Questions & Answers Regarding RESPIRE I and Coherent Breathing


1.      What is RESPIRE I? Respire I is the first Breathing Pacemaker™ therapeutic audio recording by COHERENCE®.  It promotes the practice of “Coherent Breathing”.

2.      What is Coherent Breathing? Coherent Breathing is a breathing modality that directly results in autonomic nervous system balance and cardiopulmonary resonance. 

3.      What is autonomic nervous system balance? The autonomic nervous system comprises “sympathetic” and “parasympathetic” branches.  The sympathetic branch is associated with activation of bodily systems and the parasympathetic branch is associated with deactivation of bodily systems.  Autonomous actions include governance of heartbeat rate, arterial constriction, dilation of lung bronchi, digestion, etc.  Under ideal circumstances, sympathetic and parasympathetic branches work in harmony to achieve and maintain balance.  Cardiopulmonary resonance is an indication of autonomic balance.

4.      Why is autonomic balance important? Generally, autonomic balance is associated with "calm" and "relaxation" whereas "imbalance" is associated with "stress" and "fight or flight".  The emerging medical understanding is that many modern day maladies are rooted in autonomic imbalance, specifically “sympathetic dominance”, i.e., chronic over-activation of bodily systems.  Sympathetic dominance results in illness, reduced quality of life, and reduced longevity.

5.      How does breathing influence autonomic balance? While in a state of rest or semi-activity, the autonomic nervous system takes its cue from the frequency of breathing, the faster the breathing frequency, the greater the sympathetic emphasis.  The relationship between breathing and autonomic nervous system action during rest closely resembles that during exercise in this regard.  Most adults breathe at the rate of 15 breaths per minute, a frequency that the autonomic nervous system interprets as “fight or flight”, this directly resulting in “sympathetic emphasis”.  Generally, fast shallow breathing increases sympathetic emphasis and slow deep breathing reduces sympathetic emphasis.

6.      How is Coherent Breathing better than just breathing slowly?  While in the state of rest or semi-activity there is one frequency that results in optimal autonomic balance and cardiopulmonary resonance, this frequency being essentially the same for all adults.  It is 5 cycles in 1 minute or 1 cycle in ~12 seconds.  Coherent Breathing is a novel and unique modality that involves breathing at this specific frequency.  The Breathing Pacemaker may be thought of as a “metronome” for breathing.  RESPIRE I presents 3 distinct “Breathing Pacemaker” recordings that support the retraining and promotion/maintenance of Coherent Breathing with resultant autonomic balance and sound health.