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            Rebirthing is a relaxing and energizing technique of breathing in a gently connected rhythm.  Its valuable results can be far reaching physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.  It most often leads to a deeper sense of self-appreciation, self-acceptance and inner nourishment.

            Each person is individual in needs, desires, perceptions and experiences.  By fully honoring and accepting oneself, one opens to life, energy, an inner sense of ethical choice and individuation.  As the experience of life expands, deep personal meaning is revealed from within the self and a feeling of well-being pervades.  Rebirthing can be a powerful initiatory tool and/or a valuable skill to use along the way on one’s personal path of self-exploration. 

            Physically, Rebirthing is an invaluable technique for relaxation.  It can assist in reducing stress, and increasing energy, vitality, stamina, health and oxygen flow to the whole body.  Breathing is one of the principle ways the physical body naturally cleanses itself.  Rebirthing can be utilized to open the breath fully so that one may experience a free and easy flow of air throughout the entire lung capacity.  It can be used to deal effectively with, reduce and sometimes completely relieve physical pain because it teaches the body a pattern of relaxation using breath.  Rebirthing is a great asset to women giving birth or during visits to the dentist, for example, because of its ability to decrease pain and stress.  It can also relieve life long patterns of tension held in the body.  Many people have successfully used this tool as part of an effective healing plan for a variety of illnesses and discomforts, including Asthma, Cancer and Multiple Sclerosis.


            Emotionally, Rebirthing often allows for the integration of past emotional ‘traumas’ and unresolved or repressed upsets.  Because one often holds one’s breath during emotional situations, e.g. sadness, grief, anger, fear, energy can be ‘frozen’ or blocked around those events.  By breathing fully and freely, ‘frozen’ or blocked energy around those memories can be released and integrated, relieving the ‘trauma’ associated with the past experience.  Rebirthing teaches the body a pattern of breathing and relaxing while consciously experiencing emotions and feelings rather then with-holding, repressing or dramatically acting them out.  Connections have been discovered between emotional traumas and physical problems in the body.  In breathing sessions it is possible to release and integrate the energy held in emotional pain.  This can also relieve physical symptoms.


            Mentally, Rebirthing can help bring forward a clarified perspective and assessment of situations and events, past and present.  It assists in the ability to view situations form new and various view points.  This can be an aid in decision making.  It also assists in a deeper acceptance and appreciation of oneself and others.  Many people report permanent, positive shifts of perspective and deep loving feelings for themselves and others.  The acknowledgement of new viewpoints brings forward a flexibility of possibilities which carries over into other areas in one’s life. 

            Many of the perspectives we have about ourselves, others and life have been held unchallenged since childhood.  Severely limiting perspectives can greatly inhibit our self-esteem, self-expression, pleasure, opportunities, relationships and potential.  Often these perspectives are not the only ones held by our psyches but the alternative viewpoints to the ones we consciously accept may be hidden away from our awareness.  Rebirthing sessions may spontaneously bring forward more expanded possibilities of belief and perspective that an individual holds but may not be aware of .  Simple breathing can put one into touch with material inside which brings a feeling of renewed aliveness, possibility and a connection with areas which are normally less reachable because of limited perspectives held on an outer level.  People often shed inhibitions that they have been holding for years, giving way to more laughter, joy, pleasure, self-esteem, strength, passion and self-honesty.  Rebirthing helps to reveal and rediscover dimensions of self and possibilities of being.


            Spiritually, people report feeling more in tune with themselves, more relaxed, less anxious, and more intuitive.  There is often an experience of feeling renewed and revitalized.  It has been defined by many as enhancing feelings of being more connected with one’s own sense of spirit and a peaceful feeling of well being. 




  • Open, easy and free breathing
  • Increased energy, vitality and youthfulness
  • Stress reduction
  • Deep relaxation
  • Greater self-appreciation and self-acceptance
  • Deeper self-understanding
  • Stronger sense of self
  • A way of clearing the mind
  • Improved health and well being
  • Development of deeper intuitive insight
  • Ability to experience, accept and relax with emotions and feelings
  • Increasing ability to handle intensity, excitement, intimacy and energy
  • Increased ability to tap creative flow
  • Easier pregnancy and childbirth experiences
  • Ability to relax into physical pain and intense physical sensation (can even be used to alleviate pain completely)
  • Increased ability to stay centered and calm in the presence of others who are upset.
  • Increased ability to tap feelings of deep nourishment and communion with one’s own internal sense of spirit.
  • Release of life long patterns of physical and emotional tension.


