Cardiac Coherence encounter a growing interest among people and professional.
Previously applied in cardiovascular prevention, it usage spreads in the emotional response management programs, stress and sport.
When facing stressful demands of everyday life, cardiac coherence strengthens the adaptability of physiological self-regulation system to fight against psychological and physical problems, allowing the body to maintain a better inner balance.
AUTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM (ANS) ROLE
Originating from lymbic system, the seat of emotions, Autonomic Nervous System take care of:
- Controling principal organs: eyes, heart, lungs, stomach ...
- Homeostasis: regulating and maintaining balance and physiological stability.
The SNA is composed of 2 opposite parts acting balancing the effect of each other:
- The Sympathetic Nervous System is associated with action : it prepares the body to act and react.
- The Parasympathetic Nervous System is associated with rest : it slows body functions ot preserve energy.
Un SNA flexible permet à l’organisme de maintenir l’homéostasie, face aux sollicitations stressantes externes (environnement) et internes (émotions, douleur…). A l’inverse, le manque de flexibilité expose à différentes manifestations somatiques et psychologiques.
A flexible SNA allows the body to maintain homeostasis, in order to deal with external (environment) and internal (emotions, pain …) stressful demands. On the contrary, the lack of its flexibility expose to various somatic and psychological symptoms.
Recent clinical studies stress the fact that a rigid SNA, can be mainly explained by a lower parasympathetic nervous system tone, also called vagal tone.
CONSEQUENCE OF A LOW VAGAL TONE
Studies show a significant decrease in vagal tone in people with:
- Diabetes, hypertension, asthma or with inflammatory or chronic painful diseases;
- chronic or generalized anxiety, generalized anxiety, panic attacks or post traumatic stress disorder
Different triggering mechanisms, now better known, are involved: the reflex phenomena of regulation between heart rate, respiration and blood pressure and the neurobiological mechanisms of the brain associated with stress and emotions.
INCREASING VAGAL TONE
There is a simple and easy way for us all to increase our vagal: breathing.
Regular training in breathing control makes it possible to optimize this system - also known as baroreflex – by synchonizing the heart, breathing and blood pressure rate.
An increasing or decreasing blood pressure, blood vessels wih trigger, through the SNA, the heart rate acceleration or deceleration.
This physiological phenomenon can be optimized with a 6 cycles per minute (cpm) breathing: whith a 4.5 seconds inhalation and a 5.5 seconds exhalation.
This slow, steady and guided breathing enables synchronizing breathing variations with baroreflex activity, enhancing vagal tone and maximizing the adaptability of the ANS.
This synchronicity is called Cardiac Coherence.
Cardiac coherence training increases vagal tone and enhances the flexibility of the SNA, allowing the body to better maintain homeostasis and fight against psychological, physical and psychosomatic problems.
Recent studies shows us the interest for:
- Enhancing emotional response toward stress
- Reducing Myocardial risk
- Improving Lung capacity
- Reducing Respiratory disorders
- Relieving Fibromyalgia
- Reducing perceived physical pain
- Improving depression and anxiety treatment
- Reducing high blood pressure
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