Yoga instructor and sound therapist Jessica Cross offers something so unique to our Soul Strong roster: sound therapy. Owner, Julie Afsahi, has also begun incorporating sound in classes in the form of playing the gong. These experiences can facilitate deep relaxation, mental clarity and a meditative state among participants. Now, this dynamic teaching duo is even offering a weekend long sound certification retreat. Coming up from September 9th-11th, you can become a certified sound therapist while taking a rejuvenating weekend away in a retreat environment! To dive deeper and learn about all things sound, I asked Jessica and Julie some questions. Check out the interview below!
1. JESSICA, HOW DID YOU GET STARTED IN SOUND THERAPY?
My journey with sound began at a young age. I played several instruments and also trained in dance through college. Sound was a powerful force that allowed me to create and share with others. Once I finished school, I thought I had to leave behind my passions to focus on building a career. I’d soon learn the lesson that things come back around in other forms as yoga and sound entered my life. I was first introduced to sound therapy while in savasana in a class. The teacher began playing a bowl while we rested and I immediately wanted to sit up to see what was making that incredible sound, but I was too relaxed to move! I soon sought out any sound offering and resource I could locate to not only deepen my practice but to share it with others.
2. HOW DOES SOUND THERAPY WORK? AND WHAT ARE SOME OF THE BENEFITS?
It’s science! Sound therapy works through a process called entrainment. The sound practitioner plays a rhythmic sequence, sending out calming sound waves, for our brainwaves to ‘hook’ onto. Our brainwaves begin to match the same frequency and pace of the sound waves. The process is similar to two clock pendulums matching speeds, but on a biological level. Sound provides a tool for the mind to utilize to drop into a meditative state quickly and at times, more deeply, than with silence alone.
The beauty is, every sound experience is different and unique to the individual. Participants may feel a deep sense of calm and clarity after a sound experience. Some will fall into a deep sleep minutes into the practice and wake as if they’ve had a nights worth of rest. And the best part is that you’ll get exactly what you need from that practice in that moment, without having to do or be anything but on your mat.
3. WHY DOES SOUL STRONG HAVE SO MANY SOUND OFFERINGS?
Jessica Cross brought sound healing to Soul Strong Yoga years ago when we first opened. Who knew Round Rock would become a hub of sound healing the area? Many Soul Strongers love sound. It’s deeply restorative and calming. Sometimes it’s just too hard to calm our thoughts with quiet meditation and yoga, and we need more tools to lessen stress, and sound can be a very therapeutic tool for many. We are so honored for Jessica Cross to provide so many sound sessions through our studio – we have people who drive in from faraway places just to catch a sound bath with her.
4. WHY A RETREAT CERTIFICATION?
With all that we have been through, it seemed like the right decision. As a collective, we seem to appreciate time away from our daily routines more than ever. We wanted to be able to spoil our attendees with yoga, mindfulness, and community all while earning a really beautiful certification in sound. The sound certification will be such a wonderful asset to have, but at the same time, we wanted the experience in earning the certification to be transformative and nourishing.
You’ve heard it here, folks! The benefits of sound therapy are deep, and the time is now to sign up for the retreat certification to become a certified sound therapist! I hope you enjoyed this interview with two spectacular teachers. Learn more about their upcoming offering HERE.