Healthy Sleeping Habits

Wave Sleep Wants You To Schedule Your Bedtime Like You Schedule Your Workouts

Kells McPhillips

Photo: Getty Images/Recep bg
Sleep experts agree that going to bed at the same time every night and creating a wind-down ritual are the two key components for scoring a good night’s rest. Wave Sleep—a new app from Mason Levey and Brad Warsh, the duo that previously helped steer the ship at Y7 yoga studio—checks both boxes. Much like one might have scheduled a spot in yoga class in the before times to help ensure they attend said class (sigh, the memories!), the app aims to usher in a new age of commitment to bedtime using a booking-style platform for meditating your way to REM.

The app (free through March 11, then $10 per month) offers 45-minute sessions that are both live and on-demand and feature visualization-style meditations (think: walking along the beaches of Bali or floating along a lazy river in Colorado) to bring your mind and body toward sleep. One of 18 guides from across the country join the group digitally just before your experience begins, and the platform hosts classes every 30 minutes to accommodate every sleep schedule and time zone.

“We mix relaxation techniques with storytelling set to sleep-inducing music,” says Warsh. “So we’ll start you out with a breathing exercise; we’ll move into what we call a bed scan, or a body scan, where you start to relax and melt into the bed; and then we transition from this world to the story world where we take you on a visualization.”

In short, Wave’s a lot like your favorite pre-COVID spin class… only it’ll lull you to sleep rather than pump you up.

Wave’s director of music, Matthew Wong, even creates a symphonic playlist of delta waves, instruments, and synth tones to provide the right ambiance for cultivating rest. And while you’ll wrap up in your bed all alone, both Levey and Warsh stress that there’s a community aspect in these sleep primers that so many of us are missing right now. In short, Wave’s a lot like your favorite pre-COVID spin class… only it’ll lull you to sleep rather than pump you up.

“There’s a waiting room that opens 15 minutes before class, and if you sign up for that session, you’ll get a push notification that says, ‘Hey, the waiting room’s open.’ It’s a time that’s meant to relax you. There’s music, and then the sleep guide actually enters the waiting room five minutes before the session, and there’s a little bit of pre-session banter,” says Warsh. Wave even pins a prompt or question at the bottom of the waiting room to stimulate pillow talk (of the platonic variety).

Photo: Wave

As someone who doesn’t exactly have a seamless relationship with Mr. Sandman, I was eager to try an on-demand session for Wave Sleep for myself. Once I completed my nightly hygiene routine and turned my phone on “do not disturb” mode, I slid underneath the covers for the “Fall Asleep in a Bookshop” session, guided by Audrey. I immediately noticed that she speaks in a soothing, whisper-soft voice. This particular session took me to a bookshop (in my head, I imagined Three Lives & Company in New York City) decorated for the holidays. Audrey then walked me through the various sections of books, from children’s to fiction to geography. I was transported.

I wish I could say that I know how the bookstore story ends and that it’s lovely… but this bibliophile fell sound asleep while still perusing the children’s section. If you were one of those kids who always begged for “one more book!” at bedtime, Wave Sleep allows you to carry that joy into adulthood with the power of scheduling your bedtime with guided meditations. So while I might not be booking yoga classes for awhile, I’ll definitely be scheduling my bedtime.

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