What Can Biofeedback Do For You?
Biofeedback is a technique that gives you control of your stress levels so you can activate a deeply relaxed state.
- Reduce stress levels
- Sleep quality
- Sports performance
- Energy levels
- Muscle tension
- School performance
- Work Performance
Up until the 1950’s, western society believed that it was not possible to control our autonomic nervous system. However, eastern Yogis have been able to do this for thousands of years. Through years of intense practice, they learn to consciously control their heart rate, body temperature, and oxygen consumption.
Biofeedback allows anyone to quickly learn to control their autonomic nervous system. It is a training strategy that uses technology to achieve many significant benefits.
In a typical biofeedback session, an instrument records a specific biological activity and you are able to follow this activity as it happens. You watch a moving graph or hear a tone to reflect the changes going on in the body system being measured. This feedback guides the body in making the desired changes.
With biofeedback you can learn to control your autonomic responses to improve your health and wellbeing.
Stress management is one important benefit of biofeedback. Special equipment “feeds back” your body’s automatic functions such as breathing, skin temperature, muscle tension, brain waves, and heart rate to you. With this information you can gain awareness and control, to improve your health and performance in every-day living. Biofeedback helps you recognize and improve your body’s reaction to stress, and is based on reversing the effects of the fight or flight response.
What is the fight or flight response?
The fight or flight response is a physiological reaction to real threats and danger which helps protects us. For example, if you were in the forest and crossed the path of an angry grizzly bear, your body would immediately trigger this response to prepare literally to “fight” or “flee” from the bear. You immediately feel a surge of adrenaline that makes your heart rate and breathing increase to give you more energy. Your pupils dilate to give tunnel vision for zeroing in on the threat. The blood from your hands and feet go to the major muscles groups for more strength. These, along with many other reactions, improve your chances for survival.
However, this powerful protective mechanism is rarely needed in our modern life. Yet it is chronically activated with our busy schedules, traffic jams, and excessive worry. We become habituated to high levels of stress and can’t remember what the relaxation response feels like. The relaxation response is the exact opposite state of the fight or flight response.
Biofeedback is a natural way to activate the relaxation response and help reduce the harmful effects of stress.
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