THE SCIENCE
BEHIND
BREATHESYNC

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YOUR BREATH IS A VITAL CONNECTION BETWEEN YOUR HEART AND MIND.

Learn to cope with stress better and recover faster.

BreatheSync is the first biofeedback breathing app in the world that requires no additional hardware and also gives you a measurement of your wellbeing. Underneath its simple exterior lies some science that we thought you might like to know about. 

Breathing creates the platform on which everything else – health, happiness, cognitive ability and elevated performance, success and influence – is built.
— Dr Alan Watkins

1. BREATHE SLOWLY


Our breath is a crucial link between our mind and our body.

It’s the only system in the body that works both consciously and unconsciously. It affects how all our other internal systems work (digestion, the immune system, heart, nerves, brain etc.).

It both reflects and influences whatever is going on at any given moment in our minds and bodies. The table below illustrates how you feel is affected by your breathing and how you breathe affects how you feel.

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In as little as one minute of focused breathing it’s possible to completely clear the bloodstream of the stress hormone cortisol.
— Tony Schwartz, Harvard Business Review

Increasingly health authorities are also picking up on the power of our breath. In the USA, the FDA have approved device-guided breathing to lower blood pressure. The NHS in the UK recommends 3-4 minutes, 2-3 times a day for stress and anxiety. 

Read more about How to Breathe.


2. BE PRESENT


Whatever you want to do with your life, if you can’t control where you place you attention you won’t be able to make the changes you desire.

Recent research from Microsoft has shown that human beings now have attention spans lower than goldfish. Luckily, you can train your brain through mindfulness techniques. The simplest is just paying attention to your breath. With BreatheSync you are learning to focus visually on the circles, aurally on the sounds and viscerally on the feeling of breathing in your body.

Dr David Cox, Head of Wellbeing and Mindfulness at Audible, and ex-Chief Medical Officer of Headspace, explains the mechanics of attention training in his article The Meditation Cycle.
 You can see how this works in the chart below.

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Focussed breathing has also been shown to improve cognitive function so can help with your productivity too.  And with a reduction in background mental chatter, your mind will feel more clear at the same time.

So, if you find meditating for 20 mins too much on a daily basis, maybe just a few minutes of  BreatheSync is just the thing for you.


3. relax and unwind


The Autonomic Nervous System is the bodies way of coping with life.

There are 2 branches:

1. The Stress Response
2. The Relaxation Response

Our stress response is working overtime. It’s designed for life-threatening situations and yet we trigger it many times every day over relatively trivial things. 

Our relaxation response is sadly underused. Our ability to cope with stress and recover from it is being challenged.

By breathing slowly and deeply and lengthening our exhalations we trigger the Relaxation Response - our heart rate slows, our muscles relax and our minds naturally calm down.

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BreatheSync creates an optimal rhythm, personalised to you, that guides your body back to a more relaxed place fast.  Research has shown this maximises the positive impact of your breath on your body and mind. Your body will pay you back with a stronger immune system, less stress and anxiety, a healthy sex-drive, better sleep and improved digestion.

Why wait to relax at the end of the day? Research into productivity shows that workers who stop for a few minutes every hour are more productive than those who don’t. 

Maybe it’s time to relax on the job a little more?


4. more resilienT


Our hearts have rhythms.

Our heart rate is always changing. Unfortunately, it’s often chaotic like the chart below. This often arises when we’re not feeling great - at times of stress, anxiety or feeling overwhelmed.

  Chaotic Heart Rhythm (before BreatheSync)

Chaotic Heart Rhythm (before BreatheSync)

When we are feeling in flow - either focussed and excited or relaxed and calm - our heart rhythm takes on a more flowing and smooth state. This also happens when we bring our breathing and heart rhythms into sync. So when you breathe in your heart rate rises, when you breathe out your heart rate falls.  BreatheSync gets you into sync faster as the breathing pacer is driven by your heart rhythm and timed to perfection for you. This makes you more able to cope with the challenges and demands of everyday life. You can see what this affect looks like in the graph below.

  Coherent Heart Rhythm (during BreatheSync)

Coherent Heart Rhythm (during BreatheSync)

With BreatheSync you are learning to rapidly control your emotional state by bringing your inner systems into balance and coherence. With less cortisol, the stress inducing hormone, and more DHEA, the vitality hormone, you will feel more positive emotional states, as shown below.



5. Measure your wQ

WQ is your Wellbeing Quotient, an indicator of your general wellbeing and resilience.

Every heart beat is a little different. The gaps between beats changes. And the weird thing is that’s really good for us. The measurement of these gaps is called Heart Rate Variability (HRV) and it’s use is growing in sports science, health and wellbeing.

Research in Germany in 2015 showed HRV to be the best biomarker for Physical Health, Emotional Wellbeing and Cognitive Performance. It is also an indicator of longevity of life. Simon, one of the co-founders, is also founder of iThlete that specialises in HRV measurement for elite athletes. When HRV is low its best for athletes to rest, when high they can train harder.

BreatheSync creates a reading called Wellbeing Quotient (WQ) based on analysing your HRV whilst breathing combined with your age.

And like athletes provides you with an indication of whether you need to rest, relax and recovery or go for it!

We have even started to monitor the worlds wellbeing with the World WQ - here is the latest:

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See where you are in comparison with a one minute BreatheSync now.

We are on a mission to getting the world breathing better so you can focus and relax when you need to. As only then can we reach our potential to be more creative, productive, calm and successful. And the world needs that too.

Breathe well. Be well. Do well.