1. Abdominal breathing (Diaphragmatic breathing) : This technique encourages deeper breathing by engaging the diaphragm, a muscle located beneath the lungs. When you breathe abdominally, you allow your lungs to fill completely with air, increasing oxygen intake and helping to calm the nervous system. Here's how to practice it:
Sit comfortably or lie on your back.
Place one hand on your chest and the other on your abdomen.
Inhale slowly through your nose, making your abdomen rise under your hand.
Breathe out gently through your mouth, letting your abdomen sink back down.
Repeat this process, concentrating on the sensation of your abdomen rising and falling
2. Square Breathing : This technique involves rhythmic breathing cycles, often used in meditation and relaxation. The four equal stages of this method are: inhalation, retention of air, exhalation and retention after exhalation. This method helps to calm the nervous system and create a sense of regularity.
3. 4-7-8 Breathing : This technique is a variation on square breathing that promotes relaxation. It consists of inhaling for 4 beats, holding the breath for 7 beats, then exhaling for 8 beats. Holding the breath for 7 beats can help slow the heart rate and induce a feeling of calm.
4. Alternate breathing : This technique is often used in yoga and can help balance the right and left hemispheres of the brain, as well as reducing stress. It involves blocking one nostril during inhalation, then switching to the other nostril during exhalation.
5. Mindful breathing and Mindfulness : By concentrating fully on your breathing, you can create an experience of mindfulness. When you do this, you detach yourself from stressful thoughts of the past or future, refocus on the present moment and bring serenity to your mind.
6. Integrative practices : disciplines such as yoga and tai chi often combine fluid movement with conscious breathing. These methods help to release muscular tension, improve posture and create a state of relaxation.