Calming breathing is very important and helpful for children to learn. It can help them reduce stress, anxiety and panic in many different situations. There are different exercises they can try out to see which they like best. This is one of the easiest to learn and use.
The 5 calm breaths technique
5 calming breaths is a really simple breathing exercise that uses counting to help children focus on their breath. By counting on their fingers or in their heads as they breathe in and breathe out, children can calm their breath and begin to relax.
How 5 calm breaths can help
When we are anxious we can sometimes take lots of quicker and more shallow breaths. This exercise helps children focus on making those breaths deeper and longer- which can help them to feel calmer.
Like all calming breathing techniques- it is best to practice them when we feel calm. That way when the anxious feelings come we know what to do to help calm them down. Practising this exercise with children regularly helps them to feel confident about using it whenever they fell anxious or overwhelmed.
Introducing 5 Calm Breaths to Children
Here is a video of Zoe demonstrating how to practice the 5 Calm Breaths exercise.
You can also download and print this 5 Calm Breaths Tally Sheet to help encourage a child to practice every day and see their progress.