By: Janell Strupp PT, CPI
Use this simple tool to achieve general relaxation and manage stress.
Anyone can do it! (Simple, quick, No equipment needed, Do it anywhere.)
- Lie down or sit with your back supported comfortably.
- Place the tip of your tongue against the roof of your mouth, just behind your upper front teeth, keeping it there through the entire exercise.
- Exhale through your mouth around your toungue; try pursing your lips slightly.
Disclaimer: *This exercise is meant only as a guide. If you are suffering with a severe or chronic sleep disturbance, stubborn pain or other physical limitations, please contact a health care specialist to get individualized help and guidance with the condition.
- Exhale completely through your mouth making a whoosh sound (as if you are steaming up a mirror with your breath)
- Inhale through your nose, fill the depths of your lungs, and widen the breath into your back for a mental count of 4.
- Remain still not breathing in or out, “the breath is lightly held without bearing down” for a count of 7.
- Exhale completely through the mouth making a whoosh sound to a count of 8.
This is one breath. Now inhale again and repeat the cycle 3 more times for a total of 4 breaths.
Source: Sutherland Cranial Teaching Foundation
Photo source: anatomist W.H. Lizars
Note: The image to the right shows how the diaphragm (your main breathing muscle) extends all the way from the front to the back. This may help visualize how important it is to "breathe into your back."
Are the numbers important?
Why should I do it?
Physical Therapy May Help with Sleep
Physical Therapy may be considered (for a comprehensive evaluation and treatment plan which may include 1:1 manual techniques such as Fascial Counterstrain, Craniosacral therapy, or Visceral Manipulation). A variety of clients often report improvement in the quality and quantity of their sleep after attending the recommended course of physical therapy.
Consult with a health care practitioner for further questions or if you experience continued difficulty sleeping.
Janell Strupp PT, CPI
Total Health Wellness Center