Holotropic Breathwork – What is it? How Does it Work?

At The Anti-Burnout Club we love breathwork and have regular lessons and breathwork workshops. However, have you ever heard of Holotropic Breathwork (HB)? This unique practice has an interesting history and is used for a variety of different reasons. Here is everything you need to know about Holotropic breathwork, including what it is, how it works, what it’s used for and how to find a practitioner.

What is Holotropic Breathwork?

Holotropic Breathwork is a type of therapy that involves breathing as the patient enters an altered state of consciousness. It is used to address physical and emotional issues, and even spiritual ones! Holotropic Breathwork is a combination of breathwork and psychotherapy. It is a practice that is used to help people recover from trauma and experience deep, profound healing.

Holotropic breathing was developed by Stanislav Grof who was also involved in LSD research. The technique has since been used for various purposes such as healing addiction, anxiety, depression, and more. Grof showed how it was able to help patients appreciate their dream-like experiences and lead them towards insights into the nature of reality, after the ban on LSD in the late 1960s. 

During his experiments, he discovered that LSD could provide a significant spiritual experience. As he was exploring this new method of using LSD, he discovered that it provided a state of consciousness which allows one to enter into what he later named Holotropic States and thereby allowing the participant to explore their unconscious processes and resolve traumas from it’s past.

Holotropic Breathwork stimulates the production of DMT, a hallucinogenic substance in our brains which can be used to access other states of consciousness beyond the normal waking state.

Holotropic Breathwork is a psychotherapy technique that helps people to explore the unconscious and integrate its contents. It can be used for healing trauma, addiction and other problems.

Why You Should Consider Holotropic Breathwork as a Tool for Healing and Transformation

Holotropic breathwork is a type of therapy that helps people release the trauma and memories of their past by using breath work and meditation. It has helped many people with depression, addictions, PTSD, anxiety, and trauma.

Even though this healing practice is relatively new to mainstream culture it has been used in Eastern European countries for hundreds of years. This type of therapy was originally developed as an alternative treatment for PTSD by its founder Stanislav Grof.

Holotropic breathwork is a transformative work that can be done at home or in a clinic like any other professional therapy. A typical session lasts for about 20 minutes and you will experience an altered state, time distortion, altered perceptions, hallucinations, sensory experiences, and spiritual insight during the process. There are also some breathwork workshops available for those who want to experience holotropic breathing in a group setting. 

Holotropic Breathwork is a process of deep inner work that facilitates profound healing and transformation. It is a powerful tool that allows people to move from the current state of being to an entirely new, more optimal one.

This is a type of therapy that helps people heal from trauma, addiction, and other major life struggles. It’s a type of therapy that is done in the presence of an experienced guide who guides the client through a series of non-verbal body movements with insightful instructions to guide them on how to heal.

Benefits of Holotropic Breathwork

According to research by the Grof Foundation, Holotropic Breathwork has been shown to have numerous benefits, such as:

  • Increased mental clarity;
  • Clearer memories;
  • Greater self-awareness;
  • Better concentration and focus;
  • Increased creativity and inspiration;
  • Reduced cortisol levels; and
  • Reduced psychological stress levels.

Holotropic Breathwork is an effective way to reduce depression, anxiety, and many other emotional disorders. It has been used for decades to help people recover their bodies and minds. It has also been used as part of substance abuse treatment by giving participants the tools they need to help themselves deal with cravings and feelings of being out of control.

Two women in a holotropic breathwork session

Holotropic Breathwork Session Preparation

Holotropic Breathwork might sound daunting, but it’s actually very simple to do. It’s best to start off by reading up on some of the most common questions and experiences people have before trying it out for yourself.

This type of therapy is designed to give an individual insights into their psyche, which can be overwhelming if done without preparation. Whether you are going through Holotropic Breathwork for personal use or for professional uses, here are some steps that will help you prepare yourself for this journey:

1) Set aside some time before the session- make sure you don’t have any plans during the day prior to the session save for writing down questions beforehand.

2) Make sure that you are well rested and well fed- set up your environment as best as you can.

Holotropic Breathwork is a technique that can lead to profound spiritual experiences. It’s unique in that it allows the user to choose how they want to experience the session. This means that there are many different ways of approaching the technique, and this variety can be both beneficial and challenging for the person undergoing the session.

A Holotropic Breathwork session is one of the most intense, transformative experiences that can be undertaken. As such, it is important to prepare for it as much as possible in order to get the best out of it. 

A Holotropic breathwork workshop is an intense, journey into the world of the unconscious, during which the person enters a state of profound inner depth and experience. Holotropic Breathwork sessions may involve many different physical sensations such as sweating, shaking, rapid heart rate, rapid breathing, and increased blood flow. These sensations are seen to be healing in nature and can lead to profound experiences of insight and realization.

The person who does the session may have some or all of these physical reactions during their own session or they may observe these reactions in others. The healing effects are felt both at an individual level as well as on others present during the session.

Holotropic Breathwork sessions are done in a controlled environment, usually in a room where the temperature is cold, the lights are dimmed, and the music is playing softly.

During these sessions, people breathe deeply and relax as they become more present and aware of their body sensations. This allows them to experience an altered state of consciousness or heightened awareness that leads to healing.

A Holotropic Breathwork session can take place at home or in a clinic setting. It is mostly done on an individual basis and can last anywhere from 30 minutes to 4 hours which depends on the needs of the client. There are different types of sessions that vary in length and intensity, some of which require someone to be present during the session while it is happening.

Finding a Holotropic Breathwork Practitioner

If you do want to embark on a journey into holotropic breathing and breathwork, then it is important you find the right practitioner. Official holotropic breathwork and breathwork workshops can only be led by certified instructors who have been through the training from the Grof Foundation. This training takes 600 hours and allows the practitioner to take you through a holotropic breathwork experience. 

Remember, this practice is a combination of breathwork and psychotherapy, and can often be quite intense, so it’s important you find someone with the right qualifications before embarking on any sessions with them.

While we don’t do HB at The Anti-Burnout Club, we do have regular lessons and breathwork workshops for those who want to experience the benefits of conscious breathing. Want to know more? Check out the free Anti-Burnout Club app or take part in this free breathwork for sleep with our expert, Dr. Charlie Moult. 

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