Rebirthing is composed of 3 phases:

  1. Dry
  2. Warm Water
  3. Cold Water

            Rebirthing is most often begun in the dry phase.  These sessions take place in a comfortable room in a reclining position in the presence of a Rebirther (a trained guide).  At least 10 sessions and a feeling of comfort with the process in this phase is completed before moving to the next phase. 


            Phase two is Warm Water Rebirthing.  During this phase the sessions take place in a hot tub or bath.  The warm water combined with the connected breathing brings forward deeper, often more pleasurable feelings and material. A deeper state of relaxation is often achieved.  The number of sessions in this phase varies.


            Phase three takes place in cold water.  This is a very exhilarating experience.  People may reject the whole idea of this phase until they experience it. Then they love it.  This phase is done by slowly immersing the body inch by inch into the water while continuing the connected breathing rhythm.  One does not continue with the next inch until feeling completely relaxed and comfortable.  Again the number of sessions of this phase can vary and is optional.






            A Rebirther is a trained guide for the Rebirthing sessions.  The Rebirther has been through many Rebirthing sessions and attended trainings in supporting others through the process.  Because of Rebirthers’ experience and knowledge of the process they can provide a safe and nourishing environment for clients to experience their own process.  The best gifts a good Rebirther brings to a session are trust, intuition and compassion, the kind and amount of training they have received can vary.


            It is the Rebirther’s job to be fully present and supportive during the breathing session.  In the initial stages of the process, the clients is learning a pattern of breathing in a connected, relaxed sequence.  Since it is possible to vary precise rhythms from faster to slower or shallower to deeper or to have difficulty finding an appropriate rhythm, the Rebirther is there to help.  The Rebirther can assist the client in establishing first comfortable connected breathing and then the appropriate and most useful rhythm.  The appropriate rhythm can change through out a session.


            It is also a Rebirthers job to teach clients how to Rebirth themselves.  A good Rebirther supports clients in evaluating and intuiting the appropriate rhythm of breathing for themselves as the sessions progress.  By the end of 12 or so sessions clients will hopefully feel ease in rebirthing themselves although they may elect to continue working with Rebirthers.


Once clients can successfully Rebirth themselves the Rebirther’s presence provides support and added feelings of safety which can assist clients in touching deeper inner material if desired.


Clients may have discoveries about themselves or their relationships with others such as family, spouse or job.  Often the Rebirther’s role is just to listen and accept and perhaps to help clarify the perspective being expressed.  The Rebirther may also present alternative perspectives which will help the client to see the situation in a more open minded way.  It is not the Rebirther’s job to correct the client’s viewpoint but to offer a wider set of possibilities.  This is very helpful.


It is recommended to work with one Rebirther until the process is integrated and one feels comfortable Rebirthing oneself (usually 12 to 15 sessions), then working with different Rebirthers as desired.  This is because the presence of different Rebirthers can be valuable in working with different inner material.



            A Rebirthing session consists of two parts, the actual breathing session itself and sharing and consultation with the Rebirther.


            The breathing portion of the Rebirthing session brings forward sensations of energy flowing through the body.  They have been described as a pleasant and delicate, flowing electrical current, also as a heightened sense of inner alertness, a relaxing vibrational hum.  These sensations often heighten as one relaxes more and more into the rhythm of breathing and an acceptance of self and the process. 

