Breathing Techniques

Poor breathing habits may develop for a variety of causes but stress appears to be one of the key triggers.

Unlike many body functions that are affected by stress, and somewhat out of our control, breathing can be regulated and significantly influenced by the use of
special breathing exercises. The conscious regulation of the breathing cycle is one
of the most powerful, safe and drug-free ways of managing many aspects of a
run-away stress response.

By training our brain to regulate the way we breathe we can over-ride the involuntary mechanisms that often dominate when we are in a state of stress. This so-called ‘sympathetic dominance’ tends to drive the more physical aspects of a stressed state of mind often altering our circulation by raising the heart rate and blood pressure as well as disrupting many other body systems such as our digestion. Its not uncommon to experience unusual levels of muscular pain and fatigue as a result of this disrupted state of being. The end result is an overall feeling of ill health commonly accompanied by an exacerbation of other underlying problems such as irritable bowel, irritability
and sleep disturbance.

Learning how to tame your breathing is a key technique I use to help you regain
control over body and life.

By training the breath you will successfully boost the activity in a branch of the nervous system known as the parasympathetic system and quickly effect a reversal of the unwanted ‘sympathetic dominance’ with all its inherent unpleasant bodily reactions.

Think of it in this way; when you are shocked by something you tend to take a deep in-breath. This activates the sympathetic ‘get ready’ part of the nervous system so you are prepared to deal with the incoming stressor. Now think what happens when you get news that relieves or reassures us, you take a big sigh on the out breath. This activates the parasympathetic nervous system and pushes our body into a relaxed, ‘at ease’ or ’stand down’ state of being.

So, you already have these in built stress-breath reactions all I have to do is to train you how and when to recruit them.

I use a range of breathing techniques and exercises to affect your nervous system and as a result positively influence your heart rate, blood pressure, circulation, digestion and sleep cycle.

With practice most people can train their breath and make real headway in regaining a true state of balanced wellbeing.

The 10 Key effects of breathing exercises

  • Rebalances the nervous system
  • Promotes parasympathetic tone
  • Reverses the effects of sympathetic dominance
  • Stimulates positivity putting you back in control again
  • Calms the heart rate
  • Regulates blood and lymphatic circulation
  • Eases stress related digestive upsets
  • Encourages a healthy sleep pattern
  • Clears the mind of stress-clutter
  • Lowers blood pressure
Maria Webb

Maria Webb

BSc (Hons) Psychology,
BA (Counselling)
Diploma Clinical and Pastoral Counselling

I have been working in the area of stress management since the early 1990's providing an individualised approach to ease the effects of life stresses on the emotional and physical health of people of all ages and backgrounds.

Stress affects people in many different ways and I have found that no one approach works with all people.

Over the years I have developed my methods, drawing on many aspects of psychology, counselling and classic stress management techniques in order to offer a balanced and person-centred way forward that can be adapted to suit most people.

Where appropriate, I also like to include advice on diet and lifestyle to complete the holistic approach.