Four Week Breathing Program

For many years now I have been recommending a four week breathing program that uses the deep breathing technique offered on my CDs.

The program invites you to take time out each day to do at least sixty rounds of a deep breathing pattern. You can count the rounds on your fingers. Ideally you do the practice lying on your back in your yoga nidra relaxation pose.

Week One

Inhale and exhale to the same count for your sixty rounds. For example, if you inhale deeply for a count of six then you slowly exhale to a count of six.

Week Two

Inhale, hold the breath in and then exhale all to the same count.

Week Three

Inhale, exhale and hold the breath out for the same count.

Week Four

Combine the patterns. Breathe in and hold your breath in and then breathe out and hold your breath out, all for the same count.


If you are having difficulty with any of your breath retentions please drop to a lower count.

If you are lying in bed doing your deep breathing, it is a good idea to help to open up your chest by turning your pillow around so that it supports your head as well as your chest.

If you are lying on a firm surface, try putting a telephone book under your chest and under your head. The head and chest should be at the same level. Unlike your yoga nidra practice where it is so important to lie in a” letting go” position, free of tension, your breathing practice can be done satisfactorily with your knees bent and some people find it helpful to rest their hands on their chest to feel the movement of their rib cage:

It is a joy to introduce this program to people. It never fails to induce a whole new sense of wellbeing and the benefits are long term. It massages the heart and rejuvenates the nervous system, giving greater resilience to stress. Above all it improves the efficacy of your ‘normal’ unconscious breathing and makes you more breath conscious.

Get the whole family doing it! Children respond well to learning the breathing. It is particularly beneficial for anyone who suffers from bronchial problems, including asthmatics.

You are guided through these four deep breathing patterns on my CD Relaxation for Healing.

NB It is not advisable to practice breath retentions during pregnancy