            The energy flow described is heightened by gently connected conscious breathing.  Clients are placed in a reclining position so that full relaxation can be achieved.  Clients start by consciously becoming aware of how they are breathing,  Gradually, one begins by gently drawing in air and then relaxing fully during the exhale, followed by the next inhale. Without any pause between the inhale and the exhale or the exhale and the inhale.  One desires to keep the length of the inhale steady, relax the exhale fully and eliminate all pauses so that a gentle, connected, flowing cycle is established.  This may seem difficult at first but within a few minutes the sense of laboring to breathe dissipates, an ease and flow develops and breathing becomes deeply pleasurable as the pattern is continued.  The length of the inhale is a variable that is adjustable, as is where the inhale is directed in the lung cavity, i.e. upper chest, lower chest, etc.  By taking 5 or 6 breathes in the manner just described one can assess one’s own breathing.  Is there tightness anywhere?  Is it difficult to relax fully on the exhale?  Several sessions of Rebirthing open up areas where the breathing is difficult and establish the connected rhythm.  Once the breathing is fully opened, this technique can be easily utilized during ties of stress and tension. 

            As one continues the connected breathing rhythm, a pleasurable energy current begins to build.  It builds, peaks and then subsides.  This is called a ‘cycle’.  A Rebirthing session usually consists of one to three cycles, although this varies.  The intensity also varies from session to session.  At the end of the session one feels relaxed and energized and a sense of feeling complete.  The symptoms of strong energy flow have subsided. 

            There usually comes a very pleasurable point in the initial series of sessions in which the breath is fully open and free.  It has been described as feeling ‘as if the breath is breathing you.’  This can be re-experienced in later sessions.  People also often experience a feeling of breathing fresh, clean, cool mountain air which tastes sweet regardless of where they actually are.

            There are varying theories among Rebirthers as to the advantages of nose breathing versus mouth breathing.  It is advantageous to feel comfortable completing cycles in each style.  It is not recommended to shift from one to the other during a breath.  To inhale in the nose and them exhale through the mouth or the reverse inhibits the connection between the  inhale and the exhale.  It is this connection which is an important part of the breath used in Rebirthing.


            People often experience deep psychological insight and clarity during sessions and a feeling of ease, self-appreciation and wellbeing. Many people have experienced memories of past events, including physiological experiences of birth, the womb and infancy.  These memories can release patterns of tension in the body held there since those experiences.  Other possibilities are insight and understanding of unresolved problems, release of long held fears, strong feelings of love for self and others, clarity about decisions, feeling of deep inner nourishment, spontaneous disappearance of physical symptoms of disease, a more youthful appearance, a glow and softness to the skin, the return of feeling to areas previously numb, emotional releases, intuitive flashes, spiritual experiences, joy, laughter, full and effortless breathing, instant dreams, vitality and aliveness, complete relaxation, harmony, peace, deep feelings of safely and trust, self-discovery and self-acceptance, recognizing life long patterns of thought, perspective and behavior.

            A Rebirthing session usually includes a consultation between the client and the Rebirther.  The consultations focus on material from the breathing session, discussing and sharing any feelings, insights or concerns during the length of the client/Rebirther relationship.  One might discuss problems, fears, successes, insights, dreams.  The Rebirther may bring forward exercises to strengthen self-appreciation and aid in tapping one’s own areas of inner wisdom and intuitive abilities.  A well trained Rebirther wants to encourage the client to open doors of self-discovery and work with the material coming forth from with in the client in a nourishing environment.

            Through the breathing process and consultation life long patterns of behavior and thought are often revealed.  By conscious recognition of the patterns in one’s daily life, one can appreciate and learn from them rather than feeling at the effect of them.  A well trained Rebirther has an ability to observe these patterns and support their discovery by the client. 


