Best NSDR apps 2023

Unlocking Tranquility: Exploring the Best NSDR App for Ultimate Rest and Rejuvenation

Understanding the Essence of NSDR

Non-Sleep Deep Rest (NSDR) popularized by Andrew Huberman is a deep rooted ancient yogic practice for deep relaxation. NSDR is anything and everything that falls under relaxation techniques that include but are not limited to- Yoga Nidra, hypnotherapy, breathwork and more.

In this article we have prepared the ultimate guide to the best non-sleep deep rest (NSDR) apps of 2023. If you’re looking for a way to improve your sleep quality, reduce stress levels, and achieve a deeper sense of relaxation, you’ve come to the right place. Below, we have selected the top 10 NSDR apps available in 2023 that are worth trying. Let’s dive in!

Summary of Top NSDR Apps

Top NSDR apps 2023- Best overall is Insight Timer

With the integration of technology, a variety of NSDR apps have surfaced, each catering to unique needs. This article delves into the top NSDR apps in the market, showcasing a range of options to help users unwind and experience improved sleep quality.

The NSDR Apps we will be exploring below are:

  1. BEST OVERALL: Insight timer
  2. BEST FREE FOR KIDS: Smiling mind
  3. BEST FREE: UCLA mindful
  4. BEST FOR COACHING: Sleepiest
  6. MOST POPULAR:  Headspace
  7. BEST UPCOMING: Meditopia 
  10.  HIGH QUALITY LEARNING: Heartfulness daily meditation

Table of Pros and Cons: Making an Informed Choice on your relaxation NSDR APP

Insight timerIOS & AndroidFREEMIUM, premium subscription for $60/year,User friendly, thousands of meditations to choose from, teaches you to use a self times as well
Smiling mindIOS & AndroidFREEMeditations for children and the entire family
UCLA mindfulIOS & AndroidFREECreated by UCLA researchers
Sleep monitor:sleep trackerIOS & AndroidFREEMIUMTracks  data and includes sleep sounds and breathing activities
CalmIOS & Android7-day free trial; $69.99/ year Comprehensive app excellent for meditation, hypnotherapy audios, and workshops.
HeadspaceIOS & AndroidFree 7- or 14-day trial;$12.99/month; $69.99/year; family plan for up to six users is $99.99/yearMost popular app for mindfulness, breathwork and meditation, hand has a great collection on need based guided practices.
MeditopiaIOS & AndroidFREE TRIAL, one month $9.99 and $69.99Various meditation practices. Customizeprograms. Commnity engagement
MeditoIOS & AndroidFREE, no hidden costsMental health focus. Open-source. Customized meditation plans. 
BuddhifyIOS & Android$4.99 for iOS users; $3.99 for Google Play users; plus in-appGuided meditations are the apps forte.
Heartfulness Daily MeditationIOS & AndroidHeartfulness Institute has created these according to their methodologyNo ads.  Premium content.
August, 2023

In a world speeding toward complexity, NSDR apps offer a reminder to pause, breathe, and seek serenity. These digital tools bridge the gap between technology and ancient relaxation practices, granting users the gift of deep rest. Whether one chooses a free, advanced, or comprehensive option, each app paves the way to tranquility, unveiling the path to improved well-being. We have also curated a list of best 10 minute free Yoga Nidra/NSDR sessions available on the internet to go along with our review of the top apps.

Best Sleep NSDR Apps: Nurturing Restfulness in the Digital Age

As technology intersects with wellness, NSDR apps have become gateways to tranquility. Below, we present a curated selection of the best NSDR apps, each tailored to a specific audience seeking relaxation and improved sleep.

1.Insight Timer:

Insight Timer is a versatile meditation app offering a wide array of meditation practices, talks, and courses, suitable for practitioners of all levels. 

Insight Timer free meditation app

Pros: Extensive collection of guided meditations and music. Community features for connecting with fellow meditators. Customizable meditation timer. 

Cons: The vast content library might be overwhelming for some users.

2. Smiling Mind– NSDR app: Great for Kids

Designed with kids and adolescents in mind, Smiling Mind provides age-appropriate guided mindfulness sessions and structured programs. 

Smiling Mind

Pros: Tailored content for children. Simple interface. Programs for different age groups. 

Cons: Content is primarily focused on kids, limiting its appeal to adults.

Smiling Mind NSDR APP great for kids

3.UCLA Mindful:

CLA Mindful offers free mindfulness meditation sessions backed by the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center. 

