Discover the 4-7-8 Breathing Method
The 4-7-8 breathing method refers to the deep breathing technique that staggers inhaling and exhaling over 19 seconds. This breathing technique is sometimes referred to as ‘resonant relaxing breath’. If you’re looking to improve your sleep or reduce your anxiety levels, the 4-7-8 breathing method is a fantastic tool for you to utilise.
Who can benefit from 4-7-8 breathing?
Deep breathing is beneficial for everyone, but the 4-7-8 breathing method is particularly effective for people who are looking to introduce calmness and serenity into their daily routines. This technique can also benefit your mood and sleeping patterns.
The 4-7-8 breathing method requires the participant to focus purely on the rhythm of their breathing, resulting in the control of their emotions.
To learn more about the various benefits of deep breathing exercises, visit The Global Classroom’s Deep Breath Hub for additional resources or enjoy our recent classroom in celebration of World Breathing Day.
How do I use the 4-7-8 breathing method?
As with most breathing techniques, 4-7-8 breathing is most effective when you’re sitting in an upright, comfortable position. It’s also best to find a quiet space where you won’t be disturbed. Then, you’re ready to begin.
Step One: Position your tongue
Before you start the breathing you need to move your tongue into the correct position. You should place the tip of your tongue on the tissues behind your top front teeth.
Step Two: Let it all go
To ensure you start your 4-7-8 breathing exercise with neutral, natural breathing patterns, you need to exhale slowly through your mouth. As you do this, you should feel your lungs naturally empty of air.
Step Three: Breathe in
Take a deep, slow breath in through your nose and continue to inhale until you reach the count of four. As you do this, ensure you focus solely on your counting and your breathing.
Step Four: Time to hold it
Once you’ve inhaled for a count of four, resist the urge to exhale straight away. Instead, hold your breath whilst you slowly count to seven. This step of the 4-7-8 breathing method helps to strengthen your lung capacity and increases your own control over your breath.
Step Five: Time to exhale
You can now exhale forcefully, ensuring that you make a whoosh sound with pursed lips as you do so. However, you still need to maintain some control here as this stage of 4-7-8 breathing should last eight seconds. It’s important to develop control on the exhalation as well as the inhalation to help you preserve your breath for longer.
You should then repeat this cycle four times, and the exercise should be performed twice a day to ensure you experience the most benefits. We recommend that you avoid repeating this cycle in excess of four times at the beginning of your 4-7-8 journey. Once you become more comfortable with the technique, you can extend the number of cycles you complete to reap greater benefits.
The 4-7-8 breathing method is also recommended by James Nestor. James is a bestselling author whose latest book – Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art – focuses on the impact that breathing habits have on our overall well-being and success in life.
The Global Classroom is thrilled to have James as a supporter, and you can join him in our seventh digital classroom, Deep Breath where he co-hosts alongside Jeff Shaw.
By implementing the 4-7-8 method into your daily routine, you should experience increased calm and improved sleep patterns. These will naturally result in a positive impact on your overall well-being.