Whether you want to increase your awareness, improve your mental acuity, optimize your work performance or prepare for sleep, breathing – or breathing exercise – can help.
This is a 10-minute exercise that will put you asleep. It slowly builds up until you can inhale for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 7 seconds, and exhale for 8 seconds.
This 15 minute exercise is designed to help you feel balanced and calm instead of being excited or overly relaxed. You gradually slow down your breathing until you achieve a steady 6 second inhalation and 6 second exhalation.
Relax and focus
Another 15 minute exercise designed to put you in a focused and concentrated state without stress. This technique is also known as “Box Breathing” or “Fourfold Breath” and helps you to work towards a “4: 4: 4: 4” breathing pattern – inhale for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 4 seconds, exhale for 4 seconds, and for 4 seconds Hold breath.
There is also a 5-minute version of this exercise that is recommended if your watch detects abnormally high levels of stress and then sends you a notification that it is time to relax.
When you are done, your watch will show you the average heart rate and the change in stress level that you were able to achieve from the breathing exercise. You can view these exercises at any time via the Garmin Connect app to check graphs of your breathing rate, your stress level and your heart rate during the exercise.
If you feel uncomfortable at the beginning of the exercise, don’t give up. As you get used to the breathing patterns and learn to better control your breathing, you will begin to notice the benefits that come with it. As with any other exercise, this requires some practice. But unlike many other training exercises, you don’t need any equipment or lessons. Just a quiet place … and maybe a pillow.