Stress, anxiety, and the inability to properly relax are common problems that a lot of people face daily. Learning what is breathwork and how you can incorporate this technique into your daily life can be very beneficial. It’s going to help you relax while promoting self-awareness. Let’s take a closer look at what this technique is and how you can get started.
We’ll start by taking a closer look at the basics of breathwork. It’s a term used to describe techniques that help to improve your breathing – but it also targets the awareness you have of yourself and your surroundings.
While it has become a trending topic recently, breathwork is not something new. It’s an ancient practice that has been used by people for hundreds, if not thousands, of years ago. There is a strong connection between breathwork and breathe yoga.
Benefits of breathwork
There are different types of techniques that you can follow. However, all breathing styles that are used in these programs and exercises are beneficial.
We will divide the benefits of breathwork into physical and emotional, giving you a clear picture of what it can do for you.
1. Physical health benefits of breathwork
Breathwork offers ways to calm your mind, body, and emotions. When you do these techniques regularly, you’ll often begin to notice certain physical health benefits manifesting. Let’s take a closer look at these benefits:
- Balanced blood pressure: By improving your breathing technique, you’ll begin to notice that your blood pressure is reduced. More oxygen can flow into your body, and this is good for your heart as well.
More time in deep sleep: Improved sleep is another significant physical benefit of breathwork. It can shorten the time it takes you to fall asleep and increase the total duration of your sleep. This can help you feel more energetic and less tired the following day.
- Reduction of PTSD and feelings of trauma: If you’ve experienced trauma, breathwork can help ease the physical symptoms that sometimes come with thoughts of the events you had to endure.
- Stronger respiratory function: Your respiratory system plays an important role in your overall health. Poor respiratory function can reduce oxygen uptake efficacy. Breathwork is a highly effective choice when it comes to improving your respiratory function.
- Better immune system: Your immune system will also benefit because, with better breathing, more oxygen flows through your blood, which contributes to healthier tissues throughout your body.
- Reduction of stress hormones: Another important thing to consider is the fact that breathwork helps to lower stress hormones. When you’re constantly stressed, you have hormones like cortisol circulating through your body. This can contribute to physical symptoms, such as inflammation.
2. Emotional benefits
Apart from the fact that exercises that let you breathe in, breathe out, help with physical health, there are also emotional benefits that you should keep in mind. Here are some of the benefits you can expect in terms of your emotional and mental health:
- Lesser feelings of depression and anxiety: Depression and anxiety are very common, and they can have a serious impact on your ability to go through your daily routine. Breathwork is known to help improve self-awareness and can help you better control these negative thoughts and feelings.
- Better mental focus: As feelings of stress and anxiety start to build up, you’ll notice that they affect your ability to focus and concentrate. This is also an area where breathwork comes into the picture, as it allows your mind to calm down and focus better.
- Decrease in addictive behaviors: If you’re someone who struggles with addictive behaviors, then breathwork can help you get a greater level of control over your mind – and say no to these things more easily.
- Allowing emotional scars to heal: Most people have at least some emotional scars, and they often take a lot of time to heal. By allowing yourself to be calm and practice greater awareness, you’ll also start to notice that it becomes easier to let go of the past and move on.
- Better outlook on life: All of the benefits that breathwork brings you, such as less anxiety and stress, and improved sleep – are things that will also have a major impact on your outlook on life.
- Contentment and joy: You’ll be able to enjoy life as you begin to notice negativity fades away and is replaced with more positive thoughts in the process.
Breathing for awareness, relaxation, and improved focus
Breathwork has many uses, and when you incorporate it into your life, you must understand your expectations. When you know what you want to use these techniques for, you’ll find it easier to incorporate the right techniques.
The major things that breathing exercises can do for you are to help with things like your self-awareness, improve your focus, and make sure you’re able to relax. These things go a long way in boosting both your physical and mental health.
Types of breathwork
From somatic breathwork to other forms, there are different types of techniques that you can follow.
Apart from options like power breathe, rapid breathing, and similar styles, we also want to focus on four specific types of exercises that will often be included in these programs.
- Diaphragmatic breathing: Diaphragmatic breathing (also called “abdominal breathing” or “belly breathing”) encourages full oxygen and carbon dioxide exchange in the lungs. This type of breathing slows the heartbeat and can lower or stabilize blood pressure.
- Pursed lip breathing: This is a great choice when it comes to reducing stress and slowing your breathing rate. You’ll need to breathe in through your nose and exhale through pursed lips.
- Box breathing: In box breathing, you’ll breathe in while counting to four, and exhale while counting to four. Keep your lungs empty for four counts then repeat the process.
- 4-7-8 breathing: Another good breathing technique is called the 4-7-8. It’s a relaxation technique wherein you’ll inhale while counting to four. Then, hold your breath while you count to seven, and finally, exhale while you count to eight.
1. Holotropic breathwork
Holotropic breathwork is one of the more common techniques used. It focuses on using controlled breathing patterns that are quite fast. In many cases, music is played in the background to help with the breathwork technique. Holotropic breathing is performed for different durations – and you may have longer sessions as you get more acquainted with the technique.
2. Rebirthing breathwork
Rebirthing breathwork is a type of healing technique that focuses on circular breathing. A single session can last for up to two hours, but you are allowed to take breaks when necessary. You’ll take quick, shallow breaths, without any long breaks.
3. Clarity breathwork
A collaboration between Dana DeLong and Ashanna Solaris created the clarity breathwork technique. It helps to provide support for the body’s natural healing capabilities. This technique is also said to help unblock your emotions and holds some similarities to the popular rebirthing breathwork techniques.
Risks and recommendations
There are a couple of side effects that people sometimes note when they do breathwork techniques. Understanding them will ensure you are aware of what could happen. Let’s take a look at some of these risks and side effects:
- Tingling sensation in certain parts of your body, such as your hands or feet
- Muscle spasms
- A ringing sensation in your ears
- Dizziness, especially if you get up quickly
- Your heartbeat may become irregular
Tips and techniques
When it comes to making the most out of breathwork techniques, you must understand a few things. In this section, we’ll share a couple of tips to help you maximize the benefits that these sessions can offer you:
- Know when to take a break. Breathwork sessions sometimes last for over an hour. Take a break if you find that you’re feeling dizzy or have a rapid heartbeat.
- If you’re struggling with the technique, look at your local community to see if there are any groups where people come together and practice breathwork.
- Don’t push yourself over your limits during the early stages. Give yourself time to get used to how breathwork works.
- Consider taking NUU3 Keep Calm Gummies to help you remain relaxed – that’s going to boost the effects of the breathwork.
Breathwork is an excellent technique for personal growth, to improve self-awareness, and even helps with stress. The great thing about these techniques is the fact that they’re quite easy to incorporate into your daily life. However, be mindful of some side effects that can occur when you’re just getting started.