Breathing, how hard could it be? Turns out, harder than you might think. Breathing for maximum benefit is not something most people naturally do. In fact, a great number of us commonly breathe the opposite of what is best for our bodies—raising our shoulders and sucking in our guts on the in-breath, and pressing the abdomen out on the exhale. To get the most of out of each breath, you should expand the thoracic cavity on the inhale, pushing out your stomach to give your lungs maximum room to expand. And that’s just one small technique to make your breathing more powerful and healthful.



Breathing can actually be a highly effective wellness tool. Controlled breathing exercises can, in fact, help you alleviate anxiety, depression, and stress of all kinds. You can lower your heart rate, clear your thinking, and balance your blood acidity. Medical researchers believe that focusing on efficient breathing can even help fight inflammation in your body—a major contributor to, if not cause of, serious diseases ranging from arthritis to cancer.


This is not late-breaking news. Breath has been used as a meditative and health tool for centuries, if not millennia. It is integral to yoga and the spiritual practice of Buddhism. It is also a central focus in the alternative medical practice of Ayurveda.


Breathwork professionals leverage an assortment of therapeutic and wellness breathing techniques. Here are a few: 


  • Slow and deep. The most fundamental breathwork technique, this involves a controlled slowing of your breathing to four to six breaths per minute, and breathing as deep as possible on each inhale. This fills the lungs nearly to their capacity and improves blood oxygenation. Exhale fully to totally rid the lungs of waste products, tightening your core muscles.


  • 4-7-8 breathing. This is common and simple technique helps relieve stress and prepare the body for sleep. Begin by exhaling until your lungs are empty, and then slowly inhale through the nose (mouth closed) for a count of 4. Hold your breath for a count of 7. Then exhale purposefully but with control, through pursed lips, for a count of 8. Repeat the cycle several times for best effect.


  • Clarity breathwork. Usually done with the guidance of an instructor, this is a “circular” breathing practice in which you don’t hesitate between inhale and exhale. The breathing is deliberately paced, and this practice is meant to aid in healing, increase energy, and improve mental focus. 


There are many other breathing practices and techniques. You can explore breathwork in more depth through the International Breathwork Foundation ( You’ll find accomplished breathwork instructors to choose from on, launching soon!


Show some love if you liked this post!


Related Articles

body mass index illustration

Lowering Body Fat May Lower Cancer Risk

A study by the American Cancer Society has found a startling relationship between body fat and cancer. Researchers discovered that an elevated body mass index (BMI) is linked to approximately 11 percent of

Read More »
gogi berries inside a wooden bowl

Goji Berries and Age-Related Eye Disease

Eastern medicine has exploited the benefits of dried Goji berries (also known as wolfberries) for thousands of years. Now, western medicine is exploring the scientific basis for that use and uncovering some exciting

Read More »
blurred grocery aisle

Processed Foods and Brain Health

Do you shop exclusively in the center of the supermarket? You know, all those aisles jam-packed with boxes, bags, and cans of chemical-laden, ready-to-eat taste treats? Is your idea of a meal opening

Read More »
woman's smiling mouth

The Oral Test that Prevents Disease

When most people hear “oral test,” they think of a college exam that doesn’t involve writing answers down. But there’s a relatively new technology, called “oral microbiome testing” that you don’t need to

Read More »
woman sleeping

Is Bad Sleep Damaging Your Liver?

Evidence continues to indicate that poor sleep may be much more than an inconvenience. A study published this summer in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism concluded that unhealthy sleep patterns may

Read More »
person talking to indian woman online

What is A Health Coach?

Something has been lost in the ever-increasing trend toward medical specialization. Specialists have the luxury of focusing all their attention on one area of care, allowing them to provide more exceptional treatment. Unfortunately,

Read More »