Best Peloton Meditations (For energy, sleep, and anxiety)


Among the thousands of on-demand classes, the peloton has over 1,300 meditations available in the peloton app that can be done without any equipment. But what exactly is peloton meditation?

As a whole, peloton meditation is a series of classes where you focus on mindfulness. Each class comes with different techniques like breathing, visualization, positive thinking, and gratitude. All classes can be done at home, on the go, while you wait, or in the office.

There are several different types of meditations including mindfulness, spiritual, movement, forgiveness, progressive, or visualization. Keep reading to learn how is peloton meditation, what are the best meditation classes, and how to implement them in your day-to-day life.

Is Peloton Meditation Good?

As a whole, peloton meditation is good because it uses body physiology to change the emotional state within 5 to 10 minutes. In each class, the instructor is guiding and explaining how to use breathing, thoughts, or muscle tension to relax the body and mind.

If you haven’t done meditation before, it may sound like some type of cult or fad. However, meditation is just simple exercises or techniques that help to increase self-awareness, relax the body, or focus on the task at hand.

Meditation is not new, but it has become very popular in recent years.

In fact, if you look below, you can see a chart that illustrates the amount of research that has been done around meditation and mindfulness in the last couple of years.

Numbers of research done on mindfulness

As you can see, the number of studies has exploded in the last decade. In fact, in 2020 alone, there were more studies done on mindfulness than in the last 50 years combined.

This means this we still don’t fully understand the exact mechanisms and benefits that come with long-term meditation practice.

How Many Meditation Peloton Have?

As a whole, the peloton has over 20 different meditation themes including breathing, sleep, empathy, deep relaxation, kindness, witness, healing, gratitude, relaxing, patience, courage, peace, happiness, energizing, acceptance, calming, body scan, and visualization.

Now, if we gonna go a step further, each theme comes with a storyline of guided instructions to achieve a sense of calm or relaxation.

Those instructions include changes in your breathing, thinking and mind-muscle connection to influence physiology either relax the body or energize the mind.

Before I show you the best peloton meditation classes, I want you to know that those classes can be done by everyone, regardless of their skills or previous meditation experience.

Most of the sessions are 5 to 15 minutes long and don’t require any gear.

As you will see in a moment, several benefits come from using peloton meditation daily. However, the only downside I find is that non of the classes actually teaches you how to continue or deepen your practice with meditation, without the peloton app.

Learn more: Click here to learn more about “best peloton stretch classes

Best Peloton Meditation For Morning

The best peloton meditation for the morning will include techniques that can energize you, clear your head from clutter, and direct your attention to your most important tasks.

Studies have shown that doing morning meditation helps to reduce cortisol levels, improve memory, and down-regulate stress (Brand et al. 2012).

Let’s start by identifying some of the key benefits of doing regular meditation and peloton classes you can do in the morning.

#1 Body Scan

The body scan is a well-known mindfulness technique that helps you increase your self-awareness and be more checked in with your physical cues. The meditation only takes 5 minutes, it can be done first thing in the morning as well as during the day when needed.

What is peloton body scan meditation? As a whole, the peloton body scan meditation is a 5-minute self-awareness practice where you focus on noticing any physical sensations in your body. You begin the scan at the top of your head and go all the way down to your toes, piece by piece.

Why body scan is good in the morning? This meditation technique is good in the morning because it helps you to become aware of what are you thinking about and what are you feeling, both physically and emotionally. The self-awareness of our own thoughts and feelings helps to relax and release muscle tension.

What I like about the peloton body scan is the time efficiency. All it takes is 5 minutes to instantly feel better and be more present at the moment.

The body scan is led by my favorite Peloton instructor Ross Rayburn, where he guides you step by step on what to do.

Another thing I like about a peloton body scan is that this meditation can be done by everyone, regardless if you’ve practiced meditation before or not.

#2 Gratitute Meditation

Gratitude meditation is one of my favorite practices, especially done in the morning. You can find this meditation in the audio-only section of the peloton meditations in the app.

What is peloton gratitude meditation? In general, the peloton gratitude meditation is a 5-minute practice where you focus on 1 to 3 things that happen to you that you feel truly grateful for. Those can be the achievements you accomplished in your life, situations, or people that you’ve met.

Why gratitude meditation is good in the morning? The peloton gratitude meditation is good in the morning because it helps to change the emotional state and solidify the feeling of gratitude. Feeling grateful in the morning helps to reduce stress, increases self-esteem, and be more productive.

I like to do gratitude meditation in the morning because it makes me feel happy and helps me to stay more focused on the task at hand.

Studies have shown that focusing on things that are good in our lives leads to better decision making, less stress, higher parasympathetic response, and lowered blood pressure (Emmons 2003).

