Breathing Exercises to Relax - Step To Health

Breathing Exercises to Relax

Did you know that certain breathing exercises can help your body to relax, even in times of stress? Learn all about them in this article.
Breathing Exercises to Relax

Last update: 09 January, 2022

Maybe you’re under a lot of pressure, stress, or feeling nervous. Perhaps you’re having problems at work or with your partner, they just seem to multiply, and you can’t seem to calm down. For all these moments (and many more), you can take advantage of breathing exercises to relax. Learn a little more about them in the following article!

Relaxation exercises are very good to let go of stress, nerves, anxiety, and pressure – all sensations that are very common and frequent nowadays. These breathing exercises to relax are very useful tools to start paying more attention to that wonderful process of receiving oxygen, without which we couldn’t live.

We don’t usually take a step back and stop to analyze what’s happening around us and in our bodies, we simply breathe out of obligation and as something mechanical. These breathing exercises can change this.

Tecnicas para relajarte

Relaxation and breathing go hand-in-hand

These two similar words can go hand-in-hand, and they actually need to.

Think of the times when you’re angry or nervous. Your lungs are doing more work to get air in, and you may feel agitated, tense, and your breathing speeds up. So, it’s to be expected that by slowing down our breathing we can relax. In the same way that stress impairs the way we breathe, relaxation can improve it.

By practicing how to breathe you can reach a state of proper relaxation and calmness. It may seem a bit strange to have to learn how to breathe, but you’d be amazed at how helpful it is.

As a first step, you should know that conscious breathing is wide, slow, leisurely, and with a certain rhythm. Repeating three or four times already allows the body to lower the revolutions and improve the nervous system while quieting the mind and combating stress.

Bano relajante

That’s why some disciplines such as tai chi, yoga, and even meditation pay so much attention to breathing to achieve the perfect state of relaxation. You don’t need to travel to India or become a “yogi” to be calm, but you can take advantage of certain breathing exercises to relax and calm your anxiety or nerves.

It’s a very simple and effective routine. It’s not about concentration, but of reception to the sensations in your body.

Before you start, stretch a little and move to release tension and stretch your muscles. Your posture should be as comfortable as possible. If you can’t tolerate sitting in the lotus position (the typical meditation position), you can practice lying down on the couch or lying in bed.

If it’s cold, cover yourself, because when you relax your body temperature drops. Close your eyes, relax your lips and jaw and focus only on your breathing, without thinking about the problems that are troubling you.


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Breathing exercises to relax

Once you’ve completed all the above general steps, it’s time to choose one of the breathing exercises to relax listed below.

Equal breathing, or Sama Vritti

Inhale through your nose for a count of four and exhale through your nose for a count of four. That’s the basic technique.

Once you’ve practiced this several times, you can continue counting to five, six, or ten. The goal is to calm your nervous system, increase your concentration, and reduce stress. This is a very effective technique to do before bedtime.

Abdominal breathing

Place one hand on your chest and one on your abdomen. As you breathe, make sure your diaphragm inflates with enough air to expand your lungs as much as possible. Take 6 to 10 slow breaths per minute. Repeat this every day and you’ll see a change in your overall condition.

This exercise is also good for improving your blood pressure and heart rate. It works best before an important event such as an exam, wedding, or business meeting.

Breathing exercises for stress

Taking deep, mindful breaths relaxes the nervous system, no matter where you are.

Alternate nostril breathing, or Nadi Shodhana

According to yoga practitioners, this breathing exercise brings calm and balances the body by connecting the brain regions.

To do it, start with a comfortable posture for you such as meditation (lotus flower). Place your right thumb on your right nostril, exerting some pressure, but not too much. Breathe in deeply. Keep the air in your lungs and change the plugged nostril, so you exhale through the right nostril.

This works perfectly in those moments when you need to be focused and calm. It also allows you to feel more awake or energetic and soothes headaches.

Progressive relaxation

Next, this exercise is excellent for relieving tension in the whole body.

Close your eyes and concentrate on tensing and then relaxing your muscles, in groups of two or three seconds. Start with your toes, ankles, legs, knees, thighs, then your buttocks, hands, arms, back, chest, neck, jaw, and ending with your head.

For each group, take a slow, deep breath in for a count of five. This works anywhere, but is best done at home. However, be careful if you start to feel dizzy from hyperventilation.

Full breathing

Breathing exercises to relax
Taking full, steady breaths is a great breathing exercise to relax.

This is best done standing on a mat or blanket, barefoot or in socks, and wearing comfortable, loose-fitting clothes.

Inhale air through your nose deeply, so that your abdomen swells and your rib cage expands. You should also raise your shoulders a little and to help you a little more, stand on tiptoe. Keep the air in your lungs for a few seconds and then exhale slowly, while letting your body relax by lowering the soles of your feet, shoulders, and deflating your abdomen.


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