5 Easy Breathing Exercises to Lower Blood Pressure

5 Easy Breathing Exercises to Lower Blood Pressure

When done for just five minutes a day, deep breathing exercises can lower blood pressure, boost vascular health, and sharply reduce your chances of developing cardiovascular disease. It almost sounds like an infomercial, but this is no gimmick. 

Extensive research shows that diaphragmatic breathing (aka abdominal breathing) has serious power when it comes to lowering blood pressure and has the potential to improve the health of billions across the globe.  

This article will explore how diaphragmatic breathing can naturally lower blood pressure, as well as share six simple yet highly effective breathing exercises you can start using today. 


What Is High Blood Pressure? 

More than 30 percent of the adult population worldwide, and nearly half of the U.S. population, experience a medical condition called high blood pressure, also known as hypertension.[*][*] The term “blood pressure” refers to the force of the blood pushing against the walls of the arteries. When someone is diagnosed with high blood pressure, it means the force of the blood on the veins is too high, specifically above 130/80 mmHg.

High blood pressure forces the heart to work harder and weakens the inside of the arteries, which can lead to life-threatening medical conditions like heart attacks and strokes. 

Several factors can contribute to high blood pressure, including smoking, a salty diet, obesity, stress, excessive alcohol consumption, and genetics. Fortunately, you can bring your blood pressure numbers down with lifestyle changes: exercising, limiting salt intake, maintaining a healthy diet, avoiding tobacco smoke, and practicing diaphragmatic breathing. 


How Does Diaphragmatic Breathing Affect Blood Pressure? 

To understand how breathing affects blood pressure, let’s examine what happens in the body when you take deep, diaphragmatic breaths.[*

  • You reduce the activity of your sympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for the “fight or flight” reflex.
  • You increase the activity of the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for the opposite reflex—“rest and digest.” When this happens, your heart rate decreases, your blood vessels dilate, and your breathing rate slows. 
  • You increase blood flow to your body’s tissues, which reduces resistance in your blood vessels. 
  • Your diaphragm moves up and down, facilitating blood flow towards the heart. 

The combination of the above bodily processes naturally lowers blood pressure. This isn’t mere conjecture either—numerous clinical research studies have documented the beneficial effects of slow, deep breathing on blood pressure.[*][*][*][*


Diaphragmatic Breathing Exercises for Lowering Blood Pressure

The following breathing exercises for high blood pressure can be done virtually any time, anywhere. Aim to practice diaphragmatic breathing for five to 20 minutes a day.

30-Second Breathing

According to a study involving 20,000 Japanese individuals, taking six deep breaths within 30 seconds can significantly reduce systolic blood pressure.[*] Systolic blood pressure is the top number in a blood pressure reading. It measures the force produced by the heart when it pumps blood through the body. 

How to practice: 

  1. Set a timer for 30 seconds. 
  2. Take six deep breaths, in through your nose and out through your mouth. 
  3. Repeat as needed throughout your day.  


Equal Breathing

Equal breathing, also known as box breathing, is a foundational deep breathing practice and a perfect exercise to begin with. As the name suggests, this technique focuses on taking steady inhalations and exhalations of equal duration. 

How to practice:

  1. Exhale slowly, releasing all the air from your lungs.
  2. Breathe in through your nose as you slowly count to four in your head.
  3. Hold your breath for a count of four.
  4. Exhale for a count of four.
  5. Hold your breath for a count of four.
  6. Repeat steps 2-5 for four rounds, or until you feel relaxed.


Alternate Nostril Breathing

Alternate nostril breathing is a yogic breath control practice that entails alternating breaths between the two nostrils. In a study of people with hypertension, those who practiced alternate nostril breathing 20 minutes a day for five days experienced a marked reduction in systolic blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure—the bottom number of a blood pressure reading that reflects the pressure in the arteries when the heart rests between beats. The study participants also experienced a reduction in heart rate.[*

How to practice: 

  1. Raise your hand to your nose, as if you were going to pinch your nose shut with your thumb and pointer fingers. 
  2. Exhale fully and then close your right nostril with your thumb.
  3. Inhale through your left nostril.
  4. Open your right nostril and exhale through it while closing your left nostril with your pointer finger.
  5. Continue this rotation for five minutes.


