5-Min Stress Relief: Are Breathing Exercises The Best Quick Solution?
If you’re wondering how long to do deep breathing exercises, don’t worry, it doesn’t take much time. when you think of breathwork or breathing exercises you might have a mental picture of a monk sitting on a peaceful mountain top for hours, or an adventurer sitting in shorts on a glacier diving into icy waters. Well, let me just say those things are great, but certainly not my life or at all practical for me.
I need quick practical techniques to keep me from losing it when I’m trying to rush out of the house for an important presentation, as my cat is coughing up a hairball on the rug, and I realize I’ve forgotten to put out the trash. I’m sure sitting on a peaceful mountain top is wonderful, but I need quick and easy stress relief techniques in my life. Great news, deep breathing exercises can absolutely fit the bill when it comes to being quick, easy, and fast stress relief.
When should I Do Deep Breathing Exercises?
Breathing exercises are so amazingly flexible that you can find techniques no matter what the situation is. If you’re on the highway and someone is being a total jerk and cuts you off, no problem, there’s a breathing exercise for that. If you’re at home and it looks like a disaster area in your kid’s room, no problem, there’s a breathing exercise for that. If you’re at work getting ready for a presentation and your laptop decides to install security updates, no problem, there’s a breathing exercise for that too! You don’t have to drop everything you’re doing for breathing exercises. You can practice anywhere you are when a stressful moment pops up.
No matter what term you choose to use, breathing exercises, yoga breathing, breathwork or pranayama, these practices are a great way to relieve stress, reduce anxiety, melt away tension, and give you relief any time anywhere in the moment.
How Long To Do Deep Breathing Exercises?
Don’t think that you have to commit to sitting for an hour practicing deep breathing exercises. You only need a short amount of time to benefit. Start small, only a few minutes at a time. Studies have shown that just 5-9 minutes of deep breathing exercises can be effective. Check out this study on deep breathing exercise durations for the facts.
Just take a few minutes to breathe when you start to feel anxious, stressed, restless, or exhausted. You can work your way up to practicing breathing exercises for longer amounts of time gradually if you like.
How Often Should I Practice Deep Breathing Exercises?
Start by practicing breathing exercises when you feel like you need relief. This could be once a day or a few times a week, whatever feels right for you. Don’t feel like you need to pressure yourself to create a regular deep breathing exercise routine right away. Working into a regular practice is beneficial, but ease into it. As you get more comfortable you can shoot for practicing about 3 times a day. I typically practice in the morning to help wake up and get my day started, throughout the day as stressful situations arise, and at night to wind down before bed. Remember when it comes to breathing exercises, listen to your body and do what’s right for you.
Breathing exercises are a powerful way to influence your nervous system and to help with feeling stressed, anxious, or fatigued. These techniques and exercises, while powerful, don’t require a lot of time. They can be easily worked into your everyday schedule without interrupting your life. Start small and work your way up from there.
Also, check out my previous blog post How Breathwork Works? Effective Practice or Just Woo Woo for more details on the science of how breathing exercises work to calm your nervous system. This post also gives more information on the types of breathing exercises and the different benefits they have to offer.