Question: My physio suggested was relaxation techniques (eg relaxation tapes). I must admit my instinctive reaction is to harrumph and dismiss all this as new-age mumbo-jumbo i.e. whale noises are not my usual taste in music, and pan pipes are more likely to enrage me than relax me. If anyone has any feedback/suggestions about this, they will be gratefully received.

 Answer 1: I haven’t tried tapes like that I do though know what you mean the tapes I tried have music and voice taking you through relaxation or creative visualization or whatever. If you’ve already taken classes you’re likely to think, as I do, “Oh shut up and let me go to sleep”!
I suggest classes without music or tapes of your favorite gentle music. Research shows that listening to Bach produces the same kind of brain-wave relaxation as meditation. I use autogenic training and creative visualization bio monitored meditation all Eastern inspired though now I mainly just use basic mind-over-matter. None of this stuff is New Age.

Answer 2: Avoid the more physical techniques unless you have a well qualified teacher. Also avoid the heavy meditation ones. A creative visualization tape or a good music one is your kind of music, as long as it’s calm!  Let’s hope it stays cool for you.

Answer 3 : There’s a good book that deals with quite a variety of techniques. It’s called the Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook by Martha Davis, PhD, Elizabeth Robbins Eshelman M.S.W., and Matthew McKay, Ph.D. These are techniques you can do on your own. In terms of music, you should use whatever you find relaxing. I’m very sensitive to sound, certain tones, and certain voices so I understand where you’re coming from in terms of things that work in the opposite direction. While I’m willing to try just about anything, I’m not convinced any of the specialized (brain wave, subliminal, guided visualization, etc) tapes I’ve tried thus far work any better than something I control myself.


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