         In the first few sessions of Rebirthing, people can experience symptoms  which they may first interpret as distressing.  One of these can be a great deal of tinglig in various areas of the body.  Tingling can feel similar to the kind of ‘pins and needles’ expression used to describe how one’s hand might feel when the circulation has been impaired and we say it has ‘fallen asleep’.  This tingling can be felt in various parts of the body.  Most often it is felt in the arms and hands, legs and feet and the jaw and mouth area.  Another symptom sometimes experienced is a stiffening and curling of the hands or stiffness in other body areas and a feeling that they cannot be moved.  Through years of experience I have found these symptoms to be a very curious phenomenon both in my own sessions in Rebirthing and in observing others.  I have seen people who seem unable to move their hands reach down unknowingly with complete ease and scratch their leg and then return to the same stiffened position.  In my own experiences I have found that if I fully allow myself to be present and accept the whole situation the way it is and tell myself the truth about how I feel, as well as focusing on connected relaxed breathing, then the stiffness quickly dissipates and turns into a warm feeling of increased pleasure.  In observing others, I have also found that when they accept and be with themselves while continuing relaxed connected breathing it disappears immediately.  Some people prefer to fight and struggle with it until it dissipates on its own or as the cycle comes to completion.  The degree to which anyone might experience these symptoms varies widely.  Some people never experience them at all.  Often the symptoms can be seen as good news.  For they may be indicating that the client is approaching some new material for self discovery which is blocked form conscious view.  As the client opens to accepting and appreciating that material not only do the symptoms disappear but also one opens to more energy flow and a more expansive view of self, which is rewarding and stimulating.  The symptoms do not reflect the quality of the sessions.  It seems the person most determined to control and hold onto narrow perspectives of self and life that experiences the most difficult sessions at first.  The only material that can come forward with in the session is that which is within the client.  It is the client opening to new perspectives and accepting self that best supports a comfortable session when the symptoms appear.  Of course, the connected breathing rhythm always dissipates the symptoms as one just keeps breathing.  It is within the first few sessions of Rebirthing that these symptoms are most widely experienced, dissipating in intensity as sessions continue.

           Sometimes in sessions people seem to go to sleep or lose awareness, “go unconscious”.  Going to sleep often happens when the physical body is very tired and that is what it most needs to do.  The sleepiness especially comes up as the body relaxes more and more form the breathing.  It is often best at that point to let people sleep for 20 to 25 minutes, which refreshes the body, and then let clients determine whether they are then ready to continue the breathing session or go home and sleep.   Sometimes people lose conscious awareness in the session and have instant dreams.  If the material is remembered it can hold valuable images for the person. Sometimes during these times, the breathing can become very shallow and the person may feel startled when they awake.   This can happen in the time period before material comes to consciousness that the person hasn’t looked at before or a way of avoiding feelings.  It may also be a way of the body obtaining full relaxation momentarily.  It seems to be a natural mechanism of the body and the self.  In any case, the Rebirther encourages the person to take a few deep breaths upon waking which alleviates the startled feeling if it occurs.  If there seems to be more sleeping than breathing for a number of sessions it is sometimes helpful to have a discussion about what might be the cause and what might be done about it.  The well trained Rebirther observes and works with these symptoms for a maximum benefit to the client.


        Often Rebirthers will offer group Rebirthing experiences.  Here several people will gather and breathe together with a few Rebirthers in attendance to provide support and guidance.  Group Rebirthing can be very valuable in one’s process.  It is best to do group Rebirths after one feels completely comfortable Rebirthing oneself. 




         Rebirthing is not hypnosis or mind control.  The breathing induces a natural, altered state of awareness.  People feel very present during the session but not necessarily aware of what is going  on externally around them as much as what is going on inside of them. 


         Sometimes Rebirthers will utilize a tool known as affirmations to help clients to shift their perspective.  An affirmation is generally a simple sentence or thought the person uses by repeating or affirming it over and over until that perspective is fully acceptable as a reality.  It is a well known metaphysical principle that “what you focus on expands”.  The more you think or perceive something to be a certain way, the more it tends to look and be that way to you.  For example, if clients feel that they hate themselves and deserve to be rejected, then they will perceive everyone else as also feeling the same way about them and interpret behavior toward them as rejecting.  This can severely limit their pleasure and opportunities in life.  By affirming that they love themselves and deserve to be loved and accepted by others over and over again until they can touch and feel the part of themselves inside which does love the self a whole new perspective opens up to who they are and what is possible.  The components that make affirmations work are a combination of thought and desire.  

