Health Care İndustry

Health Care İndustry

This headband reads your brain waves to help you meditate — here's what happened when we tried it

This headband reads your brainwaves and serves as your 'personal meditation assistant.'


This headband reads your brainwaves and serves as your 'personal meditation assistant.'

The new Muse 2 wearable sells for just shy of $250 and is billed as a 'personal meditation assistant.'

The company's original device, which took more than a decade to produce, was released in 2014. Since then, Interaxon says it has sold more of these brain-sensing devices than "any other system in history," and it has "hundreds of thousands" of users.

Olivia Newton-John in that infamous "Physical" video

At that point, we were ready to start a two-minute meditation. I had a few options for sounds to listen to while meditating. The Muse team selected the one with birds and rain. It sounded a bit like the middle of a rainforest.

I don't regularly meditate these days, but I was reminded why I should. I felt a lot calmer after a few deep breaths. I heard the sound of rain in the background, which got louder when my mind jumped to an errand I needed to run after work (the louder the rain, Muse told me, the busier the mind). I pushed those thoughts away, concentrated on my breath, and after a few seconds, I was rewarded with the sound of a chirping bird (that meant, apparently, that I'd sufficiently calmed down).

My only complaint: I personally found the sounds distracting, and I tended to fixate on them at times rather than on my breath.

The team behind Muse also created a feature with the new Muse for users to "out-meditate" their friends and co-workers.

In the end, Viskontas gave the Muse, and other devices in the category, a mixed review. She noted that it measures brain waves, which only tells one part of the story about how the brain works.

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25 August 2019, Sunday News

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