Take Four Calm Breaths

This post is part of our special series on the Coronavirus outbreak and contains a free activity download from our partners at the Michael Phelps Foundation.

At Boys & Girls Clubs, we have a LOT of famous friends. I mean, we have DENZEL in our speed dial.

Another one of our friends is the most successful and decorated Olympian of all-time, Michael Phelps! Not only is he one of the world’s most incredible athletes, but through the Michael Phelps Foundation, he’s been an AMAZING partner to Boys & Girls Clubs all across the country. Through the IM Program, the Foundation has offered water-safety courses, recreational pool activities, and swim training, as well as health and wellness education to Clubs and the Special Olympics.

michael phelps
From a 2015 visit to Boys & Girls Clubs of the Tennessee Valley

I’m super excited to share a lesson from the IM Healthy Program that the Michael Phelps Foundation knew we would all find helpful. In Take Four Calm Breaths, youth will learn a stress management technique that we’ve shared for staff before, deep breathing. Here’s a message from the team:

For many of you who are at home, worried about your Boys and Girls Club kids while tending to the school needs of your own children, taking four calm breaths is already helping you make it through the day. It has been several weeks of our new way of living and as the country begins to talk about opening again, there is a lot of stress. I hope you recognize the situation and can breathe through it as you help others breathe through it too.

In our lesson this week we give you information on

    1. The description of a calm breath
    2. How important it is to breathe calmly and slowly
    3. How to make calm breathing a habit
    4. How to count yourself through a series of calming breaths

Take care of yourselves. All of us at Michael Phelps Foundation look forward to getting back together to help the lives of our boys and girls at the Clubs!

Also, one fun fact:  in our 4 calm breaths today we breathe in our nose and out of our mouth but REMEMBER swimming is the opposite- breath in your mouth and breath out of your nose! BUT either way we want the breath to  be calm and slow. 🙂

– The MPF Team

To download this lesson generously provided by the Michael Phelps Foundation, click the image below. It could be easily run either in person or virtually, in a live session or in a recorded video sent to members. And if you are reading this ~*from the future*~ it is totally applicable in non-pandemic times too. Im Healthy screengrab

A HUGE ClubX THANK YOU to the Michael Phelps Foundation!

Check back in with the ClubX Blog often for more ideas and resources on how to maintain your mental and emotional well-being during this challenging time.  Stay safe.  Wash your hands.  Take care of yourself.  We are in this together! 

Get the latest updates from BGCA at BGCA.net/Coronavirus, find programming ideas at MyFuture.net, like the BGCA Youth Development on Facebook for YD updates including video from Sarah, and join the brand new BGCA Youth Development Community also on Facebook to connect with other Club staff on programming through coronavirus.


_four calm pin

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