Pros: Easy-to-follow guided meditations. Focus on evidence-based techniques.

 Cons: Limited content selection compared to more comprehensive apps.

4.Sleep Monitor:

Sleep monitor focuses on enhancing sleep quality through personalized coaching and high-quality audio experiences. 

Pros: Customized coaching for better sleep. High-quality content. Suitable for sleep improvement. 

Cons: May lack the diversity of content found in broader meditation apps.

5.Calm: Calm is renowned for its comprehensive collection of guided meditations, sleep stories, and relaxation exercises. 

Pros: Wide variety of content. High-quality sleep and stress reduction offerings. User-friendly interface. 

Cons: Premium subscription required for full access.


Headspace is well-known for its structured meditation programs and engaging animations, making it suitable for beginners. 

Pros: Well-structured programs. Engaging graphics. Diverse topics covered. 

Cons: Premium content requires a subscription. Limited free offerings.


Meditopia provides a range of meditation practices and mindfulness exercises, along with community features. 

Pros: Various meditation practices. Customized programs. Community engagement. 

Cons: Content variety might be narrower compared to larger apps.


Medito is a promising app focused on mental health and well-being, developed by professionals and available for free. 

Pros: Mental health focus. Open-source. Customized meditation plans. 

Cons: Being new, it may have fewer users and less content.


Buddhify offers a diverse range of guided meditations for different activities and lifestyles. 

Pros: Variety of guided meditations. User-friendly design. Tailored to busy individuals. 

Cons: Requires payment for full access.

10. Heartfulness Daily Meditation App:

Heartfulness Daily Meditation App provides the Heartfulness meditation practice for daily relaxation and meditation. 

Pros: Offers the Heartfulness practice. Free of cost. Suitable for beginners. 

Cons: Limited in terms of meditation styles and content variety compared to larger apps.

Remember that the suitability of each app depends on individual preferences and needs, so trying a few different options can help you find the one that resonates best with you.

Our favorite youtube channels on NSDR and Yoga Nidra are the following:

  1. Amrit Yoga- recommended by Andrew Huberman 
  1. Huberman Lab NSDR:
  1. Sleep Dragon NSDR: 

How to Choose the Perfect Meditation App for Your Needs

When it comes to selecting the ideal meditation app, personalized considerations are key. Begin by outlining your specific objectives for using the app, such as exploring meditation techniques, learning breathing exercises, managing anxiety, or improving sleep. Additionally, factor in the time and budget you’re willing to allocate for your meditation practice.

What to Consider When Selecting a Meditation App: Here are essential aspects to evaluate before downloading a meditation app, ensuring a rewarding experience that aligns with your goals.

Pricing: The price spectrum for listed apps spans from free to $100 for an annual subscription. Strike a balance between your financial and time investments, preventing overspending on an app you won’t fully engage with.

Device Compatibility: While all apps mentioned cater to iOS and Android, compatibility with your other devices, like smartwatches or tablets, varies. Ensure the app suits all your preferred devices prior to download.

Expert Guidance: Opt for apps backed by research-based information and techniques designed by experts, particularly when focusing on mental health improvement. Look for apps featuring guided meditations by seasoned professionals.

Diverse Programs: Beyond meditation, these apps encompass a range of offerings, from breathing exercises to soothing soundtracks, sleep stories, and self-help activities. Choose an app that meets your specific needs and provides additional options of interest.

Time Commitment: Different apps offer guided sessions spanning from one to five minutes to longer 20- to 30-minute periods. Select an app that aligns with your preferred time commitment.

Our Research Process: Our recommendations are founded on extensive research and hands-on experience with over 25 meditation apps. We meticulously analyzed more than 200 reader reviews, both positive and negative, to provide a well-rounded perspective. Moreover, we actively utilize many of these apps ourselves. Our evaluations included factors like teacher quality, evidence-based program availability, expert involvement in meditation creation, guided vs. self-led options, overall variety, flexibility, teaching quality, addressed meditation themes (e.g., sleep enhancement, anxiety reduction, focus improvement), and pricing. While conducted comprehensively, these assessments do have inherent limitations.

Share Your Feedback: We eagerly await your feedback on the apps you’ve downloaded and enjoyed using the most. Reach out to us at Your input assists us in generating valuable insights to enhance your exploration of meditation apps. We’re enthusiastic about receiving your thoughts and enriching our collective journey.

By embracing these considerations, you’ll be well-equipped to select a meditation app that harmonizes with your unique objectives and preferences.


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