Abdominal, or belly breathing, is the most relaxing way for your body to breathe. Try following along with the deep breathing exercise in this short video so you can use this relaxation technique any time you need help falling asleep or quieting the nervous system.

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Jill Miller

Jill Miller, C-IAYT, ERYT is the co-founder of Tune Up Fitness Worldwide and creator of the self-care fitness formats Yoga Tune Up® and The Roll Model® Method. With more than 30 years of study in anatomy and movement, she is a pioneer in forging relevant links between the worlds of fitness, yoga, massage, athletics and pain management. She is known as the Teacher’s Teacher and has trained thousands of movement educators, clinicians, and manual therapists to incorporate her paradigm shifting self-care fitness programming into athletic and medical facility programs internationally. She has crafted original programs for 24 Hour Fitness, Equinox, YogaWorks, and numerous professional sports teams. She and her team of 500+ trainers help you to live better in your body with an emphasis on proprioception, mobility, breath mechanics and recovery. She has presented case studies at the Fascia Research Congress and International Association of Yoga Therapy conferences. She has the rare ability to translate complex physiological and biomechanical information into accessible, relevant moves that help her students transform pain, dysfunction and injury into robust fitness. Jill is the anatomy columnist for Yoga Journal Magazine and has been featured in Shape, Men’s Journal, Good Housekeeping, Women’s Health, Yoga Journal, Self, and on the Today Show and Good Morning America. Jill is regularly featured on the Oprah Winfrey Network. She is the creator of dozens of DVD’s including Treat While You Train with Kelly Starrett DPT and is the author of the internationally bestselling book The Roll Model: A Step by Step Guide to Erase Pain, Improve Mobility and Live Better in your Body. Based in Los Angeles, CA, she is a wife and mother of two small children and is currently writing her second book.

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Jennifer Mayer

I’ve been practicing abdominal thoracic breathing for about a year now, but this video taught me something I never knew; belly breathing “is the most sedating and tranquilizing way to breathe known to the human body”. I hope that simply knowing and focusing on this fact will help me relax and actually drift to sleep.


I have tried this technique on kids/tweens and it is the favorite part in the class. They sometimes even beg for more time to do it. I wish they had more time to do this during the day at school!


Thank you for this technique to combat stress and calm your nervous system down. A bolster is also a great option to help relax as well as release the lower back. This position is an easy, simple and effective way to get great results!

Max Bayuk

The bolster definitely makes a big difference for me in this exercise. I’m keeping mine on my bed now!

Jen F.

Thanks for this post! I have many nights of experiencing insomnia so I will be sure to use this technique to help me to relax and fall asleep.


Thanks for this post, I have definitely had periods of experiencing insomnia, so this will be a useful tool if/when this occurs and for general relaxation : )

Breathe Right For Better Sleep | ECA World Fitness | One Body One World

[…] Reposted with permission from Jill Miller’s Yoga Tune Up Blog […]


I find belly breathing incredibly relaxing and do use it on nights when I can’t fall asleep. But there are nights that the rise and fall seem a bit more challenging. Another way to engage the parasympathetic nervous system would be to look at breath length, not just abodes of breathing. Focusing on a longer exhale than inhale turns on the parasympathetic nervous system even if you are in thoracic breathing, for those nights when belly breathing is simply a struggle.

Breathe Right For Better Sleep | ECA World Fitness

[…] Reposted with permission from Jill Miller’s Yoga Tune Up Blog […]

melanie sloane

Yes! I loved simply repeating “rise, fall” as my belly went up nd down. I felt that I was letting go of all other thoughts and focusing on the words and the feeling inside my belly. I felt very relaxed


I will be using your tenique this evening to fall asleep and be rested for a wonderful day of learning tomorrow. So, far this is an amazing journey for me. And I hope I can pass this along to my students. Goodnite Caroline B.


i like the use of the bolster in the video, really helps emphasize the relaxing nature of the breathing and position

easy, effective, enjoyable 😉