Headspace launches immersive mindfulness and meditation app, Headspace XR, with Meta and Nexus Studios 

Headspace launches immersive mindfulness and meditation app, Headspace XR, with Meta and Nexus Studios 

Headspace, the provider of the world’s most accessible, comprehensive mental health system, and Nexus Studios, an award-winning global studio in film and experience design, released an immersive reality experience called Headspace XR, available exclusively in the Meta Quest Store. A first-of-its-kind, immersive playground for the mind, Headspace XR incorporates both mixed and virtual reality experiences, including mood-boosting games, one-on-one guided meditations, and techniques to help users strengthen their mind-body connection through movement and breathwork. 

Headspace XR was designed to engage younger generations – particularly Gen Z – with mindfulness and meditation tools through a new and innovative medium. According to a study conducted by Gallup and Meta, a quarter of adults worldwide feel very or fairly lonely. Younger generations (ages 19-29) feel loneliness more acutely, with 27% reporting they feel very or fairly lonely. Additional data from the APA and CDC states that more than nine in 10 Gen Z adults (91%) report having experienced at least one physical or emotional symptom because of stress, such as feeling depressed or sad (58%) or lacking interest, motivation or energy (55%). This age demographic is at a critical juncture of learning how to build lifelong mental health habits. With the extended reality activities in Headspace XR, players can learn how to incorporate mindfulness techniques into their everyday lives, while also participating in positive socialisation and community building with their friends. 

“Research shows that when humans play, our brains are activated in a way that can impact overall life satisfaction and emotional well being. Unfortunately, our day-to-day lives are often stripped of this opportunity,” said Sara Cohen, Vice President of Content Creation at Headspace. “Together with Meta and Nexus Studios, we’re thrilled to combine the power of play with meditation and mindfulness in an immersive experience that also allows you to build community by engaging in Headspace XR together with your friends.” 

Later this year, Headspace will conduct a randomised control trial to evaluate how Headspace XR helps people with social health and connection, as well as perceived and objective stress, at Virginia Tech. The study aims to explore the direct mental health benefits of mindfulness in virtual environments, specifically providing evidence supporting the effectiveness of using Headspace in the metaverse. This will also contribute to the scientific exploration of the applicability of immersive reality in the future of digital health. 

“Players keep saying to us, ‘I didn’t know mindfulness could be like this!’ – We love that they’re getting to experience the benefits of these science-based mindfulness techniques while having fun and spending time with friends,” said Deborah Casswell, Executive Creative Director, Nexus Studios. “This response really encapsulates our ambition for the project. Nexus Studios took the best of the Quest platform – its social, immersive, playful qualities – and reimagined Headspace’s powerful mindfulness techniques for a younger audience.” 

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