Want more tips and tricks for reaching your health goals? Join Lark!

Take our 2-minute survey to find out if you’re eligible to join Lark which includes a smart scale and the chance to earn a Fitbit®.
Start now
*Terms and conditions apply
Close icon

Does your insurance cover daily coaching and a smart scale from Lark?

Find out now with our 2-minute eligibility quiz!
Check my eligibility
Close icon
< Back to Resource Center
< Back to Member Blog

Breathing Exercises for Hypertension

December 27, 2020
Breathing Exercises for Hypertension - Lark Health

Are you at risk of prediabetes?

Lark can help lower your risk for Type 2 Diabetes through healthy habit formation, and data tracking.
Height: 5 ft 4 in
4' 0"
7' 0"
Weight: 160 lbs
90 lbs
500 lbs
Risk Level
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

What could 15% weight loss mean for you?

Feel more energetic and significantly reduce your risk of chronic conditions like diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

By clicking the button above, you agree to the Lark Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy, and SMS Terms.

Current Weight: 250 lbs
120 lbs
500 lbs
Your weight loss could be*
- - lbs
Your new weight: -- lbs
Am I eligible?

By clicking the button above, you agree to the Lark Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy, and SMS Terms.

*Results may vary. Based on the average weight loss in three, 68-week clinical trials of patients without diabetes who reached and maintained a dose of 2.4mg/week of GLP-1 treatment, along with a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity. View study here.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Hypertension is the second-leading underlying cause of death (smoking is first), but lifestyle changes can be amazingly effective at lowering high blood pressure. In the Lark hypertension study, the average blood pressure among patients with hypertension decreased in six months while using Lark and a home blood pressure monitor. Breathing exercises for hypertension can be part of your plan to manage hypertension, and here is an overview.

What Is Hypertension?

Hypertension is high blood pressure, or a higher-than-normal force of blood against walls of blood vessel walls. A reading of at least 130/80 mm Hg is considered hypertension. People are more likely to develop hypertension if they have a family history of hypertension, are older, or are African-American or Hispanic American.

Some ways to lower risk for hypertension are losing weight if you are overweight or obese, becoming physically active, improving nutrition quality of what you eat, getting adequate sleep, and getting conditions such as diabetes and high cholesterol under control. Managing stress better can also lower blood pressure. 

Along with taking medications as prescribed, these same changes can also help lower blood pressure if you already have it. Lark for Hypertension coaches patients on these lifestyle changes. 

How Can Breathing Exercises Affect Blood Pressure?

Slow breathing exercises are a stress management technique that can help lower blood pressure. In one study, participants who used a smartphone app that coached on deep breathing for 3 months had an average decrease in systolic blood pressure of -8 mm Hg.

Even a single session of slow breathing and mental relaxation can reduce blood pressure, along with heart rate and breathing rate. 

When to Try Breathing Exercises

Breathing exercises can lower blood pressure quickly, and continuing breathing exercises for weeks or months can help keep blood pressure lower during that period. It may be good to practice breathing exercises on a regular basis, such as in the morning or evening, as well as in certain situations when you may need help getting blood pressure down. These can include the following.

  • Before taking a blood pressure measurement at home or in the doctor's office so your reading is accurate and not artificially high.
  • Before what may be a stressful situation, such as before giving a presentation at work or walking into a dental appointment.
  • Before reacting in a possibly negative way, such as getting angry with your spouse or children or engaging in road rage when another car cuts you off.
  • When you feel stressed.

Sample Breathing Exercises

There are many types of breathing techniques. It can work to try them all and see which you like. It is important not to get stressed over the exact breathing techniques themselves because that can have the opposite effect - it can raise your blood pressure! Instead, focus on your breathing and acceptance of yourself.

Deep breathing is simple, but it can be effective. It involves taking long, deep breaths while lying or sitting in a comfortable and focusing on your stomach rising and falling.

Breath Focus has you imagining peacefulness as you breathe in, and imagining you are releasing tension as you breathe out. You can also say a simple phrase with each inhale and exhale. It could be something like, "I breathe in calm," as you breathe in, and, "I breathe out stress," as you exhale.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation has you working up your body, as you breathe in and out slowly, until you are completely relaxed. Each time you inhale, tense a muscle group. When you exhale, relax those muscles. Start with your toes, then progress to your feet, ankles, calves, thighs, rear-end (glutes), stomach, chest, shoulders, arms, fingers, and neck.

Controlled Equal Breathing has you counting as you breathe and controlling your breathing so you breathe in for the same amount of time you breathe out. You might start by breathing in as you count slowly to four, then breathing out as you count to four, then repeating a few times. As you practice, you can increase the length of time you count for each breath.

Help with Breathing Exercises and Hypertension

Do you need help managing stress and mastering breathing exercises? Lark for Hypertension can help you practice breathing techniques so they can become habits and you can rely on them whenever you need them. You can also learn and practice more techniques for managing stress to lower blood pressure.

Lark's coaching includes plenty of other areas to help you get blood pressure down. From eating right, losing weight, and getting more physically active, to taking medications as prescribed, Lark encourages you to make small changes in your daily routines so blood pressure control becomes easier. Your Lark coach is available all the time to give feedback, let you log your data and track your progress, and offer tips.

These small changes can add up to big results. Participants in the Lark hypertension study had access to Lark for 6 months. In that time, the average decrease in systolic blood pressure was over 8 mm Hg - not shabby! Deep breathing and other breathing exercises for hypertension could fit into your own plan to control blood pressure.

About Lark

Lark helps you eat better, move more, stress less, and improve your overall wellness. Lark’s digital coach is available 24/7 on your smartphone to give you personalized tips, recommendations, and motivation to lose weight and prevent chronic conditions like diabetes.

Read more

Get healthier with Lark & earn a Fitbit®

Lose weight, get more active, and eat better.
take 1-minute survey

See if Ozempic® is covered by insurance

Curb cravings and reach your weight loss goals!

Similar posts

Green beans with feta cheese and pine nutsGreen beans with feta cheese and pine nuts

Healthy Late-Night Snacks for Weight Loss

People say eating at night can lead to weight gain, but what if you’re hungry? Here are some tips to keep evening snacks healthy so you can go to bed without being hungry.

Learn more
Getting the Most from Your Lark for High Blood Pressure - Lark HealthGetting the Most from Your Lark for High Blood Pressure - Lark Health

Getting the Most from Your Lark for High Blood Pressure

How can you get the most from Lark for Hypertension? Follow our guide and control your high blood pressure to live a healthier lifestyle.

Learn more