The LGB exercise uses the healing powers of our breath to physically and emotionally release trauma, stress and anxiety. The LGB is viewed as a discovery because I believe other animals instinctively know how to process trauma and stress but our cognitive abilities have clouded what we no doubt knew earlier in our evolution.
The LGB concept represents a therapy that does not require the user to translate feeling into language for processing. The intention of the LGB exercise is to bump up against and into fight/flight/freeze mode to have physical/emotional releases/healing. The LGB exercise has a 3 second breath cycle (inhale/exhale) and is supported by a free 22 minute MP3 pascing audio available through the How To page of this web site. The LGB can be done individually and/or with practioners as an enhancement to other modalities.
The concept of LGB is that
- quick sighing,
- in fight/flight/freeze mode,
- will trigger a release of,
- suppressed/unprocessed emotion from past events in life.
The LGB exercise has users sighing at 20X/minute. With large diaphragmatic inhale volumes brings challenges to managing BOTH effective inhale volumes and the Vulnerable Warrior Sigh. The Vulnerable Warrior Sigh is saying to yourself, I am safe, I am strong/warrior, and as a vulnerable warrior I can let go of whatever comes up.
In Fight/Flight/Freeze Mode
Fight/Flight/Freeze mode is different for everyone, changes during exercise/over time and is within the range of hypocapnia/overbreathing. LGB users control the inhale volume to achieve and maintain the therapeutic zone.
Will Trigger A Release Of
Releases can be immediate/spontaneous or the result of a perceptible build-up to a release. In both cases there can be a cascade of releases that suspend the exercise for full release. Releases evolve over time.
Suppressed/Unprocessed Emotion From Past Events In Life
What is released during the LGB exercise is physical and emotional energy without necessarily cognitive recognition of the source of the emotion. Since this is a non-language based exercise the results are mostly non-cognitive as well.
LGB SHORT HISTORY
The LGB exercise described in this web site is the development of a discovery that I, James Bombardier, made in 2012 during my healing from the trauma, stress and anxiety I acquired being sideswiped by a SUV while riding my bicycle in 2006. I took off the side mirror of a Chevy Avalanche with the back of my head at highway speed as well as sustaining other injuries. I was initially diagnosed with PTSD and added the anxiety disorder diagnosis when I had a mental breakdown 7 months after the crash because I was high functioning and had not yet received any mental health therapy for the TBI I had. Two years after the crash a witness deposition reported that I had been unconscious for 8-10 minutes. When this information was provide to the health care system I was diagnosed with a TBI.
After lots of mental health therapy including 12 sessions of EMDR and group CBT therapy I still felt damaged and was exploring mindful meditations when I repurposed (another breath exercise) into what is now the Letting Go Breath exercise. I was paying for physical therapy not provided by my health care provider at this time. The private provider, Heather Goodell (now Purdin) M. S., P.T. worked with me to understand what I was developing, how it was helping her heal me better and agreed to co-copyright the original concept in 2013.
The LGB exercise scales to work for anyone, without potential health limitations, to let go of physical and emotional hurt and stress that accumulates in their bodies. It can be done privately, with a trusted friend or it can be used as an effective complementary practice when integrated with other treatment modalities by those in the healing professions, including the treatment of TBI, PTSD and anxiety disorder recovery.
It takes intention to heal in this manner. So doing the LGB exercise can be rigorous. That said, the results are worth the effort. The user is able to remove the physical and emotional hurt associated with unprocessed trauma, stress, anxiety and fear stored in their bodies. The LGB exercise does not require that you try to put language to your hurt for yourself or a healer but instead just breathe it away.
Below is an April 2015 James Bombardier only upgrade to the original co-copyrighted concept document:
WHAT IS THE LGB EXERCISE?
LGB is a breathing exercise to release stress, emotion & trauma underlying the fear stored in our bodies. It can be supplemented by myofascial release therapy (MFR) and/or a trained cranio sacral therapist. for the physical or mental "fasciation".
LGB is a mild to moderate hypocapnic breath exercise.
Hypocapnic breathing is overbreathing/hyperventilation to a small or significant degree. Holotropic breathwork and Re-birthing breathwork are therapies that focus on the extreme of overbreathing/hyperventilation. The LGB exercise encourages users to induce just enough hypocapnia to precipitate therapeutic letting go triggered by intentional exhalations of the breath.
