Last month I had the pleasure of creating a breathwork course for Marriage 365. I taught on a daily breath practice, a breathing practice for the stressful moments, and a partner breathing exercise. It was a ton of fun and I’m so grateful for the opportunity.
The average adult breathes at a rate of 12-20 breaths per minute. So one way to incorporate a breathing practice would be to slow this rate down. This means you need to first test your breath rate and find your regular rhythm. A systematic review has shown that all effective breathing interventions for reducing stress and anxiety included some form of slow breathing.
The first video talks about how to test your breath rate.
Continue reading for the best ways to practice slow breathing.
1. Test your breath rate
Prolonging your exhales is one way to breathing slower. This is a great practice for when you feel anxious, when you are trying to wind down for bed, or after a hard workout when you are trying to calm your breathing and heart rate.
This video takes you through a 4 second inhale and 8 second exhale.
2. Longer exhales
Recent research has reported that allaying stress and anxiety can occur when breathing at a rate of 5-7 breaths per min. A great way to practice this is through resonance breathing. Resonance breathing is a way to synchronize your breath in a slow pattern for a certain amount of time.
A great time to practice this would be at your desk taking a break from the work frenzy. You can also incorporate it while sitting at home when trying to wind down.
This video allows you two different breathing exercises for a rate of 6 breaths per minute.