By Dirk Smith, MSc, SDL (He/Him).
Slow Paced Breathing or SPB for short is a relaxation technique in which slow and purposeful breaths are used to help increase Vagal Tone which has been shown to help reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. Vagal Tone is a measurement of the activity of the central nervous system, specifically the parasympathetic nervous system that is responsible for the regulation of the body at rest. This includes heart rate reduction, dilation/constriction of blood vessels, activity regulation in the heart, lunges, digestive tract, liver, immune system and other parts of the body. To summarize, when Vagal Tone is increased, the body is in a more restful and relaxed state.
Coach Dirk, CSCS, is a sport psychology expert, performance coach, teacher, writer, journalist, and athlete. He brings over 10 years of experience as a coach, athlete, personal trainer, fitness instructor, and sports psychologist to drive athletes to build their own self efficacy and express themselves through sport. Learn more about Dirk here!