1-Minute Breathing Exercise for Energy and Productivity

Breath and productivity go hand in hand. Incorrect breathing not only reduces your productivity levels; it can also lead to an increase in your heart rate, the same way sleep apnea quickens the pulse as the body struggles to take in oxygen.

Yoga breathing techniques offer a practical solution. Yoga has become a common form of stress management and exercise for overworked executives, and you can practice yogic breathing exercises without going to a yoga class.

Try this 1-minute breathing exercise to boost blood oxygen and productivity

Professional yoga therapist Felice Rhiannon uses this one-minute breath practice whenever she’s feeling frazzled or restless. It is a centering activity based on a slow inhalation and an incremental increase in the length of exhalations.

Inhale to the count of two
Exhale to the count of two
Inhale to the count of two
Exhale to the count of three
Inhale to the count of two
Exhale to the count of four
Inhale to the count of two
Exhale to the count of five

Repeat several times, then return to your normal breathing. Your improved breathing will help regulate the oxygen flow in your blood, making you more alert. With a sharper focus, you can stay on task and make fewer mistakes, saving you time in the long run.

From The Power of Slow by Christine Louise Hohlbaum. Copyright © 2009 by the author and reprinted by permission of St. Martin’s Press, LLC.

Related Links

Pranayama yogic breathing technique how-to — a podcast sampler guided by yoga expert Colleen Saidman

Ujayii Breathing How-To by yoga expert Jill Miller

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