            It is important when using affirmations to pay attention to the “response column”.  The “response column” is the part of the mind that is insistent that the new thought being offered is not true and seems determined to warn one over and over again against believing it.  For example in the beginning stages of using the affirmation “I Love myself,” one might immediately notice the mind say, “No I don’t, I hate myself.”  If one tries to ignore and repress that response it will only get stronger and more insistent and undermine the results being achieved by the affirmation.  If one notices it and allows it to be there without trying to avoid or destroy it, it seems to lose its power.  One hears the mind’s denial of the affirmation and acknowledges it because of course one thinks that about oneself or one wouldn’t be using the affirmations.  The response column can also uproot thoughts from the subconscious that one was not aware of before, but which were coloring conscious perspectives.  Affirmations open up the mind to alternative perspectives.  It doesn't mean the thought: “I hate myself.” Goes away and never comes back, it just is no longer the thought that controls how one always feels about the self.  Affirmations are a wonderful tool of self discovery and a great deal of fun to use.  One can learn that it is possible o really make shifts in perspective by choice and to actually obtain results affirmed.


            It is recommended that you use your name in affirmation statements, that you affirm them in all three persons: I, Jane; You, Jane; She, Jane.  Affirmations can be written out ten or twenty times a day, chanted, spoken to your reflection in the mirror, or in a variety of possibilities.  It is not recommended that you try to affirm other people doing things you think you want them to do.  That approach is ineffective, disappointing and manipulative.  Affirmations are an ancient tool and have been taught for hundreds of years.  There is a great deal of information available on their use from many sources.



         When people first discover Rebirthing they sometimes express a fear of Hyperventilation.  This is a rapid, shallow and uncontrollable breathing which is considered dangerous if not brought under control.  Usually someone experiencing hyperventilation is told to breathe into a paper bag to increase the level of Carbon dioxide in the blood and thus restore normal breathing.  Some Doctors working with Rebirthing have reported that Rebirthing can be effective in helping people with Hyperventilation tendencies..  At one time, a hospital in Santa Cruz, California would call in Rebirthers when a person was admitted to the emergency room with Hyperventilation.  It is possible that Hyperventilation is brought about by emotional stress.  The Rebirthing process seems to be effective in alleviating the Hyperventilation symptoms.  Although I have sometimes had clients who appeared to Hyperventilate in their sessions and I have also appeared to do so in my own process, the rapid breathing has never produced any dangerous results and in fact has enhanced the session  I have never heard of any problems in any Rebirthing session from Hyperventilation which required medical attention.





         A Rebirthing session usually lasts from 2 to 3 hours.  A session includes: Time for the Rebirther and client to share with each other and discuss any current issues, a full breathing session, further consultation after the breathing is complete and time for final sharing and re-entry.  The actual breathing takes from 1 to 2 hours.  Most people experience it as a much shorter span of time.



         A minimum of 12 to 15 sessions is recommended for the initial series, spaced approximately one each week apart.  The schedule is flexible depending upon the client.  The initial sessions include at least 10 sessions of dry rebirthing and then several sessions of warm water rebirthing, followed usually by a few sessions of cold water rebirthing.  At the conclusion of the initial series the client should have enough experience to use the techniques without assistance and with results if desired.  Often people elect to experience more sessions with other Rebirthers and some go on to train to be Rebirthers themselves.  After the initial series, the number os sessions in a series experienced with other Rebirthers is negotiated between each client and Rebirther.



         In general Rebirthings cost $100.00 to $150.00 per session.  Wet Rebirthing may be more expensive because of the costs of the hot tub used for the session.  Rebirthers determine their own rates of charge.  Some will charge small amounts, others a great deal.  Some Rebirthers will negotiate if necessary.  Since Rebirthers enjoy rebirthing they want to provide the service for people at reasonable costs.  Since the initial set of sessions consists of 12 to 15, it is advisable to determine what you can pay reasonably and find a Rebirther who can work with you.




         Choosing one’s initial Rebirther is on of the most important parts of the rebirthing process.  Picking a Rebirther one feels comfortable with and can trust is crucial.  It is recommended that clients ask themselves, “Would I feel comfortable being vulnerable with this person?”  If not, it is best to continue interviewing Rebirthers until one is found that one feels sure about.  If the client comes to distrust the Rebirther ad cannot resolve it through sharing and discussion with his or her it is best to change Rebirthers.  A series of sessions with a man and a series of sessions with a woman are highly recommended.




