If you have ever experienced anxiety or stress, you may have heard of a breathing technique called box breathing. Box breathing is a powerful relaxation tool that can help reduce stress and improve concentration. Let’s take a look at what box breathing is, how to do it, and the benefits of using this technique.

What Is Box Breathing?

Box breathing (also known as square breathing) is a type of deep-breathing exercise that is designed to provide calmness and clarity by slowing down your breath. The technique involves inhaling for four seconds, holding your breath for four seconds, exhaling for four seconds, and then holding your breath again for another four seconds before repeating the cycle. Each cycle is said to represent one side of an imaginary “box,” hence the name box breathing.

How To Do Box Breathing

To practice box breathing, start by finding a comfortable place to sit with your back straight and feet flat on the floor. Close your eyes if it helps you relax more easily. You can either rest your hands on your lap or place one hand on your belly and the other hand on your chest. Then take a deep breath in through your nose for four seconds, hold it for four seconds, exhale through your mouth for four seconds, and then hold again for another four seconds before repeating the cycle. As you practice this exercise more often, you may find that it becomes easier to complete each part of the cycle without having to count in between breaths. You can also work up to doing multiple cycles per session if desired.

The Benefits Of Practicing Box Breathing

Box breathing has been shown to reduce symptoms of stress and anxiety by calming both mind and body. It can also be used as a way to increase focus and concentration as well as enhance mental clarity by allowing more oxygen into the bloodstream which helps fuel brain cells. 

In addition, box breathing encourages mindfulness—a state of being aware of oneself in relation to the present moment—which can be beneficial when dealing with difficult emotions or situations because it allows us to pause before reacting impulsively or irrationally. 

Finally, regular practice of this exercise may even lead to better sleep since it helps our bodies reach a relaxed state faster than usual so we are able fall asleep more quickly without worrying about falling asleep too late or not getting enough restful sleep during our nights off from work or school activities.

Navy Seals And Box Breathing

Navy Seals use box breathing because it is a powerful tool for managing stress and controlling their physical and emotional responses during stressful situations. The technique helps the body remain relaxed, alert and focused even during difficult or physically demanding missions. 

Box breathing requires an individual to take four slow breaths – breathing in for a count of four, holding for four counts, exhaling for four counts and finally pausing for four seconds – which oxygenates the brain, calms the nervous system and improves concentration. By adjusting their breathing patterns, Navy Seals are able to manage their arousal levels before confronting a dangerous situation. 

Other benefits include reducing fatigue which enables them to perform better in the field and allows better control over their bodies’ responses when performing dangerous tasks in extreme environments, making box breathing the perfect technique choice for the operations of such highly trained special forces personnel.


Box breathing is an easy yet effective way to bring calmness into our lives while reducing symptoms of stress and anxiety. Not only does this exercise help us become more mindful but it also encourages deeper breaths which help fuel brain cells with oxygen that can lead us towards increased focus and concentration as well as enhanced mental clarity overall! With regular practice of box breathing we can all benefit from its relaxing effects leading us towards better quality sleep at night too! So why wait? Give box breathing a try today!

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