playlists - there’s no end of sleep music to help you get to sleep and get some amazing rest.
So what is sleep music, how does it work specifically and what tracks should you use to fall asleep?
Let’s dive in:
The Benefits of Sleep Music
Deep sleep is often signaled by delta brain waves. Oftentimes, slow, classical music can help introduce delta waves and induce deep sleep.
Most people consider delta waves transitional between light and deep sleep.
Musical tracks ranging around the 60bpm speed seem to do the best as it’s the same speed as many people’s resting heart rate - which may give your body a ‘pace’ to aim and match.
Some studies have found that adding sleep music to an evening routine can decrease your time to sleep nearly 4-5x!
It can also help you improve sleep efficiency - which means you’re moving into deeper rest states much faster.
Our 5 Favorite Sleep Music Tracks
If you’re looking to dip your toes into adding music in your sleep routine, here’s some of our favorite places to start.
Impossible Sleep Playlist
We’ve put together a custom sleep playlist for you if you want to knock out and get to sleep - here’s the best way to do it - so you can rest up, recover harder and then get up the next morning and get after it.
→ Impossible Sleep Playlist on Spotify
Nature tracks are one of the best choices out there for sleep inducing music.
I’m partial to the sounds of rain on a tin roof or just the ocean, but there’s a wide variety to choose from if you want to dive in. With some of the tracks, it’s almost a throwback to the primal times when y you’d fall asleep in a forest - with the wildlife lulling you to sleep.
We recommend you start here.
The sleep music that I got hooked on as a toddler and went back to in high school is high on the list of tracks to listen to.
They’re calming, peaceful and - well - classic. While the actual effectiveness may vary based on song and composer, in general - piano-focused classical is going to be a good choice to help you wind down and take your chill pill.
→ Whispering Radio is a good start
Delta Wave Tracks
There’s a whole slew of tracks called “delta wave” tracks. These are songs designed to help you get into delta wave sleep as soon as possible. While most of these are random YouTube videos and can be relaxing, these are a bit harder to vet so here’s two of our favorites.
There’s a wide variety of binaural beat generators out there that range in frequency and tone. It’s tough to nail one done, but if you find a good binaural beats generator - sometimes they will do the trick!
How to Incorporate Sleep Music into Your Recovery Routine
If you’re looking to add sleep music into yoru recovery routine:
- Black out your curtains. Keep your room dark before bed time.
- Minimize blue light before bed times.
- Use Impossible Sleep 20-30 minutes before bed and feel free to start the music during this.
- Keep your room cool. Your body will sleep deeper at cooler temperatures.
- If you need additional help falling asleep - try out a weighted blanket.
Avoid These Mistakes With Sleep Music
Have it auto-turn off, sleep music is helpful for getting you to sleep, but less necessary to keep you asleep.
Use a speaker but avoid using headphones or earbuds. These could possibly damage your hearing over time.
Try to keep your devices on airplane mode. There’s no need for it to be on close to your head all night.
Be wary of volume. You don’t need to subject your ears to the extra decibels for 8 extra hours at a blasting volume. Take a chill pill.
Avoid audio with lyrics. Your brain may want to pattern match and actually spike brain activity rather than winding down.
More sleep resources + articles
For more sleep resources and articles, check out these