Have you heard of the Five Finger Breathing Technique? It’s a fantastic mindfulness exercise for both kids and adults.

I love it! Perhaps the best reason why I love it is that almost everyone has at least one hand or 5 fingers. So you do not need a 5 Finger Breathing printable, even though I have included one at the end of this article. Almost everyone can just use their own hand.

I say ‘almost’ everyone because my website centers around disabled children, so there are probably a few who do not. And, I want to be inclusive.

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a child's hand for 5 finger breathing
Just hold up your hand and start breathing and being mindful.

Those who do not have hands can use the free printable for the 5 finger breathing exercise.

I have a printable PDF and explanation for the Star Breathing technique too. It is very similar to 5 finger breathing, it’s just a matter of preference as a mindfulness activity.

What is 5 Finger Breathing?

The “5 Finger Breathing” technique is a simple mindfulness exercise that can help reduce stress, anxiety, and promote relaxation. It involves using your fingers as a visual guide to regulate your breath.

Here’s how Five Finger Breathing works:

  1. Find a comfortable sitting position and relax your body.
  2. Extend one hand in front of you, palm facing up.
  3. With the index finger of your other hand, trace the outline of your extended hand, starting from the base of your thumb.
  4. As you trace up the side of your thumb, take a slow, deep breath in through your nose.
  5. When you reach the top of your thumb, pause briefly and hold your breath.
  6. Now, as you trace down the other side of your thumb, slowly exhale through your mouth.
  7. Repeat this process as you trace up and down each finger of your hand, taking a deep breath in as you trace up and exhaling as you trace down.
  8. After you finish tracing all your fingers, take a moment to notice how you feel and any changes in your state of mind or body.

The 5 Finger Breathing technique combines deep breathing and mindfulness, helping to shift your focus away from stressors and bring your attention to the present moment. It can be a useful tool for managing anxiety, promoting relaxation, and enhancing overall well-being.

5 finger breathing printable

Benefits of Five Finger Breathing

The 5 Finger Breathing technique can be beneficial for various purposes, including:

  1. Stress reduction: Engaging in deep breathing and focusing on the hand movements can help activate the body’s relaxation response, reducing stress and promoting a sense of calm.
  2. Anxiety management: By directing your attention to the present moment and the tactile sensations of tracing your fingers, 5 Finger Breathing can help alleviate anxiety and provide a grounding experience.
  3. Emotional regulation: This technique can assist in regulating emotions by encouraging mindful breathing, which can enhance self-awareness and create a sense of control over one’s emotional state.
  4. Mindfulness practice: 5 Finger Breathing serves as a mindfulness exercise, promoting mindfulness by bringing attention to the breath and the physical sensations associated with each finger’s movement.
  5. Relaxation and sleep improvement: By engaging in deep, slow breaths and focusing on the hand movements, this technique can help induce a state of relaxation, making it beneficial for unwinding before sleep and potentially improving the quality of sleep.
  6. Mind-body connection: The combination of deep breathing and finger tracing helps establish a connection between the mind and body, fostering a greater sense of awareness and embodiment.

It’s important to note that while the 5 Finger Breathing technique can be a helpful tool for relaxation and stress management, it may not be a substitute for professional help in addressing chronic or severe anxiety or stress-related conditions.

If you or your child is experiencing persistent or overwhelming stress or anxiety, it’s advisable to consult a healthcare professional for guidance and support.

Five Finger Breathing Printable

If you want to print the lavender and white image above, here it is. This 5 finger breathing worksheet is free for you to use. Of course you can always explain by using your own hand and demonstrating, but a worksheet is good too.


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