Test Lesson: Breath of Joy

The intention of this lesson is…

to get your energy flowing and invite vitality into your breath and body. This practice works to counter the shallow upper chest breathing of anxiety by allowing the breath to completely fill the lungs. The ‘Breath of Joy’ uses rhythmic body motion and coordinating arm movements with the breath to support you in managing your mood, energizing the body and awakening your entire system. 

How to prepare

Before you begin…

Gather your materials:

– Water bottle 

– Yoga mat or a blanket – if you would like to stand with this practice, and/or something to sit on – if you would like to be seated in this practice. Your seat should not have wheels on it. 

– Flat surface

Consider a place in your environment that you really enjoy or a space that makes you feel energized. Indoors or outdoors. 

You’ll need enough room to move, bend forward, and move your arms vertically and horizontally.

This practice can be modified and done seated.  

Manage your distractions, as you are able to:

Consider what tends to distract you and minimize those distractions during this time. Consider turning off reminders and notifications on your devices; inform people of the time you need for this practice, close your door. etc.

Breath of Joy

When you feel ready to begin… 

Get present: 

– Take a few deep breaths in and out. 

– Find a comfortable place to sit, lie down or do what feels most comfortable to you.

– Remind yourself that whatever unfolds during this time is honorable.

When you are ready, watch the video. Pause as you need to, and give yourself permission to move at your own pace.


Survivor’s Sanctuary offers movement practices, designed for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice, treatment, or diagnosis of a healthcare professional. If you experience dizziness, faintness, shortness of breath or physical discomfort while moving, please stop immediately, and consult with a healthcare professional.

me too. International is not a licensed medical provider.

You agree that you assume all responsibility when choosing to act on any of the movement practices contained on Survivor’s Sanctuary.

  • If you have untreated high blood pressure or any injuries of the head (such as migraines, glaucoma), this practice is not recommended for you at this time.
  • If you have low blood pressure, practice slowly and go less deeply into the bend.
  • If you have issues with your low back, you can still use this technique but minimize torso movement and go at a slower, gentler pace.
  • Notice your range of motion in your arms/shoulders, and stay within your comfort zone. While you might feel stretched with repetitions of the arm movements, this practice should not hurt your arms or shoulders.

Regrounding Moment

After you have completed a comfortable set of repetitions, pause while standing with your arms resting/hanging at your side. Stay long enough to return to your regular pace of breathing. Inhale deeply through your nose and exhale fully through your mouth. Close your eyes and notice the effects of your practice. Notice how quickly your heart beats; feel the sensations in your face, arms, and hands. Consider these reflections questions: where do you feel more aliveness or movement in your body? Where do you feel stillness? What is the quality of your thoughts? What is your mood? 

An Invitation to Integrate

If this activity felt good to you, we invite you to consider how you can be intentional about integrating this more into your life. You could try incorporating this practice into your mornings before you start with other activities. You might also consider doing this practice throughout the day when you are feeling sluggish or anxious. 

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