Resonant Breathing: How To & 8 Benefits Of This Simple Yet Powerful Technique

reviewed by Liz Burns 500H RYT

Stress and anxiety have a deep-seated impact on our outlook toward life. Resonant breathing is an effective tool to help you manage your anxiety and stress.

Learn how adopting this simple yet effective breathing technique can help you get a new outlook on your life. 

In this article, learn:

  • What is resonant breathing?
  • Benefits of resonant breathing
  • How to practice resonant breathing
  • How is it different from other breathing practices?
  • Precautions and tips to practice
woman practicing resonant breathing

Resonant Breathing: What Is It?

Resonant breathing is a mindful breathing technique wherein you consciously manipulate the depth and rhythm of your breath. 

A lot of bodily functions like heart rate variability (HRV), metabolic activity, blood pressure, and peristaltic activity in the gut have oscillating systems that are outside of our voluntary control.

You would be surprised to know that breathing is also an oscillating system, which is thankfully under our control. Breathing has the power to train, organize, and regulate other oscillating systems in our body.

Regularly practicing resonant breathing techniques can cause other systems to oscillate at their optimal frequency. In this technique, you have to do slow and relaxed diaphragmatic breathing. 

Resonant Breathing: 8 Benefits Of The Practice

1. Sleep quality enhancement

Getting a good night’s sleep is a luxury these days, and insomnia-related problems are further exacerbated by anxiety and stress.

person waking up happy

When you practice resonant breathing before bedtime, it can do wonders for your sleep quality. Because this breathing exercise helps calm your mind and body, your nervous system gives a green flag to your body for better sleep.

If you are struggling with restless sleep patterns or insomnia, then this slow breathing exercise can prove to be a game changer to help you get quality sleep and, thus, a better lifestyle

2. Pain management

Your mind and body: you can’t deny the power this duo holds! Resonant breathing helps you strengthen this specific connection.

Since resonant breathing techniques induce a state of relaxation, they can offer you significant relief from physical discomfort caused by migraines and even chronic pain conditions.

Moreover, the enhanced oxygen supply received by your body powers up your body’s cells, which helps in the natural healing process. Such breathing exercises are a great complementary practice for anyone undergoing rehabilitation or medical treatment. 

3. Mindfulness and present-moment awareness

By its nature, resonant breathing is a very beneficial mindful practice. As you focus on your breath in this technique, this will help you redirect your attention to the present moment

person mindfully drinking tea

When you are present in the current moment, you identify less with the baggage from your past and the anxiety about the future. 

If you practice resonant breathing regularly, this mindful exercise will equip you with the power to deal with everyday stress. Moreover, it helps foster a deep connection with the environment around you and, most importantly, with yourself. 

4. Energy and vitality boost

When you slow down and try to do resonant breathing, strangely enough, this can actually help you increase your energy levels and sustain the same for a longer period of time

Practicing this slow breathing technique impacts your body’s oxygen-carbon dioxide exchange. The deep breaths involved in the exercise help better oxygen supply to your cells and improve overall energy efficiency

Once you practice the exercise, you will feel more rejuvenated and revitalized afterward, and thus, it is an effective tool to combat sluggishness and fatigue.   

person running in the morning

5. Stress reduction and anxiety management

There is no denying the fact that stress negatively impacts your physical and mental health. Resonant breathing is truly an antidote to stress as it activates your body’s parasympathetic nervous system, making you less averse to fight or flight responses. 

When you practice resonant breathing exercises, your mind and body are more relaxed. Cortisol, which is responsible for the body’s stress response, also decreases in the body

You can reduce negative emotions like anxiety by simply including resonant breathing practices in your schedule. 

6. Heart health and blood pressure regulation

Cardiovascular health is all about your heart’s rhythm. Miraculously, resonant breathing has been shown to influence your heart rate variability when you practice about 6 breaths per minute. This variability can be understood as the interval between consecutive heartbeats.

When you have a balanced heart rate variability, this effectively means that you have better heart health and improved adaptability to stressors

man breathing mindfully

Practicing slow breathing helps stabilize your blood pressure to flow optimally and increases your body’s resilience against health-related ailments. 

7. Emotional regulation and mood enhancement

Our emotions affect us in a multitude of ways and, if not managed properly, can often leave us overwhelmed. So naturally, there arises a need for rational, emotional regulation, and resonant breathing offers to be a great tool for the same.

