Anxiety can wreak havoc on your emotions and your health. And it’s no surprise that asana can help you feel centered and calm. But rolling out your mat isn’t the only stress-banishing tool in your yoga arsenal. Breathing exercises for anxiety—pranayama—can usher in calm in minutes.
Deep breathing is one of the best ways to curb stress. Just focusing on your inhalations and exhalations can be soothing. But specific breathing exercises are particularly beneficial for combatting anxiety. So the next time you feel frazzled, tune into your breath with these exercises for anxiety.
Squash Anxiety with This Sama Vritti Breathing Exercise
Make yoga teacher Caren Baginski ‘s soothing 10-minute Sama Vritti practice when anxiety rears its head. This breathing exercise from Judith Hanson Lasater is a balancing pranayama that you can do seated or lying down.
Self-Soothe with Box Breathing
Box Breathing is a favorite of Navy Seals in high-stress situations. Yoga teacher Kat Bates takes you through the anxiety-banishing exercise in this calming, grounding, five-minute practice.
Ease Anxiety with Alternate-Nostril Breathing
Dr. Suprina Sheth explains the balancing powers of Nadi Shodhana Pranayama (alternate-nostril breathing) and offers thorough guidance in this 6-minute video.