Relaxation Methods and Autogenic Training

Written by on December 19, 2012 in Health - No comments | Print this page

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relaxation therapyThere are different methods and techniques to achieve a relaxed body and mind. There are several relaxation methods like guided imagery, progressive relaxation, self-hypnosis, deep breathing exercises, and biofeedback.

All of them have similar goal and that is to produce consciously the natural relaxation response of the body, characterized by slow breathing, feeling of well-being and calmness, and to lower blood pressure.

Autogenic Training

This method is focused on physical sensation of your heartbeat or breathing and picture the body as heavy, relaxed or warm. It teaches the body to respond to verbal commands. Its main goal is to reduce stress and achieve deep relaxation.

Biofeedback

The biofeedback-assisted relaxation makes use of electronic devices to guide you on producing relaxation response consciously. It is oftentimes used to relieve the conditions which are worsened or caused by stress.

Breath or deep breathing exercises

To relax through this method, you will slow your breathing consciously and then focus on taking deep and regular breaths.

Progressive relaxation

It is also referred to as progressive muscle relaxation or Jacobson’s progressive relaxation. Here, you are going to focus on relaxing and tightening every group muscle. It is usually combined with breathing exercises and guided imagery.

Self-hypnosis

Self-hypnosis makes you produce relaxation response with nonverbal cue or phrase. It can be used to relieve pain (labor, tension headaches, or minor surgeries) including treatment of irritable bowel syndrome and anxiety.

Guided imagery

You are focused on the pleasant images to replace any stressful or negative feelings and get relaxed. It is directed by the practitioner or you by descriptions or storytelling which is designed to suggest some mental images or visualization.

Relaxation methods may work in different ways. In contrast to stress response, the relaxation response on the other hand may:

  • Lower blood pressure
  • Slow the heart rate
  • Decrease the levels of stress hormones and oxygen consumption

Since relaxation is entirely the opposite of stress or anxiety, the theory is voluntarily making relaxation response by the regular use of relaxation methods that can counteract the negative effects of stress. The body and mind practices are sometimes considered as relaxation methods or techniques. If you want to get more information about these techniques and practices, you may refer to different sources which tackle relaxation and everything about it. It will help you a lot to live life enthusiastically and be able to manage anxiety and stress.

This is a guest post.  James is a writer and blogger with 5 years experience.

Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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