Benefits of Breathing Exercises

Changing the way you breathe can transform the type of breaths you take and help you feel calmer, less stressed and sleep better. Check out these breathing exercises benefits.

1. Improve COPD. Deep breathing exercises is an effective and economical method for improving the physical capacity and general wellbeing of patients with COPD.

For people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, or COPD, that feeling of not being able to take a deep breath is one of the earliest signs of the disease. As time goes on and the lungs aren’t able to expel air, the diaphragm isn’t able to do its job and help bring in oxygen.

The body turns to other muscles, like the ones in chest, back and even neck, to keep you breathing. Since these muscles aren’t cut out for breathing the way the diaphragm is, people with COPD will find themselves not getting enough oxygen and feeling tired and worn out, not to mention the feeling of always needing a bit more air.

Because it’s become harder to breathe, individuals with COPD often find themselves avoiding exercise and other activities that will cause even more shortness of breath. As the body’s muscles weaken, it becomes more difficult to breathe. Several studies have found that breathing techniques and exercises are an effective way of helping to ease the burden of COPD.

2. Lower Blood Pressure. Deep breathing exercises are beneficial for reducing blood pressure.

For folks with high blood pressure, practicing breathing techniques and breathing exercises for anxiety can help naturally lower blood pressure, reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. Researchers found that blood pressure was significantly lower after doing six rounds of deep breathing exercises for 30 seconds each time.

3. Reduce Anxiety. Breathing exercises for anxiety can be really helpful, whether you suffer from an anxiety disorder or are just confronting a nerve-wracking, anxious experience. Research has shown that just one session of slower breathing can have positive effects on anxiety.

One study conducted among athletes discovered that when they practiced breathing techniques for 30 minutes before performing, it had a positive impact on their heart rates and also left them feeling less anxious and tense than beforehand.

4. Improve Sleep and Lower Stress. Breathing exercises for sleep can help send you to dreamland. When you practice deep breathing while in bed, you’re giving the body permission to quit being on high alert and, instead, to relax. Focusing on your breathing also forces your mind to concentrate on the task at hand, and not on whatever you’re lying in bed thinking about, which can often be enough to lull you to sleep.

Breathing exercises when you’re stressed act in the same way. Activating the parasympathetic system directs your body away from the fight-or-flight response that flares up when we’re stressed about something, and reminds it to chill out instead. The result is a slower heart rate, deeper breathing and a greater sense of calm.

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