Diaphragmatic Breathing with Somnox 

 If you feel like you could use some extra guidance in practicing diaphragmatic breathing, look no further than Somnox 2. Using robotic technology, this science-backed device expands and deflates as if it’s taking deep, diaphragmatic belly breaths. Somnox can be used to lower stress and induce relaxation any time of day, whether on your lunch break or before sleep

By simply cradling Somnox, you’ll unconsciously adopt the same slower-paced breathing rhythm. This reduces the activity of the sympathetic nervous system while increasing the activity of the parasympathetic nervous system. 

How to use: 

  1. Hold Somnox 2 and turn it on. Within minutes, you’ll subconsciously adopt its calm breathing pattern.
  2. Smart sensors respond to your breathing in real-time, matching your rhythm and gradually adjusting it to the ideal rate.
  3. Feel your nerves relax and tension release. 
  4. If you’re using it for sleep, continue deeply breathing until you fall asleep. With the help of Somnox 2, you’re sure to fall asleep quickly, stay asleep, and wake up feeling rested.

Take our online sleeptest to determine if Somnox is right for you. 


Breath Focus

This diaphragmatic breathing technique uses focus words, phrases, or images to induce relaxation. You can choose a focus image, word, or phrase that makes you feel relaxed or happy, or one that is simply neutral. 

Example words include “peace,” “calm,” or “relax.” You can also say a short phrase in your mind with each inhale and exhale. For example, “I breathe in calm” as you breathe in, and “I breathe out tension” as you exhale. Focus images may be something like a pristine, white sand beach or a calm lake.

How to practice: 

  1. Practice diaphragmatic breathing for a couple of minutes, breathing deep into your belly. 
  2. Begin the practice of breath focus by combining this deep breathing with your chosen word, phrase, or image. To do this, repeat your chosen word or phrase in your mind (or visualize your chosen image) while you continue to inhale and exhale.
  3. Continue for a few minutes or until you feel relaxed. 


Use Your Breath to Lower Your Blood Pressure

Diaphragmatic breathing is the quickest way to lower blood pressure without medications. Even more impressive is that it can lower blood pressure to a similar degree as blood pressure-reducing medications.[*]

Diaphragmatic breathing is especially beneficial if your high blood pressure is caused by stress or anxiety, but it will help regulate your blood pressure regardless of the cause. 

If you’re concerned about high blood pressure or the overall quality of your health, incorporate these simple breathing exercises into your routine starting today. You’re sure to be pleasantly surprised by how something so simple and natural can significantly impact your health and well-being

Somnox is Making a Difference: Research Shows Results

Somnox is Making a Difference: Research Shows Results

Since we launched Somnox, we’ve been dedicated to gathering feedback to see how it has improved people’s sleep. Recently, we sent out an Impact Survey to hear first-hand from our Dutch customers why they value Somnox and how they are interacting with it.

And the results are in! Our sleep companion is making a huge impact, with users reporting more relaxation and better sleep. But we discovered sleep is not the only thing people use Somnox for—people are using Somnox in creative ways.

Read on to learn more about how Somnox is changing lives and what it can do for you! 


How is Somnox helping?

We’re happy to report that Somnox is helping the vast majority of users with at least one aspect of their wellness. The results of our survey are based on the voluntary responses of 483 current Dutch Somnox users. Of this group, 48% have a Somnox 2, and 52% a Somnox 1.

Of Somnox 2 respondents, 94% reported that Somnox helps them sleep better (85% for non-daily users), 85% said Somnox helps them reduce stress, and 71% say they feel more energetic. Wow!


