You have decided you are ready to begin a mindfulness or meditation practice. Now, you just need to know what is the best tool to use to aide you in this endeavor. There are many nice mediation/mindfulness apps out there to enjoy today. With so many apps like Calm, Headspace, Insight Timer, Ten Percent Happier and Balance to name just a few, how do you choose? The following is a quick overview of the Calm vs Headspace apps to help you make up your mind between these two services. Also, don’t miss the frequently asked questions on both apps at the bottom of this post to really make your decision a no-brainer.
Calm vs Headspace – An Overview of Each Program
The Calm app is a mindfulness app that has many different uses. The overall look of the app is nature oriented with peaceful and beautiful videos. There is calming music available as well. One of my favorite features is the Daily Calm. Each Daily Calm revolves around a theme and is a set minutes long guided meditation. The Daily Calm ends each session with a quote you can focus your thoughts around for the day which is a nice take away.
If your kids need help with calming themselves down at the end of the day or with anxiety, sleep problems, etc, Calm has programs that will work for them as well. From sleep stories to help them get to sleep at night to guided meditations to calm their nerves during times of stress, you will find plenty of material to use.
The Calm Masterclass series are “exclusive classes from world renowned mindfulness experts”. They include courses ranging in length of time from 15 minutes mini-modules for multi-part courses to hour long classes. Each class goes into a theme in depth with wisdom from an expert in that field.
Calm has breathing exercises where you can set a timer to begin and end your practice. They also have a breathing “bubble” to help you with your inhale and exhale length for your breathing. This can be so helpful to people who unconsciously hold their breath or don’t take deep enough breaths throughout the day. The amount of calm you will feel after completing a series can be profound if you are used to not breathing properly.
There are many beautiful scenes from nature you can pick from to use as your background. They include video with sound that Calm calls “soundscapes”..
For the Body
The Calm body series includes stretches for various parts of the day to either begin or end your day. They range in length from 5 minutes to 15 minutes and can be used in tandem with your regular exercise program.
If you have any problems falling asleep or staying asleep, here is a plethora of options to aide you. There are soundscapes that also include options like White Noise, Fan sounds, etc. As someone who needs to have a fan to listen to at night, this is helpful when away from home.
The best part of Calm for Sleep is the bedtime stories of famous works and ones you have never heard of before. The stories are narrated by famous people like Matthew McConaughey, Stephen Fry, Bob Ross, Bindi Irwin, Lucy Liu, Joanna Lumley and more.
Many different options to pick from based on what you would like to work on as well. Sleep, Anxiety, Stress, Inner Peace, Relationships, Personal Growth, etc. They also have some meditations geared towards beginners.
Cost of calm
The cost for Calm is $59.99 a year or $12.99 a month. However, you can try it out for free for 7 days to get a feel for whether you like it or not. You can find out more about the Calm app here.
Headspace is a meditation and sleep subscription service. The overall look of Headspace is of animations and videos rather than photographs.
There are new meditations every day to help you wakeup and begin your day on a good note.
The mindful moments series has you focus on something you love. There was one recently that showed a women making pottery and she discussed what she loved about her job. The video of watching her make a piece of pottery was very relaxing.
Basics of Meditation
You can choose whether you would like to have a male or female voice. You can do a body scan and focus your attention on your breathing.
Headspace for Sleep includes soundscapes with video and music, sleep music and radio based on your mood, sleep wind down and night time SOS for sleep troubles.
Headspace for Movement has sections on Get Moving, Quick Workouts, Mindful Cardio, how to get in a performance mindset, and meditations for your rest day of exercise. Headspace Plus include actual cardio and fitness workouts that are fitness workouts with some mindfulness woven in with the emphasis on workouts.
By Objective and Intention
There are meditations for those who want to relax or work on anger. If you have stress and anxiety there is a section specifically for you. They have sections for personal growth topics too.
Headspace includes a section just for kids as well.
For those just beginning a mindfulness or meditation practice, Headspace has sessions on the basics that last about ten minutes. They follow up on that with more in depth techniques in the two following courses.
Cost for headspace
The cost for Headspace is $69.99 annual payment or $5.99/month with ongoing commitment, you can try your first 14 days for free. You can also test drive it without a long time commitment for $12,99 month where your first 7 days are free. You can find out more about the Headspace app here.
Frequently Asked Questions about calm vs headspace
What’s better Calm or Headspace?
This is largely a matter of personal preference. They are both very nice programs with lots of bells and whistles to enjoy. There are probably more programs to go through than most people have time to really use. My personal preference is probably Calm, just because I like the look of nature scenes. Someone else might prefer the animations in Headspace to view. There isn’t a wrong or right answer here.
Is it worth paying for Calm or Headspace?
Yes. First, try the free versions of each to make sure it is something you are interested in paying for long-term. Once you have exhausted your free version, only you can decide if it is worth it to you to pay for the service. Personally, at $5 a month on average or $1.25 a week, this is a very inexpensive option to be able to sleep well, calm any anxiety you may have, and relax each day.
How much do Calm and Headspace cost?
Currently it costs $59.99 a year for Calm and $69.99 a year for Headspace.
Can you use Calm or Headspace to help you sleep?
Of course! Both versions have endless options to help you sleep. From calming you down before bed to background noises to play to help you sleep. Sleep stories are there for you or your child to use as well to train your brain it is time to relax and prepare for sleep. Guided meditations before bed to calm you are also very useful for putting you in the right frame of mind for sleep.
How are Calm and Headspace used to help with anxiety?
There are many ways you can use either app to help with anxiety. You can use it to calm down before you sleep. Meditation and breathing exercises can calm your nerves almost immediately in most situations. Both apps can also teach you new methods of coping with your stress.
What can you get for free from Calm and Headspace?
Both versions will give you a one week trial of their service for free. You can access many of the functions with the free version, if not all. If there are options that are not available, they will have a lock on them.
If you want to learn more about how to begin your own meditation and mindfulness practice, check out “Meditation in 5 Easy Steps is Your Path to Calm“.
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