When you practice the given breathing technique, you will experience a soothing effect on the brain’s emotional centers. 

The exercise will help you better manage your mood swings and improve emotional stability overall. Regular practice can work wonders for you if you are dealing with conditions like bipolar disorder and depression.

8. Cognitive function and mental clarity

An optimal level of oxygen supply is important for your brain to function properly, and breathing techniques like resonant breathing help increase oxygenation in the body

people in a meeting room smiling

When you have a better-oxygenated body, it translates to improved cognitive functions like mental clarity, memory, and concentration. 

When you include resonant frequency breathing exercises in your daily life, then you can clearly see differences like improved focus and ability to think clearly in tense situations.

Resonant Breathing: How To Practice It

  • Firstly, find a comfortable and peaceful space where you can easily sit or lie down.
  • Get in a relaxed posture; if you are sitting, make sure that your back is straight.
  • To avoid visual attractions, we recommend that you close your eyes.
  • Now, take a few deep breaths to settle into the present moment before you start resonant breathing.
  • You need to slowly inhale through your nose; when you breathe, feel your abdomen rising
  • Now exhale the air out of your nose; while exhaling, feel your abdomen falling.
  • To achieve a resonant breathing frequency, you should be taking 4.5 to 7 breaths per minute.
  • Maintain the natural flow of resonant frequency breathing; the key is to maintain the natural flow between inhalation and exhalation of breath
  • Continue the practice for a few minutes and gradually increase the exercise’s duration.
woman practicing resonant breathing

Resonant Breathing: How Is It Different From Other Breathing Practices

1. Equal emphasis

Unlike other breathing techniques, in resonant frequency breathing, an equal emphasis is placed on both inhalation and exhalation.

The harmonious approach in this exercise helps align your breath with your body’s natural oscillation systems.

2. Rhythmic synchronization

On the one hand, other breathing practices, in one way or the other, press on breath control, but the case with resonant breathing is different.

Here, you have to sync your breath with other oscillating systems in your body to bring them on the same frequency. 

3. Activates vagus nerve

Resonant breathing specifically targets your parasympathetic nervous system by activating the vagus nerve.

This nerve is responsible for the relaxation response in your body, thus unlocking various psychological and physiological benefits.

nervous system firing

4. Ease of practice

To practice this exercise, you don’t require extensive training; even a beginner can get the benefits of controlled slow breathing without any intricate techniques. Resonant breathing’s simplicity makes it accessible to individuals of all ages and fitness levels

Resonant Breathing: Precautions and Tips

  • To avoid overexertion, you should ideally start with short sessions. Ideally, 3 minutes are good for initial sessions. 
  • You must listen to your body and immediately stop the exercise if you experience any discomfort, lightheadedness, or dizziness. 
  • You need to maintain a gentle and relaxed pace throughout the exercise. Take a break and return to your natural breathing before you resume the exercise.  
  • In case you are suffering from any existing medical conditions, specifically cardiovascular or respiratory, it is better to seek medical advice before you include exercise in your wellness regimen. 
  • Consistency is definitely the key to yielding better results, so try to keep a few minutes spare every day to manage your stress better.
  • Be careful not to perform the exercise immediately after heavy meals. Digestion can take a toll on ease of breathing, so it is better to perform the exercise at least 30 minutes after having your meals
  • To create a soothing environment for practicing resonant breathing, you can use soft background music and aromatic candles.
meditation room

Resonant Breathing: Concluding Thoughts

Resonant frequency breathing is a great exercise to help improve stress management and sleep quality

The breathing exercise is a great tool that you can use to deal with the complexities of modern life efficiently.

You can actually transform your life from within with the help of the resonant breathing technique. If you are a beginner, it is better to seek expert guidance to sail through the journey of mindfulness.

To help you on your consciousness journey, you can learn to balance the Shiva and Shakti energies within you.

More on the breath

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Wenlin is a Women’s Well-being Coach, Qigong and Yoga specialist for women and Red School Menstruality Mentor who is passionate about empowering working women to overcome overwhelm to find flow, ease and joy in their life. Wenlin brings with her over 15 years experience working at the intersection of mindfulness, creativity, psychology and wellness, with over 3,000 hours of training and 8 years of experience supporting women across Asia, Europe and the USA. If you want to learn how to find more flow and ease in your life, Wenlin is here to support you.

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