Relaxation the Debenham Way
(Based upon a collaboration with
Margaret Samain
and the advice of Headway and the NHS)

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Deep relaxation is the key to the release of muscular, emotional and mental tensions. Studies have shown that relaxation is associated with slower respiratory rate, lowers blood pressure and heart rate, improves sleep, calms the nervous system and helps to eliminate panic attacks.

Worry, tension and anxiety raise levels of stress hormones within the body. Stress hormones are extremely useful in the short term — say in a dangerous situation — but are toxic in the long term and need to be switched off.
There has been a good deal of research to show that relaxation encourages good functioning of the immune system. The 'letting go' that happens in the stillness of deep relaxation, assists the immune system to recover and function better, also helping medication to work more effectively.

Most   people find it difficult to relax. Relaxation is a skill, and like any skill it needs to be learned.
There is a wide variety of relaxation techniques and breath awareness practices to help, but remember 'one size doesn't fit all', and it may take a little while for you to find a technique that works for you.

The key to using relaxation techniques regularly is to build them into your lifestyle. The motivation for sticking with it comes from the result you get. If possible, give yourself the time to relax deeply every day for 15 — 20 minutes.

These exercises can help to relieve tension, recharge your batteries and generally help you feel calmer and better!

The following exercises use Abdominal Breathing as opposed to Chest Breathing. This is when we use our tummy muscles to push up and pull down our diaphragm and so suck and expel the air from our lungs. To learn more about this and how we do it, see the attached guide.

The course consists of 4 techniques:

1. Breathing Relaxation – Calming your body and mind  using a controlled breathing pattern

2. Diaphragmatic / Abdominal Breathing – Breathing naturally and efficiently using your tummy muscles

3. Body-Scan Relaxation – Becoming aware of your whole body and consciously relaxing tension

4. Focused Meditation

Click on the titles to open the documents


For more information provided by the NHS about abdominal breathing please click on NHS advice on Abdominal Breathing

 Margaret Samain 2020