Frequently asked questions
Are there anyone who should not try Conscious Connected Breathing?
Conscious Connected Breathing / Conscious Breathwork may result in certain physiological changes in the body and can also result in intense emotional or physical release. Therefore, it is advisable to contact me before a session if any of the following conditions relate to you currently:
-Prior diagnosis of Bipolar disorder or schizophrenia
-High blood pressure that is not controlled by medication
-Prior Heart Attack
-Not grounded in reality, i.e psychotic
-Past stroke, seizure or neurological condition or disease
Please note, Conscious Breathwork has been known to reduce hypertension and also decrease asthma symptoms.
What happens in a Conscious Breathwork session/workshop?
The process itself uses a simple technique which consists of connecting the inhale and the exhale, with no pauses between the two.
In comfortable clothes, lying on your back with your eyes closed, you will connect with the rhythm of your breath to enter a non-ordinary state of consciousness. This state activates the natural inner healing process of the psyche, bringing you in a particular set of internal experiences. It can be a powerful experience, as it relies on your trust to let yourself go.
The session involves breath, movement, sound and conscious touch to increase
awareness and support the energy flow. With the inner healing intelligence guiding the process, the quality and content brought forth are unique to each person, in that particular time and place. A breathing session usually lasts for 45mins- 1 hour, ending with 10-15 mins of relaxation (savasana).
We end the session with a time of stillness to give your body and mind the opportunity to integrate and adjust to the biological and energetic changes. A perfect time to just be. You will have time at the end to discuss your experience and how you can incorporate a self practice into your daily life.
What sort of physical manifestations might happen during a Conscious Connected Breathing session?
In the first few sessions it is very common to have strong physical sensations; some call it physiological drama. The two most common are tetany (tension and cramping that focuses on the hands, arms, feet, legs and mouth) and anaesthesia (feeling sleepy during a session).
Tetany is the technical term for sensations of muscle cramping or numbness in the body. It is said to be a manifestation of suppressed emotions such a fear of life, anger, or suppressed rage. It is also said to be related to heavy birth trauma. Tetany occurs due to life force flowing through the body. Also referred to as Kriya Yoga, or mudras which forms involuntarily.
It is important to know here, that connected breathing does not cause the tetany or physical sensations experienced. It is the blocked energy, pain, stiffness, and tension already lying dormant in the body, which is coming out during the session. These remain suppressed by inhibited breathing patterns, which finally manifest as diseases, symptoms of deterioration, and aging.
According to Stanislov Grof (Founder of Holotropic Breathwork):
"What seems to happen is that faster breathing creates a biochemical situation in the body which faciliates emergence of old emotional and physical tension (tetany) associated with unresolved psychological and physical traumas...this situation actually represents a unique opportunity for healing. What emerges under these circumstances are unconsicous material with strong emotional charge that is most ready for processing."
From a mainstream medical viewpoint - tetany would be a result of alkalized environment created through faster and deeper than normal breathing within the session.
Some people have connected breathing sessions and don't experience anything at all. Most people get past the experience of their muscles cramping, tightening, and other physical sensations within their first ten sessions. Some people experience it much later on. This varies from person to person, depending on what healing they need at any given time. One is not better than the other; there is no right or wrong way to experience Conscious Breathwork. Each session will be completely unique as the process invokes a profound journey into whatever state of consciousness is relevant to the breather at that time.
Should I prepare or bring anything to a session?
-Most facilitators will suggest you wear loose, comfortable clothing. It is advisable not to eat a heavy meal immediately prior to a session, nor to drink alcohol during that day. Check with your facilitator about bringing blankets and pillows for comfort and if they want you to bring anything else and prepare in any way.
-Conscious Connected Breathing / Conscious Breathwork has been found to be an excellent cure for asthma, but if you have asthma it is recommended that you bring your inhaler with you, if that will enable you to feel more comfortable and secure.
-Eat something small at least an hour before the session starts. It is best not to have a full stomach during the session, this will direct internal energy towards digestion.
-You are welcome to bring along a pen and notepad if you feel like writing afterwards, this might aid in the integration process for certain individuals.
-Your own eyemask if you prefer (At Bodhi Breathwork & Yoga we provide eyemasks)
Does it always work?
Sometimes if a person can’t breathe deeply enough in the allotted time or they are too uncertain to fully relax into the process or they fall asleep they don’t activate the body memory.
