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Breathing for Relaxation

Updated: Apr 19, 2022

It's vital that you carve out time for rest and recovery in your exercise regimes, or the universe will carve time out for you & knock you on your bottom.

Stress, anxiety, lack of sleep, poor nutrition ... your body can only take on so much.

One amazing tool for helping cope with stress, as well as help relax for sleep, is breathing.

Box Breathing:

  • Used by Navy Seals to stay calm and focused

  • Heightens performance

  • Increases concentration

Technique- Inhale 4s : Hold 4s : Exhale 4s : Hold 4s (box breathing video)
Extended Version (for relaxation & sleep)- Inhale 4s : Hold 4s : Exhale 6s : Hold 2s (ext. box breathing video)

4-7-8 Breathing (made famous by Dr. Andrew Weil):

  • State of deep relaxation

  • Dr. Weil explains how to breath

Technique- Inhale 4s : Hold 7s : Exhale 8 (loud) (4-7-8 video guide)

It takes time and practice for these methods to really work, especially when you are experiencing anxiety. I found that it is easier to put it to use when in a "crisis" by practicing the techniques in a positive state. I even started by spending 5-7 minutes a night with my son before bed to work on the habit.

Small changes and practices yield big rewards - and in this case - relaxation!

1. Nestor, James. (2020) "Breath". London, England. Penguin Life.

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