What does Somnox help with?

Sleep issues among Somnox run the gamut. Some people have trouble falling asleep, while others wake up in the middle of the night and can’t get back to sleep. Others wake up too early. Others just want to relax during the day to help manage their stress levels.

On average, respondents report that their Somnox helps with the following things:

  • 70% – helps them relax
  • 56% – fall asleep faster
  • 49% – help fall back asleep in the middle of the night
  • 25% – helps them sleep through the night


How attached are users to their Somnox?

In our survey, we asked users how they would feel if they could no longer use their Somnox. Of users, 80% said they would be disappointed if they could no longer use Somnox. This effect was strongest in the 65+ group.


How often are people using Somnox?

Of all active Somnox 2 users, 78% indicate they use the Somnox daily, while about 20% reported they used the product once a week or so. Older users were more likely to use their Somnox daily or even multiple times a day. 

We believe that increased usage in older adults is most likely due to the fact that older people wake up more often during the middle of the night.


When are people using Somnox?

Somnox is a sleep companion that is predominantly used in bed before sleep as well as during the night. When asked what part of the day people are using Somnox, more than 93% said they use Somnox in bed before sleep. Interestingly, 64% say they use their Somnox in the middle of the night as well.

For people under 50, especially among the 18-24 group, we saw relatively more use during the afternoon and evening. This could be because mindfulness practices, such as breathing exercises, are more popular with younger people. 

Some of our customers have mentioned using Somnox during the day for breathing to manage stress and anxiety. We think this is a great idea, and we are glad to hear people are using Somnox in creative ways!


What feedback are we receiving from customers?

We are receiving very positive feedback from many of our users and are so happy to hear their comments. 

Here’s what Somnox users are saying:

“So glad you came up with the Somnox!”

“Very nice product! It’s also good for relaxation exercises.”

“I am very happy with Somnox. Awesome invention and product for everyone, everywhere, all day long.”


Who is using Somnox?

We noticed some important differences between age and gender. 

We discovered that 79% of Somnox users are women. This makes sense because women are twice as likely to experience insomnia. Hormonal changes throughout a woman’s life—such as during pregnancy, menopause, or PMS—can cause sleep problems. 

And while gender roles are changing, women are also more likely to have an overlapping caregiver and work duties, which results in less time to unwind and sleep.

In terms of age, we found out that 65% of our users are over 50.  This is again in line with sleep statistics. As we age, our sleep patterns change—we sleep less overall and have more trouble falling and staying asleep.


What do people like about the Somnox app?

On the Somnox app, a couple of things that users can adjust are breathing intensity and breathing ratio (out-breath to in-breath). Breathing intensity was the most valued feature, with breathing ratio being the second most valued feature.

Somnox Sense, which is a feature that allows the Somnox to sync its breathing with yours, is the third most valued feature of the app.

Our older users love the starting rate and intensity features, while younger users value Somnox Sense and music options.


Impact results summary

From the results of our survey, we are thrilled to see an overwhelmingly positive response to Somnox. People are using it to help them get a better night’s sleep, feel more energetic, feel more relaxed, and reduce stress levels.

We love to hear that Somnox is making such a positive impact, helping our customers to lead healthier, happier lives.

If you’re curious about how Somnox might help you achieve better sleep or just want to give it a try for yourself, order your very own Somnox today. We offer a risk-free 30-day trial, so you can see for yourself how this little companion can make a big difference in your life.

Try Somnox for 30 days.



Somnox Impact Survey (2022)

Aging changes in sleep. (n.d.). Medline Plus. Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/004018.htm

Muller, A. (2018, October 2). Why Women Are Twice As Likely To Have Insomnia Than Men. Michigan Health. https://healthblog.uofmhealth.org/health-management/3-reasons-women-are-more-likely-to-have-insomnia#:%7E:text=D.&text=No%20matter%20how%20tired%20you,and%20stay%20asleep%20%E2%80%94%20as%20men