With the LGB, users do an inhale and exhale every 3 seconds or 20 times per minute. The first 1 1/2 seconds are used for a "full least stress" in-breath. Start with small volumes of in breath initially and build up volume as comfortable to do so.
The 1 1/2 second out-breath triggers the body, when in a non-trauma state and environment to release accumulated stress, emotion, anxiety and both physical and mental trauma. Think of it as an enhanced sigh.
HOW DOES THE LGB WORK?
It is believed that some of trauma associated with injury is stored in fascia within the body in the area of the physical trauma. LGB is premised on the belief that every exhale can include a release of emotion, immediate, recent or stored. While the inhale portion of the breath is a conscious effort, the initial exhale portion should be like an enhanced sigh, it is the letting go part.
It is believed that during inhalation the body's position, orientation to diaphragmatic/belly/upper chest inhalation are active components in the effectiveness of the letting go during the exhale portion of the breath. If LGB is being used for serious trauma, adjust the components with the help of a health professional, such as a MFR trained osteopathic physical therapist, a trained cranial sacral therapist, or a trusted healer or friend who understands the LGB concepts to assist or "hold space" while you do the exercise to insure you aren't doing the exercise in trauma or at risk of any other health problem.
LGB is premised on the belief that there is an emotional therapeutic value to overbreathing in a non-trauma state. The physical and mental state of the individual and the rate of overbreathing they do during the LGB exercise, along with their letting go during the exhale, effects how hypocapnic they get. When starting the LGB exercise it may take some time to get to a hypocapnic state where the exhale portion, done effectively, either starts a welling up of emotion/release pattern or sudden expressions of emotion. Users are encouraged to start with low breath volume and work up to more volume with experience and comfort.
James Bombardier believes that proper use of the LGB exercise returns a person to a condition similar to "fight/flight" or bumping up againt the initiation of fight/flight condition but in a safe, intentional and supported environment. James believes that the exaggerated sigh as the exhale portion of the LGB breath is a trigger to our bodies to release any stored trauma.
THE CORE OF THE LGB EXERCISE EXPERIENCE
The letting go of the stress/trauma is the most important result of the LGB exercise. Each expression of emotion needs to be felt and not be held back as much as is necessary for full release before returning to the 3 second LGB breath pattern.
The length of time that a LGB user does the exercise can vary; (estimate from 30+ months of James's experience) from 5-10 minutes to an hour.
It is recommended that LGB users initially work with a MFR trained osteopathic physical therapist or a trained cranio sacral therapist. If these therapists familiarize themselves with the LGB concept they can help evaluate your LGB exercise experience and help you be more comfortable with the emotional and physical letting go process.
LGB is a breath exercise that makes you feel better when you are done with it and glad you did it even though it is sometimes hard to initiate.
LGB is an exercise that can be physically and emotionally draining and participants must insure they are out of the hypocapnic state before moving around much and should rest sufficiently between exercises, at least a day.
LGB is an exercise that some folks need to check with their doctors before trying.
Potential health limitations of doing the LGB
1. You don’t want to do the LGB exercise if you cannot breathe through your nose on the inhale and/or control yourself not going into trauma by doing the exercise too vigorously.
2. You don’t want to do the LGB exercise if the emotions released by it could lead to some physical or emotion crisis like a heart attack, mental breakdown, etc. If there is any chance of complications LGB users are instructed to do the exercise under the guidance of a health care provider.
The Letting Go Breath© (LGB) exercise was discovered/innovated by inventor James Bombardier with help from Heather Goodell (now Purdin) M. S., P.T. in mid 2012. They copyrighted the concept in 2013 and presented it to the Portland, OR VFP #72 (see video).
James Bombardier has had produced a 22 minute audio LGB exercise support recording for the LGB exercise that is available for free download through the How To Do the LGB Exercise page of this web site.
WHAT LGB ISN'T:
LGB is not a breath exercise to conquer by saying that if you make it through it without having a release you must not have any stored stress/trauma. This exercise takes learning how to let go in breathing situations where we normally tighten up.
LGB is not the yoga breath of fire.
LGB is not extreme hyperventilation healing strategies like Holotropic and rebirthing, but does encourage a user into overbreathing enough to be in a hypocapnic state during the exercise.
LGB is not Jeff Primak's Breath Empowerment© concept that focuses primarily on the in breath; (That said, James was using his original exercise in early 2012 when he figured out what he needed for his healing strategy).