Calming Hand Breathing Technique: Manage Your Anxiety and Breathlessness

Last Update on March 19, 2021 : Published on March 19, 2021
The Calming Hand Technique

The aim of hand breathing technique is the introduction of a way to manage breathlessness and control the feelings of panic. Whenever you feel stressed, short of breath, worried, or anxious you can try this five-finger breathing technique.

The calming hand technique is a helpful tool for managing breathlessness. This technique is super-handy, easy, and can be performed anywhere and anytime. All steps are so easy that you don’t have to read them every time.

Talking about breathlessness is an awareness of uncomfortable or difficult breathing. Breathlessness is an upsetting and unpleasant sensation. Gladly, breathlessness in difficult situations can be controlled with the help of calming hand technique without the need for any type of medication.

Additionally, it also controls panic situations that might include:

  • Light-headedness
  • Palpitations
  • Tingling sensations in hands
  • Dry mouth
  • Sweating
  • Feeling frightened or out of control
  • Difficult or fast breathing

Related Read: Panic Attack vs. Anxiety Attack 

Method of Breathing Recovery

Below are steps that you can do to control your breathlessness:

  1. Whatever you’re doing, stop.
  2. Take the formation of breathing recovery as shown in the below picture.
  3. Try turning on a hand detained by the fan, while aiming at your mouth and nose.
  4. Try to blow out in the fan, do not try to force the flow of air
  5. Don’t worry about the breathing, it will shortly settle.
  6. Narrow your mouth slightly while you breathe out, it will help you for managing the breathing pattern.
  7. Whenever you’re ready for a long blow…take a deep breath and blow a long breath.
  8. Whenever your breathing eases up, straighten up your body.
  9. Now bring your upper chest and shoulders in a resting position.
  10. You can now slightly bring back your breathing to your tummy.
  11. Now, don’t move, stay still for a minute and try to relax everything.

Five Finger Breathing Technique(The Calming Hand Technique)

calming hand

The Five Finger breathing is a strategy used for managing your panic and feelings out of control. It also works for breathlessness. Whenever you feel like your breathing is not in control, try this technique and control your breathing in less than a minute.

Related Read: Dating someone with Anxiety

You can also print this picture for remembering the steps. You can also take a screenshot of the picture.

Five Steps for Understanding Five Finger Breathing Technique

Step 1- Thumb “Recognition

First of all, you have to recognize the symptoms when you begin to panic. Next, firmly hold your thumb and remind yourself of regaining control. Remember, what you would do to control your feelings. This step will help you to calm your amplified breathing.

Step 2- Index finger “Breathe out”

While you begin to relax, breathe out! This will help in relaxing your arms, upper chest, and shoulders (flop and drop will help you in easing up instantly). If you’re in your relaxing state, try breathing out for a long time and then breathe in slightly.

Step 3- Middle finger “Breathe in slowly”

In the third step, try taking a slow and gentle breath and try to focus on the air filling up in your lungs.

Step 4- Fourth finger “Breathe out slowly”

In the fourth step of 5 finger technique, again take a gentle and slow relaxed breath out. Do it until your breath begins to come up in its natural form. A relaxed breathing pattern will help you in relieving the sensation of panic and breathlessness.

Step 5- Little finger “Stretch and relax your hand “

Now, relax and stretch your hand, remind yourself of regaining control. Stretching the hand will help you in relieving you from the episode of panic. The benefit of these steps is that you can do it easily and no one around will ever get to know about it.

PS: If you’re not able to regain your control, we suggest you kindly do it 4-5 times until you start feeling better.

Related Read: 10 Effective Tips to Deal with Anxiety 

Positions for Breathing Recovery: With

    You can take the reference of these pictures for breathing recovery positions whenever you feel breathlessness after activity.

    1. Sit on The Chair in a Resting Position


    2. Stand up with the Support of a Table.

    recovery breathing position

    3. Try to Stand Up With the Support of a Chair and Table as Shown in the image.

    recovery position

    Positions for Resting

    Below are some reference pictures for resting positions that will help you to relieve panic.

    A. Sitting forward supported by a Table 

    Step 1: Sit in a chair facing the table and keep your feet flat on the floor. 

    Step 2: Try to lean your chest forward and now keep your arms in a resting position on the table. 

    Step 3: Now, rest your hands with the support of pillows or forearms.


    While doing this, make sure you’re fully over by your side.

    Additionally, resting your arm over the pile of pillows will also help. All you have to do is to relax on pillows as much you can. You can keep your legs apart for better help.

    B. Sleeping in a relaxed position

    Step 1: Try to come in a resting and comfortable position. Make sure your legs and hands are straight and head is elevated with the help of pillows while keeping your back straight. 

    Step 2: Now lie back while elevating your hand and keep your knees in a bent position. Also, you can keep an extra pillow under your knees.

    Resting positions

If you’re still unable to get yourself in normal mode, consider talking to a mental health professional for panic attacks and anxiety, to connect with an online mental health provider from BetterHelp.

Start Your Counseling Now

I hope this blog helps you to understand the five-finger breathing exercise or calming hand technique. Comment down and let us know your views about this finger technique. For more such content, follow Calm Sage on all social media platforms.

Thanks for reading.

More power to you!

About The Author

Aayushi Kapoor
Aayushi Kapoor

Aayushi is a Content Creator at Calm Sage. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Food Technology and a Master's Degree in Clinical Nutrition. Her constant interest in the improvement of mental health, nutrition, and overall wellness embarked upon her career as a “full-time educational writer.” She likes to make an asynchronous connection with her readers. Her mantra for living life is "What you seek is seeking you".

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