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Relaxation Techniques for Stress Relief

By Madhusudhan Tammisetti

Tossing and turning on the couch or immersing oneself in watching TV after a stressful day is not an answer to stress relief. You need to trigger the body's natural relaxation response, which slows down your heart rate and breathing, lowers blood pressure, and brings back balance to your mind and body. You can achieve this by practicing different relaxation techniques such as meditation, deep breathing, yoga, tai chi, or rhythmic exercise.

You may opt for any technique, but most of them can be done on your own or with a coach or partner. It's important to note that a relaxation technique working for some may not work for others. The right relaxation technique fits your lifestyle, elicits a relaxation response from you and helps focus your mind, and resonates with you. Regular practice of stress relief techniques may improve sleep, reduce stress and anxiety, improve overall health, and boost your energy.

Deep Breathing

Deep breathing is a powerful relaxation method and a simple way to focus your mind. It's easy to learn and can be practiced anywhere, which provides a simple and quick way to check your stress levels. Deep breathing is a foundation for many other relaxation techniques. It can also be combined with other relaxation practices such as music and aromatherapy.

So, how one can practice deep breathing?

Sit comfortably in a quiet environment with your back straight. If you're having trouble keeping the back straight, you can sit against the wall or use a backrest. It's important that you sit at ease to relieve stress.

Now, put one hand on your stomach and the other on your chest. When you take a deep breath in through your nose, the hand on the stomach should rise, and the hand on the chest should've little to no movement. Exhale through your mouth. When you exhale, the hand on the stomach will move in, and the hand on the chest would've very little movement. Continue to inhale from your nose and exhale from the mouth. You may see a fall in your stress levels.

If you're facing difficulty breathing from the abdomen while sitting straight, then lie down on the ground with a book on the stomach. The whole point of practicing deep breathing is to ease stress in a comfortable environment.

Yoga

Combined with deep breathing, you can perform yoga in a stationary position or with some moving poses. Yoga can help reduce anxiety and stress and improve stamina, flexibility, strength, and balance. Whichever form of yoga you practice, most of the poses concentrate on deep breathing, gentle stretching, and steady movement for stress relief.

Yoga, combined with deep breathing, is a stress buster, and you can practice it at the office or home.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Savannah, Ga.

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