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  • Sit or recline comfortably, and exhale slowly and fully through pursed lips.
  • Imagine a candle flame about 6 inches (15 cm) from your mouth and blow a thin stream of air at it.
  • As you exhale, count silently to establish the length of the out-breath.
  • When you have exhaled fully, without strain, pause for a count of ‘one’, then inhale through the nose. Full exhalation creates a ‘coiled spring’, making inhalation easier.
  • Count to yourself to establish how long your inbreath lasts.
  • Without pausing to hold the breath, exhale slowly and fully, through pursed lips, blowing the air in a thin stream, and pause for a count of one.
  • Repeat the inhalation and exhalation for not less than 30 cycles (morning and evening).
  • After some weeks of daily practice, you should achieve an inhalation phase which lasts 2–3 seconds, and an exhalation phase of 6–7 seconds, without strain.
  • Exhalation should always be slow and continuous; there is little value in breathing the air out in 2 seconds and then simply waiting until the count reaches eight before inhaling again.
  • Practice twice daily, and repeat the exercise for a few minutes (6 cycles takes about 1 minute) every hour if you feel anxious, or when stress or pain increases.
  • Practice on waking, and before bedtime, and if at all possible before meals.
  • Always incorporate methods that reduce over-activity of neck/shoulder  muscles, as described below.
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