Homeschooling Helpers: Deep Breathing Strategies for Children
I have to admit that before I watched the presentation by James T. Griffin on December 16, 2021 during the Education Think Tank Meeting, I had not realized all the ways that deep breathing can improve your quality of life, and positively ‘tune’ the brain and body, as well as how ot use it to accelerate the ability to helpf children learn. Before I watched his presentation I wondered how a whole course could be made about deep breathing, but by the end of his presentation I had completely changed my mind.
In James’ opinion, deep breathing is the most important, and most underestimated, exercise you can do in a day.
During the Education Think Tank presentation on December 16, 2021, James walked us through the myriad of benefits deep breathing offers, and took us through a Qi gong and Chi gong deep breathing pattern that was impressive in how hypnotic and effective it was to relax and re-energize and re-invigorate the mind and body. The positive effects of this kind of breathing are irrefutable.It’s such a simple but profound routine to add into a day.
James has developed an approach to breathing, hypnosis and learning a ‘proactive approach to wellness’.
Types of Deep Breathing
There are many kinds of deep breathing practices, including the breathing strategies in Yoga, Tibetan meditation, Vim Hoff style of breathing, and Qi Gong.
James practices what he calls Proactive- Wellness Deep Breathing, which is based on his years of training in Qi Gong and Chi Gong.
The pattern lasts for a count of 15. As James counts, you do the breathing he describes.
The patterns James uses are designed to be cumulative, and when one pattern is too easy, there is another, more difficult pattern to try. In this manner it is possible to strengthen the lungs.
One of the benefits of using James’ recorded exercises is that it takes away the need to think and count. You can just follow along and focus on your breath. Even James uses a recording of his counting so he can concentrate on simply breathing.
Why is Deep Breathing so Effective?
James provided further explanation about Qi Gong and why it is effective. Basically, Qi Gong is slow fluid movements combined with regulated deep breathing, visualization and intention.
Qi gong practices increase the flow of ‘Qi’ or Bio Energy, also called ‘life force energy’ in the body. In doing so, it increased immunity and the body’s ability to heal and regenerate, and helps increase overall body awareness. This pattern of breathing can release bio electricity and energy blockages along your meridians.
Many Benefits to Deep Breathing
Did you know that deep breathing can actually slow down cellular and cognitive aging? James mentioned that we have three kinds of aging: calendar aging cognitive aging and cellular aging. With deep breathing exercise, not only can cognitive and cellular aging be slowed down, research shows it can actually be reversed.
Here is a quick summary of some of the other benefits deep breathing offers:
– Deep breathing increases energy levels, and balances out energy levels in children who are hyperactive.
– Deep breathing can increase focus and concentration. How exactly does this increase concentration? James explained that when children listen to his voice as he counts through the breathing pattern, they are forced to focus on only one thing, and this indirectly helps them increase their ability to concentrate and focus and encourages awareness of the body.
– Deep breathing allows many people are able to release all emotional energy – negative such as stress or emotional energy picked up from others around us.
– Deep breathing brings more oxygen into the body, which strengthens overall immunity.
– It improves lung strength. James offers different patterns to use as your lung strength improves.
How Hypnosis Accelerates Learning
James also described how hypnosis can be used with deep breathing to help children to learn faster.
While I had heard that hypnosis works on a deep subconscious level, on par with deep meditation, I didn’t really know how, or why, it works from a scientific perspective.
James explained that our whole society is programmed to stay in Beta brainwave mode, and to worry about tomorrow, feel guilt about yesterday and not think about now, the present moment. If we can get into
Lower level Theta brainwaves are how to consciously access and communicate with the body’s natural intelligence. If we can get out of Beta brainwaves, we are better able to learn. Hypnosis can be used to improve confidence and creativity through positive affirmations.
The secret to accelerating learning in children, and creating a higher probability of remembering the general points of the class when they need to remember it, is to do a short hypnosis session as he describes 10 minutes before the end of class.
To do this, James recommends beginning with relaxation, perhaps lying on the floor, or a relaxing yoga pose, or ask the students to put their heads down on the desk or table. Then countdown from a chosen number. Follow the countdown with a guided meditation to review the general points of the lesson will greatly enhance overall retention of the lesson.
This process moves the information from the conscious to subconscious, or from the brain to the heart, so it’s easier to retrieve that this information when it is needed. James adds that this allows students to ‘working smarter rather than working harder’.
This information session was so jam packed with information and helpful tips and strategies, I listened to it twice.
Here is a link to the Education Think Tank presentation : https://youtu.be/0255tSEA13o
(his presentation begins after the Think Tank introductions, at the 14 minute mark).
As an added bonus, in the description box below the video where he describes deep breathing techniques and free examples of deep breathing exercise, James has generous included links to a course he is offering for free on his website about Deep Breathing.
Here is the link to the free course about Deep Breathing : https://youtu.be/67qzAnn_xPM https://youtu.be/67qzAnn_xPM
Thank you, James!