3 Breathwork Exercises For Better Sleep
What is breathwork?
Breathwork is an intentional breathing pattern or rhythm, when practiced, it improves mental, physical, and spiritual wellbeing. However, there is not just one type of breath pattern, there are many that will help provide a deep relaxation or energize you. In this blog post, we will go over 3 different techniques that will help you have a better rest.
For best results, it’s recommended to sit in a comfortable upright position that allows your back to be straight and gently close the eyes. If you feel dizzy at any time, begin breathing at your natural pace and/or take a break until you may feel ready to begin again.
Disclaimer: These are only breathing exercises we love. Scoria World Inc. assumes no liability on injuries or other issues caused by these techniques. Please consult your doctor or health practitioner if you have any health concerns before attempting these exercises.
- Start with an audible exhale to release tension in your shoulder
- Allow the lips to be gently touching
- Inhale through the nose for 4 seconds
- Then hold your breath for 7 seconds
- Exhale from the mouth for 8 seconds while making a whoosh sound
- Repeat this 4 times
This breath technique is best practiced when feeling overwhelmed and stressed, or before responding to an upsetting situation. Or simply you can practice this before bed. Dr. Andrew Weil, refers to this technique as a “natural tranquilizer for the nervous system” via WebMD.
Pro tip: It’s suggested that you repeat this four times when you first begin using this technique, however, with time you can gradually work towards eight.
- Inhale deeply through the nose
- On your inhale fill the belly up with air feeling it expand
- Then exhale the air out from the belly then through the nose
- Empty the belly out from air releasing through the nose
- When exhaling, be mindful of the air releasing through your body
- As you repeat this exercise, with time try drawing in a little more air now expanding into the ribs
- On the exhale let go of the breath from the rib cage then the belly
- Repeat this deep breathing into the belly and then rib cage for about 4-5 breaths
- Once you are comfortable to draw in more air, you can start to expand your inhale to draw in more air into the upper chest
- On the exhale let the breath go first from the upper chest, lungs, then belly
- Continue at your own pace
3 Part breathing is commonly done while practicing Yoga. Like other breathing exercises, this technique will help calm you when stressed and increase your concentration due to the increase of oxygen.
Pro tip: When breathing in do not force yourself into overcapacity, your lungs should feel comfortable and full - inhaling and exhaling smoothly.
- Inhale slowly through your nose for a count of 4 seconds
- Hold your breath for 4 seconds
- Exhale slowly for 4 seconds through the mouth
- Repeat this technique 1-3 times
Box breathing can increase your focus and reduce stress. It is known to also be a huge help to those with mental health such as anxiety, depression, and PTSD. It is also referred to as Square Breathing or 4-4-4.
Pro tip: If 4 is too long, try holding for 3 seconds instead. Over time when you are comfortable, try holding for a count of 5 or 6. Notice if you are shallow breathing, make sure your breath is going all the way to the belly.
Image credits: Mathias Soler, Duff the Pysch, Darrien Minnie and Meadowsweet Photography, Maimonides EM