How this breathing app can improve your HRV and lower your stress levels

Stress less. Increase resilience. Be calm.

An app screenshot showing the daily resilience score and an increase in HRV trends
A info graphic showing that HRV is calculated by the time differences between each heart beat

What is HRV and why should you care?

Whether you want to become more resilient to stress, be calm in challenging situations, or be more in control of your emotions, an increased heart rate variability will help you.

While heart rate refers to the number of times your heart beats per minute, heart rate variability (HRV) describes the variation in time between each heartbeat.  
You might think that your heart beats at a constant rate like a metronome. In fact, the time between each heartbeat is constantly changing. The greater these variations in time, the higher your HRV and the healthier and more resilient you are. This might sound counterintuitive, but your heart’s variability reflects how adaptable your nervous system is and therefore how well your body can adapt to many kinds of changes.

Use breathing as a tool to strengthen your nervous system.

Your breath is one of the few places where your autonomic nervous system meets your somatic, also called the voluntary nervous system. Breathing is involuntary, but you can also control it. By controlling your breath you can learn to change the state of your autonomic nervous system.  
Because your HRV is influenced by the activity of the autonomic nervous system we can use it as a feedback tool in the learning process toward better self-regulation and increased resilience.

Yerkes-Dudson curve showing that optimal performance low and high physiological activation, between sleepiness and anxiety
A moving gif that shows how low HRV correlates with parasympathetic activation and high HRV with parasympathetic activation

Manage your fight-or-flight response.

The autonomic nervous system is subdivided into the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems, also known as the fight-or-flight mechanism and the relaxation response.

The sympathetic nervous system drives your physiological activation and is responsible for the increased energy level that you experience when you face a challenging situation.

The parasympathetic nervous system is responsible for regulating the activation of the sympathetic branch. It "puts on the brakes" once sympathetic activation has reached the desired level. When the parasympathetic nervous system is not strong enough to lower sympathetic activation appropriately, your ability to self-regulate suffers.

This is where heart rate variability comes in. HRV is an indicator of the parasympathetic nervous system's ability to lower sympathetic activation. Increasing your HRV with regular training strengthens the parasympathetic brake and your ability to self-regulate.

Here is how it works.

Find your individual Resonance Frequency.

First you will find the breathing frequency that leads to the greatest oscillations in your heart rate. Breathing at this frequency increases your HRV most effectively and strengthens your bodies ability to adapt to change more quickly and efficiently.

App Screenshot showing HRV data chart
App screenshot showing home overview screen


Once you've found your Resonance Frequency, you can practice at this breathing rate to increase your HRV, train your self regulation and become more resilient.

Monitor your progress and get actionable insights based on your HRV.

Monitor your progress and see how regular practice strengthens your nervous system. You will track key biomarkers like morning HRV, resting heart rate, and breathing rate to see how your ability to cope with stress increases.

An app screenshot showing the daily resilience score and an increase in HRV trends

Any questions?

Here are some questions that we often get asked.
If you don't find an answer:

Drop us your question here
Arrow pointing right
What's the difference to meditation?
Expand FAQ section

Similar to regular meditation practices HRV Biofeedback training strengthens your Mind-body connection. The main difference is that biofeedback training is a goal-directed practice which takes real-time data of your physiology into account. You will gain greater awareness and conscious control of physiological functions like correct breathing and heart rate.

Because HRV Biofeedback training is based on objective biomarkers, it helps people to cultivate a regular and goal-directed practice.

HRV Biofeedback trains your cardiovascular system to navigate through challenges with precision and trains your autonomic nervous system to cope better with your emotions.

What is HRV biofeedback training?
Expand FAQ section

HRV stands for Heart Rate Variability and is an indicator of your body’s ability to quickly adapt to external influences. HRV can also indicate the current stress load on your autonomic nervous system, reflecting if the sympathetic ("fight or flight") or parasympathetic ("pause and plan") part is more dominant.

During HRV Biofeedback training you learn to maximise heart rate increases and decreases with each breath cycle (inhalation and exhalation). To do this, you can determine your so-called resonance frequency breathing rate. Regular practice at this breathing rate increases HRV and trains your physiological and emotional flexibility and resilience.

Learn more about HRV Biofeedback
Arrow pointing right
I am not an elite athlete nor a high stake decision-maker. Why should I use resonance?
Expand FAQ section

Even though HRV Biofeedback is used by many elite athletes and top performers, its benefits can be of great value to all of us. Whether you need to be present on stage or you want to quickly unwind after a long workday, physiological self-regulation is a key skill that can help all of us live a more balanced and less stressful life.

Where can I download your app?
Expand FAQ section

Resonance is currently in beta. Request early access and get onboarded soon.

Get early access
Arrow pointing right
What kind of sensor do I need?
Expand FAQ section

You actually don't need a sensor at all. We use the camera and the flashlight of your smartphone to measure your HRV.