Soba Gara Makura - Japanese buckwheat pillow and neckroll.
The Japanese started using buckwheat as a filling for their bedding around 600 years ago. Today it is a popular filling for pillows to give you support and comfort while you sleep.
What is inside a Japanese buckwheat pillow?
A soba gara makura is filled with the hulls that encase buckwheat seeds. Buckwheat is a flower seed related to rhubarb. The hulls are firm and springy and form to align with your body contour- giving you the support where you need it while reducing the pressure on sensitive points on your neck and head.
Most soba gara makura are made from natural fibers and have zippers, allowing you to remove some of the buckwheat seeds if the pillow is too firm. It is a good idea to keep the seeds that you remove as the seeds in your pillow might settle and compress slightly over time.
Benefits of Soba Gara Makura:
- It keeps your spine in alignment – allowing for optimum cervical curvature. This neutral position allows your neck muscles to relax, releasing tension and allowing for a deeper and more restful sleep.
- Buckwheat pillows keep their shape throughout the night, so once you have found that perfect position, you will have a comfortable night’s sleep without your pillow collapsing.
- Soba Gara Makura has been used throughout history to reduce stress, tension, anxiety, and insomnia.
- It has also been claimed that buckwheat pillows are suitable for issues like snoring, migraines, and sinuses.
- Keeps your head and neck cool in summer and warm in winter as it promotes air circulation. It also absorbs sweat and heat.
- Buckwheat pillows tend to make a soft rustling sound, which many people find soothing as they fall asleep. You can even add some herbs like lavender to the filling to promote feelings of calm and peacefulness.
- Whether you lay on your back, stomach, or your side, there is always a gap between your neck and the bed while your head and shoulders touch the mattress. With a soba gara makura, the filling – the buckwheat hulls – can be adjusted to perfectly fill those gaps. The hulls are also firm enough to allow the pillow to temporarily keep its shape once you have found your sweet spot.
- Neck rolls are ideal for people who sleep on their backs, while the traditional, rectangular pillow is comfortable in any sleeping position.
- Buckwheat pillows are long-lasting, often being used for ten years or longer.
Buckwheat pillows, or soba gara makura, have been used for centuries. They offer health benefits and support your head and spine while you sleep. While it might take a short time to get used to the unique qualities of a buckwheat pillow, it promises to give you a refreshing night’s rest while reducing tension in your body and relieving neck and back pain.