Breathing. You do it without thinking, but when you actually sit down to think about it, that easy, automatic activity is pretty incredible. With each inhale you’re bringing in fresh oxygen, and with each exhale you’re ridding your body of carbon dioxide, allowing every cell in your body to function and thrive. But the positive effects of breathing go beyond biology.
When a bit more mindfulness is added to that simple in-and-out, deep breathing has been shown to lower blood pressure, reduce stress, and lessen anxiety. In fact, one study found a short period of deep breathing can reduce systolic blood pressure by 3.4 to 3.9 mmHg within minutes—which means your breath can be a powerful calm-down tool. But not just any breathing will do. Those inhales and exhales need to be deep, slow, and even.
To help you get your breath in rhythm, Fitbit is introducing a new on-device guided breathing experience called Relax. Exclusively available on Fitbit Charge 2, Fitbit Blaze and Fitbit Ionic, Relax helps you find moments of calm with a personalized guided breathing session based on your heart rate.
Each session is powered by PurePulse and personalized by using your real-time heart rate to measure your heart rate variability (beat-to-beat changes in your heart rate), and determine a comfortable breathing rate for you.
You can choose from two-minute or five-minute sessions that display biofeedback and animations and use vibrations to help you align each inhale and exhale with the guide—so you can get the most out of your breathing experience. And at the end of each session, you’ll get feedback on how well you followed the guide.
Doing guided breathing sessions regularly can bring more mindfulness to your busy life. And the result could be a healthier, calmer, more focused you—all from just a few minutes of inhales and exhales each day.
This article is not intended to substitute for informed medical advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or condition. Always check with your doctor before changing your diet, altering your sleep habits, taking supplements, or starting a new fitness routine.