Breathwork has been used for thousand of years by various cultures and traditions.
The breathwork I use combines my training in Neurodynamic Breathwork with other practices I have worked with such as yoga and Vipassana meditation. Breathwork is a way of using your breath to access expanded states of awareness or what Stanislav Grof called "non-ordinary states of consciousness".
The non-ordinary state is one where you can let go a little and sometimes can help participants gain new perspective on issues they are struggling with, experience relief from trauma, or gain deeper insight into one's life purpose and direction.
"Breath is the bridge which connects life to consciousness, which unites your body to your thoughts"
- Thich Nhat Hahn
The Science of Breathwork
Although breathwork has been practiced for thousands of years we are just starting to understand it from the perspective of science. What we do understand is mostly based on what we understand from other studies of non ordinary states of consciousness.
Breathwork from what we understand seems to impact the body both physiologically and psychologically. Physiologically, it causes loss of CO2. When the body compensates, the process of CO2 creation lowers blood acidity so you blood becomes more alkaline.
The lower CO2 results in decreased oxygen and blood flow to some parts of the brain including parts of the frontal cortex and the default mode network (DMN).
When the DMN is suppressed, memories and emotion may surface including childhood traumas, floating from the unconscious to the surface of awareness so they can be worked on, processed, and released.
In addition, during breathwork, participants are instructed to give themselves permission to release. This has a powerful impact on the psyche and can result in a journey starting for a participant even before the breathing starts.
The science of breathwork is evolving and this practice although very powerful and ancient is still quite novel from a science perspective
Breathwork Assisted Psychotherapy (BAP)
BAP combines therapy sessions with breathwork. An ongoing psychotherapeutic relationship is required for safety and support during this intensive work. At Question it is our experience that breathwork can be a powerful complement to therapy.
*Breathwork is not a replacement for psychotherapy and should be practiced only to supplement therapy and other wellness practices in ones life.