What Is Breathwork?

Breathing is the most essential part of the autonomic nervous system by which our bodies survive. So everyone knows how important breathing is. However, not all of us realize how powerful it can be. Only with the very act of inhalation and exhalation you can control your blood pressure, calm anxiety, and build a laser-sharp focus.

While different breathing practices have been around for decades, Breathwork is becoming increasingly popular these days. Recent scientific studies have already established that the benefits of this ancient practice are real. According to research, this holistic treatment can help reduce post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, insomnia, attention deficit disorder and encourage positive mental health habits.

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What is Breathwork?

Breathwork refers to a group of breathing exercises that manipulate your breathing rate and depth to enter a different state of awareness. This meditative practice is a part of the holistic lifestyle that increases mind-body connection by regulating the flow of breath. The main idea of breathwork is to release all the toxins and worry when you breathe out and nurture your body and mind when you breathe in.

How does it work?

With a busy life and all the priorities, people often become overwhelmed by constant stress and feel out of control. When you start focusing on your breath it helps in boosting calmness and concentration. Wondering how? When you breathe consciously, the mind slows down and focuses on the present moment. This small break allows your body and mind to reset and go back to your daily activities feeling clearer and refreshed. Regular breathwork practice offers a wide range of health benefits including increased immunity and improved emotional control. 

Benefits of Breathwork

Everyone knows that deep breathing exercises help with stress and improves calmness.

However, formal breathwork has some exclusive health benefits as well. Depending on the type of breathwork you are practicing, you can bring about improvements to your physical and psychological, well-being.

Some significant health benefits of breathwork include —

  • Alkalizes your blood PH
  • Increases muscle tone
  • Improves lung function
  • Strengthen immune system
  • Reduces risk of hypertension
  • Improves mental concentration
  • Lifts your mood and reduces stress.
  • Develop or increase self-awareness
  • Increases mindfulness and appreciation of life
  • Diverts the health problems associated with chronic stress.
  • Improves blood pressure and circulation by eliciting the body’s relaxation response
  • More complex methods of breathwork under the supervision of a trained instructor help with addiction recovery and support cathartic release from stress and trauma.

Examples of Breathwork Exercises

With the increasing popularity, several different forms of breathwork have been developed and are being used in various practices.

Some of the most popular types of breathwork Include —

  • Pranayama
  • Shamanic Breathwork
  • Vivation
  • Rebirthing
  • Transformational Breath
  • Holotropic Breathwork
  • Clarity Breathwork
  • Zen Yoga Breathwork

Apart from these 8 types, there are also various forms of breathing practices yogis use to achieve mind-altering effects. Here are some of the popular types of breathing techniques that are used in various practices —

  • Box Breathing
  • Diaphragmatic Breathing
  • Pursed Lip Breathing
  • 4-7-8- Breathing
  • Alternate Nostril Breaths
  • Deep Abdominal Breathing

Breathwork is an extremely powerful tool that is often overlooked in westernized yoga classes. Although scientists are confirming the effects of breathwork today, the healing power of breathing exercises has long been revered in many cultures. You can consult with an instructor and easily incorporate breathwork into your practice to enjoy countless benefits. 

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