The relaxation effect of prolonged expiratory breathing

Teruhisa Komori (Department of Stress and Health Science, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Tsu, Japan)

Mental Illness

ISSN: 2036-7465

Article publication date: 15 May 2018

711
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Abstract

This study was performed to confirm that autonomic nervous activity is affected by breathing speed. I hypothesized that prolonged expiratory breathing would promote parasympathetic dominance, whereas rapid breathing would promote sympathetic dominance. Ten healthy men, ages 21-28 years old, were instructed to perform prolonged expiratory breathing (6 seconds expiration, 4 seconds inspiration) after spontaneous breathing and rapid breathing (1 second expiration, 1 second inspiration) after spontaneous breathing; changes in high frequency (HF) and low frequency (LF)/HF of heart rate variability (HRV) were measured during each type of breathing. During prolonged expiratory breathing, parasympathetic nervous function was significantly activated. Conversely, during rapid breathing, parasympathetic nervous function was significantly suppressed. The HRV method assessing sympathetic and parasympathetic modulation in this study is an indirect, noninvasive method with clear limitations. The use of additional techniques should be considered to clarify the relationships between the breathing speed and the mind.

Keywords

Citation

Komori, T. (2018), "The relaxation effect of prolonged expiratory breathing", Mental Illness, Vol. 10 No. 1, pp. 6-7. https://doi.org/10.1108/mi.2018.7669

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018 T. Komori

License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0).


Corresponding author

Teruhisa Komori, Department of Stress and Health Science, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Tsu, Mie 514-8507, Japan. Tel.: +81.59.231.5095 - Fax: +81.59.231.5095.

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