The first time I was introduced to gratitude meditation was in 2017 at the Tony Robbins event “Unleash The Power Within” in London. The event took 4 days and it was all about learning the techniques that change the emotional state.

As Tony said, “You can’t be angry and grateful at the same time“. This means the moment you remind yourself about the things you feeling grateful for, your anger is replaced with pleasure, and worries are replaced with happiness.

But there is more.

Studies have shown that regular gratitude meditation leads to increased neuroplasticity, improvements in cognitive functions, and long-lasting changes in the hippocampus (Lardone et al. 2018).

This means that our thoughts, whenever they are compassionate or harsh, can actually change the physical structure of our brain (Puderbaugh 2021)

#3 Visualisation

Peloton visualization meditation includes several different ways to imagine stuff. My favorite is the class taken from “The Power of Sleep”, where you keep your eyes closed and imagine putting all your thoughts, worries, and problems into the box.

What is peloton visualization meditation? In general, peloton visualization meditation is a practice where you recreate images, sounds, and environments before they happen. It helps to prepare the mind, body, and consciousness for the upcoming challenges, situations, and circumstances.

Why visualization is good in the morning? Peloton visualization is good in the morning because it helps to clear the head from any negative thoughts and focus the attention on things that need to be done. It also helps with self-confidence and certainty before any stressful situation.

There are several fascinating studies about the power of visualization, also called “guided imagery”. Not only its been used as an integral part of mindfulness meditation, but also for healing, health maintenance, and the treatment of specific conditions (Giacobbi 2017).

I like to combine visualization meditation with gratitude in the morning. I start from gratitude where I focus my attention on things that I’m happy about and after 5 minutes I move on with my thoughts to things that I want to accomplish this week, this month, or this year.

Best Peloton Meditation For Anxiety

Now let’s talk about meditation for anxiety and stress because those techniques will combine the mind practice, as well as the changes in the physical body. Some of the techniques require muscle contraction, which is helpful with reducing muscle tension and trigger relaxation response.

#4 Breathing Meditation

There are several breathing meditation classes on the peloton app. My favorite one is with Aditi Shah and Ross Rayburn because I find their voice is calm and relaxing. Unlike cycling or yoga session, the meditation classes don’t require you any equipment or specific movement.

It’s all about listening to the instructor and following their guides. Therefore, choosing the ones that you like to listen to is very important.

What is peloton breathing meditation? As a whole, the peloton breathing meditation is a 5-minute mindfulness practice that involves deepening and slowing down the breathing to its natural rhythm. Changes in the breathing pattern stimulate changes in the autonomic nervous system and help to relax the body.

Why peloton breathing meditation is good for anxiety? Peloton breathing meditation is good for anxiety because it triggers the parasympathetic response, helps to reduce cortisol levels, and influences emotions. Also, the regular practice of deep breathing helps to better regulate the body’s response to stress and anxiety.

This means the more often we practice breathing, the more things that stress us out aren’t seen and felt as stressful and out of control.

Among the dozens of breathing scientific papers, I’ve found fascinating research about breathing and its health use in the Indo-Tibetan traditions.

The studies have shown that breathing (pranayama) can rapidly bring the mind to the present moment, reduce stress, and it’s an effective way to treat depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (Brown 2009)

I like to do peloton breathing classes when I feel anxious and worried. And I find that just 5-10 minutes of deep breathing is enough to change my physiology, relax and get back to my work.

A study done with fMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging) found significantly increased BOLD (Blood Oxygenation Level Dependent) activity in several brain areas during slow and deep breathing at 5.5 breaths per minute, compared to 10 breaths per minute (Critchley et al. 2015).

#5 Deep Relaxation Meditation

This meditation class helps to release not only the stress but also the muscle tension from the whole body. For this class, I like to lay down comfortably because it involves a lot of mind-muscle connections.

What is deep relaxation meditation on a peloton? In general, deep relaxation meditation is a relaxation technique that helps to release the tension in your body, feel more relaxed and calm. It involves intermittent contraction of specific muscle groups in the body, followed by release.

Why deep relaxation meditation is good for anxiety? As a whole, deep relaxation meditation is good for anxiety because holding the muscle in its peak contraction for 5 seconds, followed by relaxation helps to reduce muscle tension. It also triggers the parasympathetic response in the body.

This meditation class is similar to a relaxation technique called PMR (progressive muscle relaxation). It works by tensing a group of muscles as you breathe in, holding your breath, and relaxing the muscles as you breathe out. 

The instructor is giving you clear guidance on which muscle or body part you should work on next. The class involves tensing one specific body part (like clenching hands or contracting the core), but it also can include full-body short tension.

