A powerful, yet simple and effective practice to “reset your breath.” Science indicates that taking slow deep breaths can lower stress and anxiety, as well as heighten performance and concentration. This technique can be beneficial to everyone from kids to adults, and it's easy to remember because like a square has 4 sides, there are 4 steps, & 4 breaths.
Getting started with square breathing is as simple as 1, 2, 3, 4…
Step 1: Slowly Inhale
Inhale slowly and deeply through your nose and count to four.
Step 2: Hold your breath
Hold your breath for another count of four. 1…2…3….4
Step 3: Exhale Slowly
Exhale through your moth for the count of four. Be conscious of the feeling of the air leaving your lungs.
Step 4: Hold your breath again
Hold the lungs in an empty state for a count of four.
Repeat Steps 1-4 as needed to reduce stress and improve mood.
The recommended square breathing cycle is four times in one sitting, but take it easy. Beginners may get dizzy after a few rounds, which is normal. If you get dizzy, sit still and relax breathing normally.
The science behind box breathing: Resetting your breath works to make your breath leave the fight-or-flight mode. By holding your breath, CO2 builds up in your blood. An increased blood CO2 enhances the cardio-inhibitory response of the vagus nerve when you exhale and stimulates your parasympathetic system. This produces a calm and relaxed feeling in the mind and body.*
*Medical News Today: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321805#benefits
*Health Line: https://www.healthline.com/health/box-breathing