17 June 2020

3 breathing techniques that will help you relax

In the course of our busy lives we deal with emotional stress, physical injury, disagreements, conflicts, posture issues and other stresses that lead to poor, dysfunctional breathing patterns. Our state of mind and emotions are also associated with distinct patterns of breath- typically when we feel stressed, anxious or afraid, we breathe short and shallow. As this process becomes habitual, we lose the ability to breathe deeply and fully. This can lead to physical illness, general lack of energy, feeling emotionally drained, fatigue, and can trigger ongoing anxiety and depression. However, by conscious breathing we can retrain a healthy breath pattern and hack our brain activity changing the way we feel in any moment”

Here’s 3 simple techniques to add to your belt:

Technique 1: 4-7-8 Breath


A powerful anxiety, panic and stress busting breath! It activates the parasympathetic nervous system (so we move from flight or fight mode to rest & digest) it reduces heart rate, causes your body to relax and mind to slow! It’s also a goodie to help get you to sleep!

1. Place tongue on roof of your mouth
2. Inhale through nose for count of 4.
3. Hold breath count of 7.
4. Exhale through pursed lips for count of 8.
5. Repeat 3-4 times.

Technique 2: Bhramari pranayama – BEE BREATH


A fun breath practice that is a great tool for tuning out distractions, mind chatter and negative thoughts. It can also induce gamma waves in the brain and feelings of calm and happiness!

1) Sit up straight with eyes closed, pop a gentle smile on
2) Place index fingers in your ears (or on the cartilage between your cheek and ear is also a good
3) Inhale deep and steady through the nose.
4) Exhale slow and controlled making a bumble-bee humming sound
5) Repeat 5 times

Technique 3: Alternative Nostil Breathing


This can restore balance, ease the mind & body and bring us energetically back in alignment! It’s a great way to hit the reset button for your mental state…

1. Sit comfortably, spine straight, rest left hand on lap and bring right hand to face make a peace
sign. (We will be using thumb and ring finger)
2. Close eyes, take a deep breath in & out nose
3. Close right nostril with right thumb, inhale through left nostril slowly and steadily
4. Pause as you close left nostril with right ring finger and open right nostril
5. Release breath slowly through right nostril, pause briefly at end of exhale.
6. Inhale through right nostril slowly and steadily.
7. Pause as You close right nostril with right thumb and open left nostril
8. Release breath slowly through left nostril
9. Repeat section 3-8 above for 5-10 cycles

Tip: Consistency helps so try match length of inhales, pauses and exhales (e.g. start count of 5
and increase as refine practise).


Written by Stuart Sandeman © www.breathpod.me