Rebecca Dennis will be running two transformational breathing sessions in our Ancient Space. We caught up with her before she set off for Bali, when she revealed how transformation breathing helped her overcome depression, explained how our bodies react when we don’t breathe properly and offered us some simple advice how to incorporate transformational breathing into everyday life.
Tell us a bit about yourself and breathing tree?
I am an author, Transformational Breath coach and founder of www.breathingtree.co.uk I teach Transformational Breath, a powerful cutting edge breath technique which helps people to clear restricted breathing patterns, release physical and emotional tension and reach higher states of awareness. I teach workshops, run retreats and see people for one on one sessions in London.
When did you realise the benefits of transformation breathing, what got you hooked?
I came across this work 9 years ago. I had been living with depression and had been on medication for 15 years. I tried all sorts of therapies and nothing seemed to work or was just a temporary fix. I walked into a Transformational Breath workshop one day and excuse the pun but it literally blew me away. It helped to alleviate my depression and come off the medication which I thought I would be on for the rest of my life. It has helped expand my yoga and meditation practice and be more focussed and positive. I studied bodywork and physiology for years and this is by far the most powerful healing work I have come across.
Has your practice changed over time?
I practice this every day and I find breathwork is an extraordinary tool that assists me with daily challenges and helps to expand my creativity and trust my intuition. We can’t always control what is going on around us however we can help control how we feel and deal with situations by responding as opposed to reacting and be more in the moment.
Where are most people going wrong with their breathing?
As we are all unique we all have our own breathing pattern a bit like our thumb print. Our breath pattern tells our story, shows where we are at in the world and which parts of ourselves we might be are shutting down. As a breath coach I am trained to see and tune into patterns. Some of us are chest breathers, others are belly breathers, shallow breathers, breath holders and so on. When we are babies our breath is full and flowing with no tension in the belly, chest, back and diaphragms. The breath is open and there are no restrictions. Teenagers and adults tend to be only using a third of their respiratory system and because when we are too busy or stressed we don’t breathe fully. When we are under stress it can create chaos in our physiology affecting our bodies systems such as our digestion, immune and nervous system. The brain is continuously sending streams of data to our body and vice versa. Our breath correlates with every emotion, feeling and experience. When we are aware of this we can help the systems of our body become more balanced and allow the breath to flow in the way our life can. The way we breath is indicative to the way we feel and it’s key for mental and physical wellbeing.
As wellness practices are becoming more and more popular, people are looking for ways we can embrace wellness into our everyday lives. Do you have any tips for people wanting to partake in transformational breathing for the first time and bring it into their daily routine?
This is something that you can use every day and even for just 1-2 minutes you will notice a difference. The more we practice the more we feel the benefits. I do encourage people to have a one on one first or find a workshop to fully understand the technique and benefits. I know that is not always possible for everyone which is why I was inspired to write my book ‘And Breath’ with simple exercises to bring it to a wider audience. Find a place where you are not going to be interrupted, feel relaxed and can let go and here’s a simple exercise to begin with.
Conscious Connected Breath Exercise
Transformational Breath is a cutting edge breath technique. Here’s a simple exercise you can practice on your own.
Prop yourself up on the bed at a semi-reclined angle with cushions or pillows behind you so your chest is higher than your legs.
Make sure you are warm and comfortable, and that your head and neck are supported.
Place your hands on your lower abdomen – a few inches below the navel. Relax the jaw and open the mouth wide and take a deep inhalation, belly should rise like a balloon, and exhale with a quick, gentle sigh.
Stay present with the inhale and the exhale. Inhalation should be about twice as long as the exhalation. Exhalation should be quiet and relaxed like a soft sigh.
Keep the breath connected so no pauses between breaths and coming in and out like a wave motion. Repeat up to 1-2 minutes and notice any physical sensations in the body.
Rest for one minute as you return to a normal breathing pattern – breathing through the nose.
Tell us what we can expect from your session/s at NewEarth Festival?
It’s always good not to expect with Transformational Breath as often we come for X, Y and Z and leave with A,B and C. This is a feeling exercise rather than a thinking exercise and a real opportunity to let go of whatever is standing in your way. Everyone will be having a different experience which is why I love this work so much and working in a group means the energy is really powerful. There are a multitude of benefits and what we can expect is to feel energised, let go of emotional baggage and blockages. Gain a sense of lightness, freedom and discover the essence of who we are. By expanding our breath we expand our awareness which can take us into higher states of consciousness.
Is this your first time in Bali? What are you looking forward to most?
Yes I am so excited to be coming to Bali and be part of NewEarth Festival. I’m not here for long so will be looking forward to meeting everyone, immersing myself in the festival and exploring the delights that Bali has to offer.