Breathing in meditation practices - Deepstash
Breathing in meditation practices

Breathing in meditation practices

The many benefits of meditation might be well documented, but the breathing exercises associated with mediation might be what's actually doing all the good work to your body and your mind. 

How you breathe has a direct effect on your heart rate, which in turn can influence every major system in your body in a sort-of sad chain reaction. 

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MORE IDEAS FROM Study: You're breathing wrong

Simply breathing at a 1:2 ratio of inhale time to exhale time can substantially change your heart rate, and thus your mood

Try exhaling for twice as long as you inhale, and now concentrate on repeating that length of exhale for, say, fifteen to thirty seconds. You'll notice your heart rate slow immediately. 

If you need a mantra to repeat to stay in the zone, try a phrase with 4 or 5 syllables.

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Breathing exercises

Breathing is at the core of ancient (and currently trendy) mindfulness practices, from yoga and tai chi to meditation.

However, studies suggest that breathing exercises alone, derived from those ancient yoga practices, can be good for the body and mind. 

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Simple 20 Minutes Meditation
  • Sit comfortably.
  • Close your eyes or stare at the ground a few feet away from you.
  • Rest your hands on your thighs.
  • Focus your attention on the area a few fingers below your navel.
  • Take a smooth, slow breath in and count each inhale and exhale, from one to ten and then back down to one.
  • Let thoughts come and go. Do not hold onto any particular thought.
  • If thoughts interrupt your counting, come back to your breath, and restart your counting again at 1.

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How it’s done:  Inhale for a count of 4, then exhale for a count of 4, all through the nose, which adds a natural resistance to the breath. Once you manage it, you can go up to a count of 6.

It calm the nervous system, increase focus and reduce stress.

When it works best: Anytime, anyplace — but this is one technique that’s especially effective before bed.

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