This list of Meditation apps is brought to you by AfterShokz whose bone conduction headphones are the best way to listen to meditations while still having the ability to hear the sounds of nature as you hike.
Whether you’re pitching a tent in your backyard or hiking deep into the woods, everyone can use nature as a source of meditation. While I wish I could wake up every day and get outside, the reality is that most of us have to wait until the weekend to allow nature to fuel and soothe us. Just the act of camping can be meditative; whether it is the process of setting up your tent, listening to your footsteps on the trail or forest bathing.
While I have a tendency to let my thoughts wander while trekking the trails, on longer hikes or during a backpacking trip, I find my mind naturally clearing after a few hours. To stimulate this process faster and create a more purposeful hiking experience, I recommend using one of the many great meditation apps available. These meditation apps help you improve your focus on the trail which in part allows for a more present hiking experience.
8 Meditation Apps Worth Downloading For The Trail
The act of walking meditation is called “kinhin” as an active person, I find this method of meditating in nature to be the most successful, as I have a hard time staying focused in a still position. Before beginning to meditate, I would recommend finding out what kind of meditator you are by reading about your ayurvedic dosha or mind body type.
For those days when you are unable to lace up your hiking boots and throw on your backpack, I find these meditation apps specifically helpful for keeping me calm when I don’t have the soothing presence of the outdoors. At my desk, I choose to turn on my AfterShokz and listen to the sounds of rain, birds, or the hum of a forest just as much as I do when I’m getting out there. Enjoy and make sure to experience nature in the best ways possible!
The Calm app focuses on nature as a method of meditation by using both natural sounds in their soundscapes as well as scenic videos within the app. When I use Calm while hiking, I choose the “mindful walking” series within the meditation section—this walking guide allows you to take time to realize your body and your surroundings.
Hiking with this guided meditation app will make you more aware of your foot placement and body movements. Through this process, you will have the ability to fully analyze your hiking form and move with greater purpose.
Headspace is one of the most highly-rated meditation apps in the app store—and for good reason. This all-inclusive meditation app has amazing features, design, and most importantly, guided meditations. For hiking with the Headspace app, I would recommend beginning with the “movement and sport” section. My favorites include “Walking In Nature”, “Walk Off Frustration” and “Connect With Your Body”.
Another reason to love HeadSpace—for me—is the guided meditation’s narrator. Not only can this app help on hikes or walks, but when I am sleeping in a tent and struggling to fall asleep, I’ve found the sleep section of this meditation app to be an amazing aid.
Buddhify describes itself as a meditation app “for those that don’t have the time to meditate.” These guided meditations are specifically made for being able to multitask while listening— meaning it’s well-suited for hiking and meditating at the same time.
Not only do they have walking meditations, but the Buddhify app has a whole series called “Parks and Nature” , which are meditations made for increasing your appreciation of the outdoors through a guided focus on the natural environment.
Zen is one of my favorite meditation apps to use while hiking—not only do they have guided meditations, but they also have music and affirming thought guides, which are a boost and change of pace when on the trail.
Whether you are going through hard times and need to work on increasing your self-esteem, finding your inner peace, or just want to listen to some calming tunes, Zen has it all.
5. Simple Habit
Simple Habit is one of the better meditation apps for hiking if you’re looking for exercise in your relaxation; they have a whole series of fitness-related guided meditations. There is a “mindful running” mediation, which pushes you to be more aware of your surroundings as well as a “quick body scan” which can help you realize your hiking hot spots.
The “remember your motivation” guided meditation can be great for those hard times when you are tromping up a steep hill. Simple Habit has a whole variety of specific guided meditations and talks that are great for listening to on the trail whether you are having issues with your relationship, or just need to find quiet in life.
Before you dive into meditation, the Stop, Breathe & Think app pushes you to check in by assessing your mental and physical state. I like this added step because it is a precursor to the practice of noting which is commonly used in meditation. This practice makes you aware of your emotions at hand, which can allow for better awareness of the self during meditation.
The best of this app’s guided meditations for hiking is the “Mindful Walk,” but most of the mediations and practices are great for listening while walking.
Mindfulness is one of the many great mediation apps that allow you to have total control over your experience.
With the ability to personalize your meditation by choosing the amount of time, whether or not you want guidance, and whether or not you want to listen to music with the mediation, Mindfulness is a very simple app for those just looking to gain greater mindfulness while walking the trails. All you do is set your time to meditate, put on your headphones, and start walking.
Meditation Studio is another amazing resource specifically for outdoors meditations. Created by Yoga and wellness brand Gaiam, this app has over 160 different guided meditations.
The “Outdoors” playlist is ideal for hiking with guided talks like “On a hiking trail” and “Forest Meditation.”