Breathing Buddy FAQs

Breathing in, I calm body and mind. Breathing out, I smile. Dwelling in the present moment, I know this is the only moment.

child use stress relief toy as comforting eye pillow

The breath is a superpower! Help your kids learn how to use it to feel calm and safe when they need it most.

The BE Buddy® is the only product that provides an all-in-one teaching tool offering intentional features to help kids tap into their internal resources to self-soothe, manage stress, and build healthy habits early in life.

Some of the all-in-one features include:

  • Feathers– for visual feedback while breathing
  • Weighted– to feel supported and grounded
  • Scented– to calm and practice present moment awareness
  • Multisensory– to notice sensations in the mind and body

The BE Buddy® is a multi-sensory and multipurpose mindful companion. Here are some of the ways you can use your BE Buddy® with your children to build social-emotional learning skills of self-awareness and self-regulation:

How to use the BE Buddy®:

  • Belly breathing buddy to teach healthy breathing mechanics (before bed to prepare for rest)
  • Balance prop to improve posture and feel confident 
  • Comforting eye pillow to relax and feel present and connected
  • Lengthen the exhale by blowing into the feathers to slow the heart and calm the body

Check out BE Buddy® Practice Guide or our BE Buddy® Videos if you want more ideas.

Use your BE Buddy® as a tangible tool to learn how to calm the body and settle the mind through low and slow diaphragmatic “belly” breathing, yoga, mindfulness, positive thinking, and relaxation! Implementing these practices into the daily routine will help your children build the neural pathways to manage stress and anxiety and create a healthy, happy relationship with themselves and the world around them.

Why practice mindful breathing?

Mindful breathing takes us out of our heads and into our bodies.  With practice, low and slow diaphragmatic breathing will teach kids how to use their breath to feel calm and safe anytime and anywhere. But just like any other skill, it takes practice. 

If you’ve ever tried to talk a child out of a tantrum, you’ll know that is no easy feat.  This is because the “alarm brain” is in charge, and the “thinking brain” is offline. Using the breath to signal to the brain that you are o.k. is the fastest way to shift from a stressed state to a relaxed state in real-time (and this is backed by science).

Neuroscientist Dr. Andrew Huberman says that 

“When we can’t control the mind, we must do something mechanical. We must breathe.”

We often refer to the breath as the remote control of the brain, and it can be used to change the channel using a body-first approach. We can use the breath to calm down our fight/flight response (the sympathetic nervous system) and activate our rest and digest response (the parasympathetic nervous system). You can learn more about this in our blog, Benefits of Belly Breathing.

Everyone can benefit from these practices because we all have stress in our lives, and our bodies are not born knowing how to deal with stress. Learning and practicing mindful breathing will produce healthy habits that will last a lifetime. Developing a healthy stress response will trickle into your life in a positive & healthy way. Whether young or old, integrating these practices into your daily life will reduce stress, improve focus, cultivate connection and improve overall well-being.

Anytime you need a buddy to help you breathe, focus, calm down, find comfort, relax, or have a companion nearby.  

We recommend starting with 5 minutes a day before bed to create a consistent routine (similar to brushing your teeth before bed). With practice, children will build neural pathways to feel calm and safe when they need it most. 

Keep it simple, fun, and consistent!

Diaphragmatic “belly” breathing will help:

  • regulate the nervous system: breathe low and slow to calm our thoughts and body
  • unexplained breathlessness and breathing discomfort
  • asthma and chronic lung complaints
  • digestive issues
  • snoring and sleep apnea
  • poor breathing patterns and habits
  • anxiety disorders
  • over breathing
  • sports performance

The digital age has brought us some fantastic conveniences, but with those, new challenges have appeared. Anxiety is the number one mental health problem facing children and adolescents today, but it is also the most treatable. Kids need more downtime but are often too over-scheduled to take that time on their own. Carving out time to implement mind/body practices will help prepare children with the tools to manage mental, emotional, and physical health in a fast-paced world.     

The first step is to educate yourself to build awareness of your breathing habits. Children often model after their parents or caregivers, so working to improve breathing habits together is your best chance of success. The goal is to build this simple practice into the daily routine (i.e., bedtime).

In other words, parents, teachers, and caregivers must “put their oxygen mask on first” before teaching it to children. 

Creating healthy habits begins at an early age, so the BE Buddy® is ideal for kids ages 3-10, but older kids, kids with special needs, and even adults can benefit from the breathing and mindfulness practices.

The BE Buddy® was thoughtfully designed in Minnesota (USA) by Stephanie Esser, a mother of four, a school teacher, and a certified breathing coach. Each BE Buddy® is handmade in Minnesota with care and love by expert sewists. If you want to learn more, check out this BE Buddy® Story blog post.

The BE Buddy® is made of canvas and velvet and filled with flax seed and dried lavender. Each buddy has braided cord loops for hanging and feathery hair to make the breath visible. 

The BE Buddy® is made of various soft and textured fabrics and is filled with flaxseed and dried lavender. Each of these materials has different properties, and the flaxseed will absorb liquid, so it is recommended to SPOT CLEAN ONLY with cold water and mild detergent, then air dry (DO NOT HEAT) to ensure longevity.

Why Learn How to Breathe Well?

  • It is the link between the mind and body that can be the catalyst to your emotional state
  • Poor breathing habits magnify over a lifetime, affecting health and happiness. Many people are unaware that they have been stuck in bad breathing habits for weeks, months, or even years.
  • It can be taught to anyone
  • It is accessible
  • It is free
  • It can be done anywhere at anytime
  • It strengthens the immune system
  • It stimulates movement & circulation
BE Buddy Felix the Fox Breathing Toy