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Integrative Breathing Therapy- (IBT)


Breathing for Health

We all know that breathing  is really really important. No breath no life..simple!.    What many people don't realise is that  breathing can also be used as a therapeutic tool,  to regulate physical and psychological processes that contribute to health. 

People who struggle with breathing because of asthma, nasal allergies, emphysema, sleep apnea or anxiety really understand from their own experience that to not breathe well is to not feel well.  Many people with these conditions have dysfunctional breathing. A condition that can be corrected with breathing retraining.

Some of you may have felt the extra-ordinary shifts in well being that come from working with the breath  and have experienced for yourselves the calming and energizing  potential of consciously working with your breath. 

Here are some reasons that breathing has these healing effects. -

  1. Breathing can influence the function of the autonomic nervous system and the vagus nerve.
  2. Breathing exercises can influence the stress response and stress resiliance.
  3. Breathing affects the immune system and the inflammatory response
  4. Breathing affects the efficiency of circulaton of blood and lymph
  5. Breathing helps normalise homeostatic reflexes such as the baroreflex (that regulates blood pressure).
  6. Breathing can be used to train the mind, focus and attention
  7. Breathing affects the function of the digestive system
  8. Breathing exercises can improve airway and lung function

Conditions that can be helped by breathing therapy

  • Asthma
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
  • Sleep Disordered Breathing ( Sleep Apnea)
  • Mouth Breathing
  • Hypertension
  • Sinus Congestion
  • Anxiety and Panic Disorder
  • Gastro-intestinal reflux disorder
  • Chronic Pain
  • Recurring neck, back, shoulder and pelvic pain

 What is Integrative Breathing Therapy (IBT)

Integrative Breathing Therapy is a comprehensive and evidence based approach to breathing therapy that also assesses and treats dysfunctional breathing.   It’s a holistic approach that considers causes and contributing factors to breathing dysfunction and addresses the specific needs of the individual.

Integrative breathing therapy addresses biochemical, biomechanical and mental/emotional aspects of dysfunctional breathing.

IBT begins with a thorough breathing  assessment for presence of acute or chronic hyperventilation, breathing pattern disorders, poor breathing habits and stress related breathing issues.

After breathing assessment patients are taught a range of breathing techniques that are modified so that treatment can be individualized and all key aspects of breathing functionality corrected.  

 Breathing techniques used in Integrative Breathing Therapy include

  • Functional Breathing Retraining
  • Mindful Breath and Movement
  • Resonance Frequency Breathing
  • Buteyko Breathing Technique 

Integrative Breathing Therapy is available in individual sessions and after initial assessment you can also complete the IBT program in a small group class.


How to Get Help For Your Breathing

Book into the Breath and Body Clinic for a Breathing Assessment

Our comprehensive dysfunctional breathing assessments can check your lung function, assess breathing symptoms, identify if your breathing pattern is efficient, check CO2 levels to see if you are hyperventilating.

After assessment you can arrange to see Dr. Courtney for individual sessions or book into one of the Integrative Breathing Therapy workshops or classes.

There are workshops for adults and for children.

Adults workshops-

Integrative Breathing Therapy for Adults

Breath Mind Body for Healing and Stress Reduction

Childrens Workshop

Healthy Breathing Healthy Child

Introductory Information Sessions 

These are also available at various times. Most sessions run for 1-1/1/2 hours.  

  • ·       How to really help your childs breathing problem
  • ·       Functional breathing basics for adults
  • ·       Lips, tongue and breathing basics for children
  • ·       Throat and tongue exercises for snoring and sleep apnoea
  • ·       Effective natural medicines for asthma and chronic lung complaints
  • ·       Mind-body healing and stress reduction techniques for daily life
  • ·       Back, Neck and Pelvic Pain- Breathing Movement Posture Basics


for further information and bookings contact

02-99183460 or breathandbody@optusnet.com.au


Here is some more infomation about some of the breathing techniques used in Integrative Breathing Therapy

Buteyko Breathing Technique

The Buteyko Breathing Technique (BBT) is most well known for the treatment of asthma, sleep apnea and mouth breathing due to chronic airway obstruction. At least 6 published randomised controlled clinical trials have shown BBT to be helpful for asthma. Further information can be found here -

Dr Courtney's article in Biofeedback Magazine -  Wellbeing in 1997,  

Dr Courtney's article "Breathe Easy" in Massage Magazine 2000

The Buteyko Supporters site - http://members.westnet.com.au/pkolb/buteyko.htm


Resonance Frequency Breathing 
This breathing technique promotes healing because it creates an ideal interaction between the respiratory, cardiovascular and autonomic nervous system. 


Mindful Breath and Movement
Mindful breath and movment techniques used in IBT help people learn to direct and focus their attention on the body and the breath mindfully. This helps the person to relax and be present so that breathing and the persons perception of their breathing begins to normalise.
 Mindfulness has gained respect as a non-religious intervention to improve the function of the brain, reduce stress and to treat various conditions including chronic pain, depression and a range of diseases.
The practice of mindful attention to the breath is the bedrock of most meditation techniques. The rich tradition of using the breathe as a means of anchoring the attention in the present moment owes much to the Buddhist writing such as the Anapanasati Sutta
Read more on Mindfulness Research Guide, a compilation of research on mindfulness -


 Functional Breathing Retraining

Functional breathing retraining focuses on the biomechanical aspects of breathing. it help to correct  dysfunctions of breathing patterns such as poor co-ordination, inefficiency and instability of breathing.
If you would like to read more on breathing therapy- Here is short excerpt from Dr. Courtney’s PhD thesis