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Deep Breathing Exercises to Wind Down

By: Jack Claridge - Updated: 5 Dec 2010 | comments*Discuss
Exercise Breathing Exercises Deep

Many of us find our daily routines and jobs leave little time to wind down or relax but there some things that can be done to help alleviate some of the stress of a busy modern lifestyle; some of which include breathing exercises to help calm the body and sooth the mind.

How Does Deep Breathing Aid Relaxation?

It may surprise you to know that a lot of the time, especially if you are rushed or are hurrying from A to B that you aren’t breathing properly. Most of the time you are taking shallow breathes which do not allow the necessary amount of oxygen into the lungs and likewise to the brain. This can lead to hypertension, stress and even dizziness.

With the aid of deep breathing you can allow more air into your lungs and subsequently allow more oxygen to the brain.

What Kind of Deep Breathing Should I Do?

One of the most common exercises that you can do is simply to find yourself a nice quiet spot and to meditate. Of course many see meditation as something of a joke but the reality is something far more appealing. Meditation is simply allowing your body and mind to be in tune with each other whilst blocking out the trials and tribulations of the world around you. Think of it as tuning out unwanted noise on a radio broadcast.

Deep breathing is simply that; taking long deep breathes that allow the necessary air to the lungs and to the brain whilst allowing you to relax and take stock.

Exercise is good for the body and the mind but too much can lead to you feeling tired and listless. So it is important to balance out exercise of the body with exercise of the mind. It is important to understand that although you are concentrating on the fitness of your body you may be neglecting the well being of your mind so the two must be equally balanced.

How Often Should I Do Deep Breathing Exercises?

You should do these exercises as often as you can – there can never be too much relaxation of the mind. It is important however to make time to do them when you can, simply trying to steal a few minutes here and there is fine but you will never truly experience the calmness that you would get from spending fifteen to twenty minutes simply sitting down and going through your exercises.

Can I Listen to Music or Should I Have Complete Silence?

Again this is all part of the relaxation process; you should do whatever you feel comfortable with and whatever works best for you. Naturally it is best if you can have peace and quiet – this means you can collect your thoughts whilst doing your breathing exercises – but if you feel music will help then that’s fine. Many people choose to listen to relaxation tapes which may have the sound of whale song or bird song but it really is very much personal taste.

How Long Before I Notice a Difference?

This is the question most people want an answer to and the simple answer really is: pretty much as soon as you start. You will find that deep breathing has an almost instantaneous effect as the increased air into the lungs filters into the blood and up through the brain.

There are groups that specialise in deep breathing and meditation exercises and you will find a list of them in local directories or perhaps at a local college that runs night classes.

You should remember however that you don’t need to be part of a class to embark on these exercises; all you need is a little time and the will to relax and you are well on your way.

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