However, benefit still occurs even if there is no activation as there is a release of tension and a movement towards the time when activation can occur, maybe a few sessions later. By analysing why activation did not occur reveals the patterns of belief that are stopping one from achieving. Each experience is perfect for you, regardless of what happens in the session. If the breath leads you to sleep, or whether resistance prevents you from entering into a transpersonal state, whatever experience unfolds is exactly what you need in that moment.
Why do we chant "OM"?
Om is a mantra, or vibration, that is traditionally chanted at the beginning and end of yoga sessions. … It’s both a sound and a symbol rich in meaning and depth and when pronounced correctly it is actually AUM.
Om is more than a sound, but the vibration of the universe. It is the frequency of energy that connects and joins all things together. It is not a short and sharp sound. It lingers and flows like energy itself. Ommmmmmmmmmmm…
To make Om, do not try to push air out through your vocal cords as if you were singing. Instead, let the energy within pass by your vocal cords and resonate and vibrate as the air in your lungs flows past them. It does not need to be loud or low. It does not need to be high or at a particular pitch. For everyone it is different..
I'm not flexible. Can I do Yoga?
Yes! You are a perfect candidate for yoga. Many people think that they need to be flexible to begin yoga, but that’s a little bit like thinking that you need to be able to play tennis in order to take tennis lessons.
Come as you are and you will find that yoga practice will help you become more flexible. This newfound agility will be balanced by strength, coordination, and enhanced cardiovascular health, as well as a sense of physical confidence and overall well-being.
What to expect from a one-on-one Conscious Breathwork session.
At the beginning of your session there will be time to discuss and share any concerns or circumstances, past or present, within your life, which may have influence over your current overall health status. The actual breathing process will then take place, usually with the client lying down, this can last for 30-90 minutes. Finally the most important part of your session, the summary, which encourages the client to reflect upon past experiences, to discuss any questions with the therapist and to make the connection from their session to their everyday life.
The Breathwork sessions can be one-to-one or group based. The practitioner will sit beside you during the breathing process to support and maintain a quietness of mind, enable the individual to focus on their breathing and to have acknowledgement of any word, memory, image or bodily sensations that are present. When an individual is supported and guided into breathing properly and into a part of their body that is mostly inactive, the client can become aware of many different and new sensations, ranging from emotional feelings, a deeper consciousness of their physical body, they may also feel a sense of a spiritual presence, or commonly a combination of these feelings.
Tips on Integration after a Breathwork session
1. BE GENTLE WITH YOURSELF
-Allow for sensitivity, openness and vulnerability
-Allow time for self-nurturing, be kind with yourself
-Allow yourself to be with whatever emotions and feelings arise, aknowlegde it
-Be mindful about integrating into normal 3D life
2. PRACTICE SELF-CARE AND SELF NURTURING
-Get adequate rest and sleep
-Drink plenty of water
-Eat nourishing foods
-Nurture your body (i.e. massage, bath)
-Exercise gently (i.e. walking, stretching, yoga)
-Spend time in nature if possible
-If it feels right, give yourself some quiet time and time for reflection
3. SUGGESTIONS TO STAY AND WORK WITH YOUR INNER PROCESS, IF YOU FEEL THIS URGE
-Pay attention to any “material” surfacing from your psyche
-Pay attention to messages from your dreams
-Write/journal - whatever comes up
-Put on music and allow your body to move/dance spontaneously and authentically
4. IF IT FEELS RIGHT, SHARE YOUR PROCESS/EXPERIENCE WITH SOMEONE YOU TRUST
-If you are currently working with a therapist and feel called to do so, you can make an appointment to share your breathwork experience
-Use discretion regarding whom you discuss your experience; avoid sharing with those whom would attempt to discount or invalidate your experience
5. AVOID MAKING ABRUPT OR IMPULSIVE DECISIONS
-Wait at least a week before making any important life decisions
-Dialogue with someone you trust about decisions you are considering and ask for objective feedback.
Importance of music in my Conscious Breathwork sessions
Music has the power to inspire, to connect, to heal and to change brainwave frequencies. As the facilitator, I take time to curate unique playlists that serves as a guiding force (together with your own breath) in the breathwork experience.
Usually there will be 3-5 parts to this magical, musical journey - each part having an impact on the breather's experience as he/she explores the sub-conscious mind.