Challenge 1 – Exhale Remember to breathe properly
The 4-7-8 (or Relaxing Breath) Exercise
Place the tip of your tongue against the ridge of tissue just behind your upper front teeth, and keep it there through the entire exercise. You will be exhaling through your mouth around your tongue; try pursing your lips slightly if this seems awkward.
Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound.
Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of four.
Hold your breath for a count of seven.
Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound to a count of eight.
This is one breath. Now inhale again and repeat the cycle three more times for a total of four breaths.
Note that with this breathing technique, you always inhale quietly through your nose and exhale audibly through your mouth. The tip of your tongue stays in position the whole time. Exhalation takes twice as long as inhalation.
Some of the researched benefits of controlled deliberate breathing are
- slows the heartbeat and can lower or stabilize blood pressure.([i])
- It helps you relax, lowering the harmful effects of the stress hormone cortisol on your body ([ii])
- good way to reduce stress and relax([iii])
It is important that it is done properly – Controlled, deliberate deep breathing ([iv]) is important. It must be done properly. Just taking in deep breaths or not breathing can be harmful.
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