         Rebirthing in the format presented here was originally brought forward in the early 1970’s by Leonard Orr in California  it was initially started by having people fully relax in a hot tub while being supported.  The idea developed from Leonard Orr’s experiences of staying in warm water baths for long periods of time.  Over several years, it became apparent that the key to the transformations and experience was held in the relaxed connected breathing.  The experiences with breathing then developed into the present form.  Over a million people have been rebirthed all over the world.  Several different factions of beliefs and variations of the technique have also developed.  The actual use of breath as a transformational tool is ancient.



         The name Rebirthing was chosen because of two connotations.  The first is that the word “rebirth” also means renewal.  People experiencing Rebirthing feel a renewed sense of self and vitality about life.  Secondly, the name comes from the idea of actually re-experiencing and remembering one’s physical birth.  Many people have had memories, visual and physiological of their birth experience, time spent in the womb and during infancy in their sessions.  These memories are often later verified by people who were

present during that time of the client’s life.  It is quite remarkable to witness the verification of an early memory that the client has had no prior intellectual information about before the emergence of the memory in a Rebirthing session.



         Rebirthing is an exhilarating and rewarding experience which allows us to open up to the awareness of the energy of life within ourselves.  Who we are as human beings is much more vast than our normal awareness has the capacity to comprehend.  Yet, through tools such as rebirthing we can reach deep, rich areas of who we are. let them touch our conscious awareness and share them with the people surrounding us, bringing to ourselves and others an expanded arena of life and love in which to be. 

         When we begin to touch, love and appreciate deep levels of ourselves that we may not have been allowing ourselves to embrace previously, we often make changes in our lives, which are inclusive of this new awareness.  This might include leaving unhappy jobs or situations and finding new ones, which really inspire us.  We may allow ourselves to do thing we have always wanted to do.  We surround ourselves with people who can really love and accept us as we are rather than those who cannot.  We speak up, saying what we think and sharing how we feel because who we are and how we are is acceptable and valuable to ourselves.  People begin to listen to us in a new way.  They may seek us out to be in our love, energy or just to receive food for thought.  In turn, we ourselves are opened to new possibilities in experiencing and appreciating others and life.  

Rebirthing is a gift we give to ourselves with lifetime rewards.




         Gayle E Carlton has an extensive background in the Rebirthing field.  She began working with the technique in 1978.  She has maintained a private Rebirthing practice for nine years and has actively participated in the management and production of cooperative Rebirthing centers, weekend trainings and long term programs designed to teach Rebirthing, self-appreciation, self-leadership and personal development.

         For three and one half years she was a member of the staff of Theta Seminars in San Francisco, including a term as staff coordinator.  Theta Seminars was a cooperative rebirthing center, teaching all phases of Rebirthing.  She has participated as a staff member in (3) 6-month personal development programs working with 20 to 35 participants and an 8 week course designed specifically for couples desiring to enhance their relationships.  She also worked in San Francisco and New York City from 1981-1984 in various phases of the production and promotion of the Loving Relationships Training.

For the last 3 years she has been studying and integrating the energetic healing and expansional work of Alex Lukeman and V. Brugh Joy, M.D. 

         She has been training Rebirthers since 1986 and has led numerous seminars and workshops around the country.  Some of the subjects have been Self Analysis, Rebirthing, Parental Disapproval Syndrome, Relationships, Self-Esteem, Intuition, energetics, Self Empowerment, Prosperity and women’s discussion groups.  She has been privileged to have trained and worded side by side with most competent and successful Rebirthers in the country. 

         Gayle was originally educated at West Valley College and San Jose State University in California, majoring in Speech communication.

         Gayle brings all of her collective education and experience together in the support of her clients self appreciation and discovery 

For more information on Rebirthing Breathwork, The Loving Relationships Training,

The Nine Month Program, and Personal Growth Seminars, contact:


The New York Rebirthing Center  Upper East Side  Maureen Malone (215) 431-8838 / 212 534-2969

e-mail:  maureenmalone@earthlink.net         Web site:  http://www.newyorkrebirthingbreathwork..com

The Philadelphia Rebirthing Center  1027 69th Avenue  Philadelphia  PA 19126

                        Tony Lo Mastro (215) 424-4444     Fax  (215) 924-6808    e-mail: tonylomastro@gmail.com 


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