What is ENO Breathe?
ENO Breathe is an award-winning breathing and wellbeing programme developed specifically for people recovering from COVID-19, who are still suffering from breathlessness and associated anxiety. Delivered by ENO in collaboration with Imperial College Healthcare teams entirely online, the programme focuses on breathing re-training through singing.
No prior experience or interest in singing is required to take part in ENO Breathe.
ENO Breathe is not a choir or singing group. It is a social prescribing (non-clinical) intervention that uses singing techniques to aid recovery from COVID-19.
ENO Breathe offers participants:
- An initial one-to-one online conversation with ENO Breathe session leaders to discuss participants’ suitability for the programme, explain what the programme involves, and answer any questions you might have.
- Six weekly group online workshop sessions, led by a professional singer from the ENO encourage participants to take part in exercises and activities specifically designed to support breathing control, providing tools for self-management of breath and anxiety.
- Access to bespoke online digital resources, designed to support participants between sessions. These include exercises, song sheets and audio and video materials, especially recorded by the ENO for participants on the programme.
- Access to post-programme weekly drop-in sessions, if participants wish to revisit exercises and songs in a friendly and relaxed environment with other participants who have also completed the programme.
Lullabies will be used as a way into exercises throughout the six weeks on the programme. Lullabies are expressly designed to calm and soothe, and have the benefit of being short, memorable and accessible to all.
What happens in a session and what are the online resources?
‘Singing lullabies builds emotional connections with the other activities and exercises on the programme. Participants leave sessions with a calming song in their hearts – and crucially – this creates a positive emotional connection to a wealth of tools and exercises to help manage their symptoms, making these exercises more memorable, more meaningful and more usable.’
Suzi Zumpe – Singing Specialist and Creative Director of ENO Breathe
The online weekly one hour sessions offer:
- Warm-up exercises to prepare the body and mind.
- Practical tools to support improvement in posture and breath control, encouraging self-management of anxiety and breathlessness.
- Guided and supported singing of culturally diverse lullabies, selected for their power to calm and soothe. These are memorable and accessible to all.
- A moment for participants to connect with each other in a safe and supportive environment.
The online resources contain:
- Lullabies to sing along with or listen to through a specially recorded playlist of lullabies used on the ENO Breathe programme.
- Lullabies from operas performed by ENO singers and players, selected and recorded especially for this moment in time for ENO Breathe participants to watch and listen to.
- Downloadable playlists for bedtime or moments of panic.
- Filmed exercise videos explaining and guiding viewers through breathing, vocal and warm-up techniques.
- Further exercises and tools for daily practise.
What happens after the programme?
Following the six week programme, participants will also have access to post-programme digital resources, designed to support them to continue the exercises on their own after the programme has finished.
In addition, all post programme participants will have access to weekly drop-in online sessions.