15 Best Meditation Tools & Aids You Need In 2020

What are the best meditation tools and equipment you have ever used? There is excellent equipment available to help us meditate, from Zen chairs to Buddhist malas, to modern aids like Muse Headband.

As a mindfulness instructor, I’ve used all sorts of meditation equipment over the years.  And in this list, I will show you my absolute favourite aids for meditation. 

 

15 Types Of Meditation Tools To Buy 


Looking for a gift? See my list of the best gifts for Buddhists.

1. A Buddhist Mala (Yoga Beads)

buddhist mala

The number one best meditation tool to buy is a Buddhist mala, which are also called yoga beads.

Just take a look at these beautiful malas /prayer beads. Aren’t they glorious?

Malas are prayer beads that are used for counting breaths and Japa (mantra recitations). They are one of the most important Buddhist aids to buy.

Ideally, a mala will have 108 beads. As we practice, we count the beads from 1 to 108 so we know how many breaths we have taken (or how many timed we have recited a mantra).

Malas come in varying sizes and there is a wide variety of materials to choose from.

My personal choice is always to go with coral because I like the energy that coral has. And black always looks best on me. So that would be my choice.

What malas do you like? (Leave a comment).

So, why is a mala one of the best meditation tools?

  • Firstly, you’re wearing it, so it reminds you to practice.
  • It also helps you to count breaths, which is actually better than having a timer.
  • And the best ones look beautiful.

In my opinion, this is the best meditation equipment you can buy. Essential.

2.  Chairs  

meditation chair

“When sitting, sit”. So says the old Zen proverb.

That proverb basically means to sit still, not fidget, and to be mindful of sitting.

If you want to sit still and not fidget, then the best meditation equipment is a good chair to sit on.

The best chairs don’t just support your back, they actually help you meditate because they support your posture, which is essential for focus.

As someone who spends a lot of time sitting on rocks doing Vipassana, I’m always aware of the difference a comfortable chair can make.

Check out our collection of the best chairs.

3. A Comfy Cushion 

meditation cushion

A good cushion can be used either with a chair or as a standalone product.

I remember when I used to sit on the floor to meditate. I would fidget all the time. It was very difficult to find the right stillness of body. And if the body is not still the mind will not be either.

That’s why a cushion is one of the best meditation tools. It aids by providing more comfort and by promoting good posture. It’s also one of the best items of meditation equipment to take on a retreat or whenever you travel.

Plus, a great cushion looks beautiful in your Zen room.

3. A Tibetan Singing Bowl  

tibetan singing bowl

My favourite musical equipment has to be a Tibetan Singing Bowl.

Tibetan Singing Bowls are so much more than just musical instruments. They have been scientifically proven to put our brains into more restful states. And they help us meditate.

These are one of the best Buddhist meditation tools because of the powerful effect they have on the mind.

Take a quick look at my guide to Tibetan Singing Bowls, which I wrote to explain the power and beauty of these instruments.

I am totally in love with my own Tibetan Singing Bowl. It’s a truly cherished possession.

5. Mindfulness Apps / Zen Apps

meditation apps

There are so many Android / iOS apps on the market, like Calm or Headspace.

Some apps work as timers. Others offer guided sessions designed to help you relax. However, do bear in mind that there are major limitations of the guided method and it is not a suitable replacement for proper practice.

The sheer variety and versatility of mindfulness apps makes them one of the most essential meditation tools to buy at the moment. And many are even completely free!

What’s your favourite app? Leave a comment and remember to subscribe to our newsletter.

6. A Good Book 

meditation book

Hands up who loves reading? I know I do. And as an instructor, I especially love reading books on the practice [here are the best meditation books of 2020].

7.  Zen Meditation Music 

zen music

Music is much more than pure entertainment. It is a tool for meditation. It helps us to relax and to focus.

Music is specifically composed in order to promote relaxing brainwaves and to calm the mind.

My absolute favourite musician is Deva Premal. She’s a singer with a simply angelic voice. And the music she creates is like pure nectar for the spirit. It’s so relaxing and healing. Truly sensational.

8. Muse Meditation Assistant  

Muse Meditation Assistant

Muse [available on AMAZON] is a truly unique and wonderful mindfulness tool. It’s modern and a little futuristic, but it is definitely a good piece of equipment to buy.

Muse works as a personal assistant. When you put the Muse headband on and start the app it plays relaxing music designed to calm the mind. You can then focus on those sounds.

As you practise, Muse measures whether you’re calm or stressed and uses that information to change the sounds it’s playing. When calm, you hear peaceful sounds, when the mind wanders you hear more intense sounds that remind you to relax. This helps you to be mindful of how you are feeling.

Data is then used to show you how you’re progressing.

This is truly 21st Century mindfulness at its best. It is an aid for meditation to help relax. Highly recommended for anyone who is serious about using technology to enhance their practice. Probably the best modern equipment to buy.

9. Guided Recordings

guided meditation

Guided methods are the easiest way to practice. And although they are massively limited compared to more traditional techniques, they are very helpful for beginners who just want to relax. You can also use these to help with other methods. For instance, you can do a guided session to relax before going on to a more serious method.

If you like Zen with zero effort, you will definitely like guided sessions.

These days there are millions of guided meditations on Youtube, and some of them are truly exceptional.

10. Buddhist Gongs

buddhist gongs 

Another of my favourite musical pieces of meditation equipment: a Buddhist gong.

