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Diaphragmatic Breathing (DB) for Mood Disorders - October

Event Details
Date: 20 & 27 October 2022
Time: 12.00-3.00pm & 12.00-2.00pm AEDT
Venue: Online
CPD hrs: 6 hours
CPD Category: 2 - Skills and Knowledge

Refer to listing

Organiser: AASW


(03) 9320 1000

  • Event date has passed
  • Registrations are closed

Diaphragmatic Breathing (DB) is evidence-based, non-pharmacological, non-invasive, cost-effective and simple. Social workers are ideally placed to integrate DB for anxiety, depression and mood disorders experienced by their clients.

Diaphragmatic Breathing can help you to:

  • Lower the harmful effects of the stress hormone cortisol on your body.
  • Lower your heart rate.
  • Lower your blood pressure.
  • Cope with the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
  • Slow your rate of breathing so that it expends less energy (Healthline, 2022).
  • Decrease anxiety and depression.
  • Cope better with stress.

This two-part interactive workshop will provide participants with the opportunity to experience, and learn and develop proficiency in slow, diaphragmatic breathing as a simple skill for mental health practice.

  • facilitator-led workshops: 5 hours
  • self-directed learning and practice:1 hour

Facilitated by Dr Judy Lovas, the workshops will:

  • Translate and explain current research that supports clinical use of DB
  • Outline biological pathways involved in stress and relaxation
  • Consider the why, how and when to apply DB clinically

Participants will:

  • Gain benefits from the personal practice of DB
  • Develop skills to guide clients through a brief DB session
  • Learn to teach clients to practice DB in their daily life

Who should attend? Social workers who wish to understand and develop proficiency in DB as an effective therapeutic tool.

Additional resources provided:

  • Pre-reading
  • Supplementary handouts (self-directed practice and reflective activities)

6 hours of CPD activity: Category 2, skills and knowledge
AASW Credentials: Mental Health (FPS); Clinical

Learning Outcomes

Participants will be able to:

  • Define stress, relaxation and relaxation therapy
  • Evaluate leading research in DB as a therapeutic intervention for mood disorders
  • Identify biological mechanisms that link DB with mood outcomes
  • Experience and practice DB on a personal level
  • Apply DB to clients in a clinical setting


Dr Judy Lovas

Judy educates health and medical professionals the art and science of relaxation for chronic conditions. She has a Dip Ed in Adult Education and a PhD, which was a randomised, controlled trial in relaxation for psychological and immunological outcomes in people with spinal cord injury. She taught Psychology at University of Sydney and University of Technology, Sydney and developed TAFE’s first Massage Therapy course.

She taught relaxation classes in medical centres and now runs individual classes online. Judy studies and teaches Psychoneuroimmunology as evidence supporting the efficacy of relaxation therapies for chronic conditions such as anxiety, depression, pain, trauma and sleep disorders. When not working, Judy relaxes with family and friends.

The AASW is pleased to welcome Judy back to our program due to popular member demand.

Location and date

Live online: a Zoom link will be emailed to you prior to the workshop
20 October 2022: 12.00-3.00pm AEDT / 11.00-2.00pm AEST
27 October 2022: 12.00-2.00pm AEDT / 11.00-1.00pm AEST


Members: $395.00 (including GST)
Non-members: $470.00 (including GST)


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*Please note, registrations close 19 October 2022 at midnight AEDT.

AASW - Australian Association of Social Workers