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5 Minute Breathing Exercise – Rick Rubin & Andrew Huberman

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Enhancing Heart Rate Variability: A Coherence Breathing Exercise

In this article, we explore a coherence breathing exercise designed to increase heart rate variability (HRV) and promote relaxation and well-being. Developed as a tool for enhancing HRV, this exercise offers a simple yet effective way to manage stress and improve overall health.

Cultivating Calm and Resilience

Understanding Heart Rate Variability

Heart rate variability refers to the variation in time intervals between consecutive heartbeats. Higher HRV is associated with better cardiovascular health, increased resilience to stress, and improved emotional regulation. Coherence breathing aims to increase HRV by promoting synchronization between the heart and the respiratory system.

The Coherence Breathing Exercise

  1. Preparation: Find a quiet and comfortable space where you can sit or lie down without distractions. Close your eyes to enhance focus and relaxation.

  2. Guided Breathing: Follow along with a guided audio or set a timer for the desired duration of the exercise. The typical duration is five to ten minutes.

  3. Breathing Rhythm: Inhale deeply through your nose for a count of six seconds, allowing your abdomen to expand fully. Then, exhale slowly and completely through your mouth for another count of six seconds.

  4. Coherent Breathing Pattern: Maintain a consistent breathing pattern, aiming for six breaths per minute. Focus on the rhythmic flow of your breath and the sensation of relaxation with each exhalation.

  5. Mindful Awareness: As you continue the breathing exercise, bring your attention to the present moment. Notice any sensations in your body, thoughts in your mind, and feelings that arise without judgment.

  6. Counting Technique: To maintain the coherence breathing pattern, you may choose to count the breaths silently in your mind. Counting each inhalation and exhalation can help anchor your awareness and deepen relaxation.

  7. Duration and Frequency: Aim to practice coherence breathing for at least five to ten minutes daily. Gradually increase the duration as you become more comfortable with the exercise. Some individuals find benefit from practicing twice a day, such as in the morning and before bedtime.

Benefits of Coherence Breathing

  • Increased HRV: Regular practice of coherence breathing can lead to higher heart rate variability, indicating improved autonomic nervous system function and stress resilience.

  • Stress Reduction: By promoting relaxation and activating the parasympathetic nervous system, coherence breathing helps reduce stress levels and promote emotional well-being.

  • Improved Focus and Mental Clarity: The rhythmic breathing pattern enhances mental clarity and focus, allowing for greater concentration and cognitive function.

  • Enhanced Mind-Body Connection: Coherence breathing fosters a deeper awareness of the mind-body connection, facilitating a sense of harmony and balance.


Incorporating coherence breathing into your daily routine can be a powerful tool for enhancing heart rate variability, managing stress, and promoting overall well-being. By dedicating a few minutes each day to this simple yet effective practice, you can cultivate calm, resilience, and inner peace in your life.

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