For the best sound quality, tone and resonance, always place your bowl on a flat surface.
The tone is produced by striking the side of a singing bowl just at the rim.. They can also be played around the rim to emphasize the harmonic overtones. Below are instructions for both techniques. Each singing bowl is unique, and the best playing techniques are discovered by working with an individual bowl over time. IMPORTANT: If you purchased a crystal bowl NEVER strike too hard without a soft mallet.
Striking the bowl: (For Tibetan brass bowls only): Strike the bowl from the side, but at the rim. If you strike it too far down the bowl, it will not vibrate fully. If you strike it from above, it will not vibrate much at all. The harder you strike it, the louder and more powerful the tone will be. If you strike it too hard, the tone can become metallic and unpleasant. Find the middle ground where you give it a firm strike, but not too hard.
Playing around the rim: Place the bowl on your palm or a flatter surface. Hold the mallet against the rim of the bowl. Hold it firmly, but with a relaxed hand and wrist. Keep your hand low on the stick and close to the bowl. Many people hold their hand several inches above the rim of the bowl which makes it more difficult to play.
It is the pressure that makes the sound. Slowly run the mallet around the bowl with constant even pressure. If the bowl makes a rattling sound, slow down and apply more constant and even pressure.
Go slowly and listen to the sound rise. If you keep even pressure, the vibration will gradually build to a strong tone within a few seconds. The sound will continue to grow until the bowl will sing at its fullest volume. At this point, vary the speed - go slower to make the tone less intense, go faster to get it more active.