Looking for books/resources on Breathe Work
January 22, 2017 3:43 PM   Subscribe

My massage therapist and trying to help me work on my breathing for anxiety and I guess overall well-being. When I took Pilates the trainer gave me a lot of titles, of course I don't have access to the trainer or the books. Where should I start? Amazon was a little overwhelming, I would love some personal recommendations. Thanks!
posted by Boyd to Health & Fitness (6 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
For "resources": try Paced Breathing (if you're on Android, I'm sure there's an iOS equivalent). Very easy to use, you just have to follow the tone and the graph. I find the body scan really easy to get into, as well.
posted by cotton dress sock at 5:56 PM on January 22, 2017 [1 favorite]

I've learned a bit about breathing from The Dance Training Project's page: here's one example video linked from the page that I found I could follow.
posted by batter_my_heart at 9:01 PM on January 22, 2017

Let Every Breath covers the Systema (Russian martial art) approach to breathing. I found it a useful read, and the Systema approach to breathing has helped me through the pain of getting both knees replaced. It also works for anxiety, but I don't have as much experience with that. There's also a DVD if you're not a reader.
posted by DaveP at 3:35 AM on January 23, 2017

I don't have a book recommendation but I've done a lot of breathwork/have 200 hour yoga teacher training.

Alternate nostril breathing is a great practice for anxiety and there are a few good youtube videos demonstrating how to do it:

Yoga with Adriene - Alternate Nostril Breathing

Try it once or twice a day for a few minutes.

The other biggie is belly breathing, you can practice lying down with one hand on your chest, one on your belly, and practice breathing from your belly so that your hand moves up on your belly when you breath in. It gets easier with practice.

Check in with your breathing throughout the day, just ask yourself "am I breathing" and take a few deep breaths on purpose. You'll start to notice when you're breathing shallowly or when you're even holding your breath, and you'll get better at releasing that tension more quickly.

When you're sitting, you can just relax your belly and take some deep breaths throughout the day while you're working (if you have a desk job). If I'm doing rote work I do nice deep breaths and really focus on exhaling completely, you get more fresh air on the inhale that way and it can improve alertness.
posted by lafemma at 7:13 AM on January 23, 2017

Breatheology is pretty good. Most of the techniques are borrowed from yoga/pranayama (which lafemma's comment mentions), and speaking as a recreational freediver with a lot of anxiety, they've been really helpful for me.
posted by otenba at 11:52 AM on January 23, 2017

There was a NY Times article on breathing in November and it's trending right now in their Most Popular section, which is how I came across it. Really covers the basics of using breathing for health and includes three simple exercises.

They quote one of the authors of the book The Healing Power of Breath, which I have on my shelf and is very good for beginners. I would recommend choosing one or two simple exercises that you like and do them every day, regularly. It doesn't take much time and doesn't need to be complicated. The first exercise in the NY Times article shows how simple breath work can be.
posted by daikon at 7:35 PM on January 23, 2017

« Older I'm trying to find gold bar and agate/geo earrings...   |   Why is long ziti? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.