Gongs look absolutely stunning and they sound divine. Of all the meditation aids out there, this is one of the most impressive to show your friends.

Buddhist gongs are specifically designed to create frequencies that help us meditate by entering the brain into a meditative state. [2]

By simply sitting and listening to a gong you can quickly relax and focus the mind.

My guide to buying meditation gongs shares everything you need to know about these beautiful instruments.

11. Zen Gardens

zen garden

Zen Gardens are actually Japanese Rock Gardens. Many centuries ago, Zen monks began to turn gardening into a mindfulness practice. And the hobby took off from there.

Today there are full-size Zen gardens at temples. Some extremely cool people have them in their own garden, or even indoors. And others have desktop Zen gardens.

Zen gardens are great because:

  1. Creating them is an exercise in mindfulness
  2. We can meditate on them.

12. All The New Mindfulness Tech And Yoga Tech

mindfulnes tech

There is a ton of really great gadgets and devices available today.

The technology industry really has created some of the best meditation equipment we’ve seen in years.

Some of the best meditation aids include:

  • Lights
  • Headbands
  • Headphones
  • Brain sensing technology / software
  • And software

Take a look at the link above for all the best gadgets in 2020.

13. Crystals

crystals

Crystals are some of the most beautiful objects that you can meditate on.  [READ: Best Meditation Crystals For Beginners].

Different types of crystals hold different spiritual properties [3], so it is important to make sure you meditate on the right type of crystal. 

Take a look at the link above for the best crystals available.

14. Games

meditation game

In 2020 we’re seeing the rise of medi-tainment.

One of the most popular types of medi-tainment is video games. Check out these meditative games for examples.

When I’m chilling out I love to play a relaxing game like Flower or Journey (see the link above for more).

These game are relaxing and help us to get into that Zen-state that we all know and love. We are just witnessing the rise of the medi- tainment now, and there are bound to be lots more games in the near future.

15. Altars

meditation altars

Altars and shrines are becoming very popular recently. These are small altars that we sit at to meditate at. These can help because they give us one spiritual space to practice in. For instance, if you create a Buddhist altar with a statue and other items, it will help you to remember the dharma.

Altars can be a place to show reverence for your deity, or you can decorate them with various items that make you feel peaceful and happy.

What makes them such a good aid is that they give you one dedicated space to practice in, so you can have a little spot of the home reserved for your sitting sessions. 

We’ve looked at fifteen of the best meditation tools. These aids can make a huge difference to your practice.

 

My favourite meditation equipment is my mala

My personal best meditation tool has to be my Buddhist mala. This is one of the best Buddhist tools out there. It’s also used in yoga. It’s the first piece of meditation equipment I ever purchased (except for books). And they are one of the original types of equipment used by Buddhists [1]. 

Mine is a beautiful black coral stone mala used to help count breaths or mantra recitations when meditating. Equipment like that can make a big difference.

My mala has travelled with me for ten years and over tens of thousands of miles. It’s been with me at the best of times, like when I returned home in 2014 to visit my family for the first time in years. And it’s been with me at the worst of times, like when my father passed away. By my estimation, I have taken over 394,000 mindful breaths with this mala.

This simple Buddhist tool has helped me to take my practice to a new level. And it has become a deeply personal item to me. The best meditation tools hold far more valuable than the average household object. They are assets and allies in our quest for inner peace.

Having the right products in your home can really help with health, happiness, and spiritual development.

Here are 12 meditation tools that are truly helpful to have in your home.

What is your favourite tool? And what do you love about it?

Leave a comment and remember to subscribe to our newsletter.


Paul Harrison

Paul Harrison is a qualified meditation teacher and writer with more than 15 years experience in meditation and mindfulness. He studied meditation in Oxford, UK, and Hamilton Ontario Canada, and earned his degree at Staffordshire University. Paul has helped thousands of people to discover their true potential through mindfulness, yoga and meditation. You can read his books on Amazon

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Nikhil

    The Blog is damn informative. Got to learn a variety of new meditation techniques. Looking forward to implement your valuable teachings soon…

  2. creativecalmspace

    What a wonderful article. I’ve been using meditation as a tool to help with stress and being more focus throughout the day. I just finished an MBSR(Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction) class and learned so many methods of meditation.

  3. Meditation Montclair

    Hey thanks for sharing such interesting article. I am beginner to practice meditation and joined classes for that at Montclair. Good to know about these tools.

  4. Kaylynne

    My best friend is Buddhist, and he’s going to be moving away soon. I’m trying to think of a thoughtful gift for him. I know he has a mala – should I give him one if he already has one? Is there a reason he might want or use more than one? Do you have any other thoughts or suggestions?

    1. Paul Harrison

      Hi Kaylynne. You could definitely get him a new mala, just make sure it’s a different type of stone to the one he already has.

  5. ron mills

    I use a Butterfly stick as do several of my friends.

  6. Kopal

    Very informative post! Thanks for sharing your experiences and advice.
    I love using singing bowls the most. These are my all time favourite!
    Inscense sticks and diffusers placed alongside a tealight is another calming ritual I follow after returning home from a busy office day.
    I have not tried zen garden yet. Any suggestive patterns to try for a calming mind?

    1. Paul Martin Harrison

      Hi. Thanks for your comment. When creating patterns for a Zen garden just meditate on the process of creating the pattern. Let your consciousness guide you and see what pattern you end up with.

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