Not only that.

The 8-week deep relaxation meditation study done on long-term unemployed people with anxiety disorders has shown a significant decrease in the symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress (Merakou et al. 2019).

Here in this video, you can see an example of progressive muscle relaxation.

Best Peloton Meditation For Sleep

Now let’s take a look at the most popular group of peloton meditations – sleep. Apart from individual classes, the peloton app also has a special 2-week sleep program called “The Power of Sleep”, where you can sample all different types of meditations.

#6 Sleep Meditation

What is peloton sleep meditation? In general, the peloton sleep meditation is a mix of all different styles of meditation that include breathing, tension, visualization, mantra, humming, and gratitude. The classes are between 5 to 10 minutes. Each class is different and helps to unpack your thoughts and take away to help you fall asleep.

Why this class is good for sleep? As a whole, the peloton sleep meditation is good for sleep because it helps you to unplug, down-regulate, and relax the body before going to bed. It helps to lower the heart rate, kick start the rest and digest response, and increase the melatonin levels.

I like to take a peloton sleep meditation class whenever I’m fully awake and I know I must force myself to sleep. Unfortunately, 5 minutes is not enough for me to fall asleep. It usually takes at least 20 to 30 minutes to relax and let my mind drift away.

Learn more: Click here to learn about “best peloton classes for beginners

Best Peloton Meditation Instructors

I think that the best peloton meditation instructors and Ross, Chelsea, and Aditi. I find their voice to be the most relaxing. I don’t usually watch the meditation classes because I either lay down or keep my eyes closed. So I rather listen to all classes, instead of watching them.

That’s why I think the tone of voice, friendliness, and tempo are most important in the meditation classes, rather than appearance. I can also tell all of them had some type of background in meditation, or at least they have a passion for the subject.

Peloton Meditation vs Calm

The difference between peloton meditation and a calm meditation app is that peloton offers only individual classes. This is good for people who are brand new to meditation and want to try it. On the other hand, calm is more robust because not only has multiple themes but also offers multiple week programs.

I also think that calm specializes more in meditation because it has several different types of classes that range from self-care, relationship, focus, and more. Plus, in calm, there is no video of the instructor but only the audio where you simply listen to the person’s voice.

What I like about calm is that the narrator slows down the pace halfway thru the class, which has a calming and relaxing effect. They also have a section on the app for people who are already experienced with a meditation called “less guidance”.

It is basically more ambient sounds and less guidance, which helps you to work on your own meditation skills, without following any voice. This is a great way for people who want to take their meditation practice to the next level and be able to do it without the app.

Unlike peloton meditation, the calm app has also a whole section dedicated to sleep stories. Sleep stories are narrative stories that are read in a very soothing, quiet, and relaxed tone.

Here is a summary of the differences between peloton meditation and calm meditation app.

Peloton MeditationCalm Meditation
Good for beginners
Fewer meditation themes and classes
It explains the basics behind meditation
Good for beginners and advanced meditators
More meditation themes and classes
Explain mindfulness in depth including why we do it and the science
It has multiple sleep stories and masterclasses about meditation
Peloton Meditation vs Calm

In summary, if your goal is to deepen the meditation practice, I would recommend checking out the calm app. However, if your goal is to just do it from time to time, I would stick to the peloton.

Peloton Meditation vs Headspace

The difference between peloton meditation and a headspace meditation app is that headspace offers more variety of themes, meditation courses, and even unguided meditations. It also has a designated section of techniques and common obstacles, where you learn the basics of mindfulness.

On the other hand, the peloton meditation classes offer slightly less variety of classes, with most of the meditations being fully guided by their in-house instructors.

Generally speaking, headspace and calm are very similar meditation apps and they both offer more in-depth context strictly related to meditation. Peloton is more of a fitness app that has a meditation component.

However, the peloton meditation program is evolving at a rapid pace. This means each day there are new meditation classes added to the peloton library.

Learn more: Click here to learn about “best peloton programs

Conclusion

Peloton meditation is a great solution for everyone who wants to sample how to use mindfulness to relax and de-stress. It has a large variety of meditations that uses several techniques to change physiology and calm the body.

At the same time, if your goal is to expand further with the meditation knowledge and learn as much as you can to be able to practice on your own, without the peloton app, this program won’t cut it.

It is a good resource to get started but if you want to get more out of the mindfulness practice, I highly recommend trying some local or international meditation retreats that can deepen your practice.

Michal Sieroslawski

Michal is an exercise physiologist (MSc), nutrition coach, Ashtanga teacher, and fitness blogger. He shares his successes and failures to help busy men and women squash down 20, 50, or even 100 pounds of fat without leaving their home.

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