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Worm Breathing

Updated: May 31, 2023

What is Worm Breathing?

Worm breathing is a breathing exercise that can boost motivation and help students relax before tasks and when they need self-confidence. With additions to rainbow breathing, the worm breathing technique includes breath-holding moments to help learners focus their attention on their breathing and relax.

How to use worm wreathing in EFL settings

This activity is taken from Assoc. Prof. Dr. İpek Kuru Gönen's work published in 2022. Here is a sample image for teachers:


  1. Find "start here". Put your index finger on it.

  2. Follow the arrows with your breathing, using your finger or eyes.

  3. Breathe in, hold your breath, and breathe out.

  4. Think about a forest. You explore the forest with the worm. Rise, stop, then fall again.

  5. Repeat this three times.

  6. How do you feel? Are you ready for the lesson?

Assoc. Prof. Dr. İpek Kuru Gönen argues that the space created by holding their breath for a little while between inhale and exhale will also allow students to simply observe their breaths without doing anything. Finding serenity and resilience in the present time and preparing for learning without hurrying with a full mind can be accomplished by doing this.

You can also play this video for sound effects:


Kuru Gönen, S. İpek. (2022). Mindfulness-based practices for EFL teachers: sample tasks and insights to cultivate mindfulness. Focus on ELT Journal, 4(3), 78–93.


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