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Why Does Your Apple Watch Tell You To Breathe?

Health On Apple Watch

The Apple Watch is known to promote mindfulness and focuses on improving your health. One feature implemented in later versions of watchOS is your Watch prompting you to take a Breath. This might seem erratic or downright beginning for most, which begs the question, why does your Apple Watch tell you to breathe in the first place? 

Quick Answer

Your Apple Watch tells you to breathe at pre-defined times throughout the day using the Mindfulness application, which is set to twice daily by default. It does not correlate with stress or anxiety and can be disabled in the application.

In this article, we’ll detail why your Apple Watch tells you to breathe in the first place, how you can disable its notifications and whether the feature has more to it than it may originally seem.

Why Is My Apple Watch Telling Me To Breathe?

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Your Apple Watch tells you to breathe at pre-defined periods that have been set by default or adjusted by you in the Mindfulness application. So, if the Apple Watch tells you to breathe, don’t worry. It’s just a pre-defined indicator from the Watch.

The quickest way to eliminate this issue is to disable notifications from the application entirely. We’ve detailed the steps on how you can do exactly just that down below!

Is Apple Watch Breathe Reminders Triggered By Something?

No, your Apple Watch telling you to breathe is not triggered by anything other than a reminder which you can set yourself in the Mindfulness application. Contrary to what most think, having a high or low breath rate is not indicative of getting the alert.

Moreover, the Apple Watch cannot detect anxiety or asthma. So, it won’t act as a breathing reminder either. Newer watches like the Series 7 do have a Low Heart Rate notification. But, even that notification doesn’t trigger a breathing alert.

So, the only way for a breathing alert to pop up is for it to be manually set in the application. After doing so, the notification will pop up at that time and nothing else. 

How To Turn Off Breathe Alerts In Apple Watch

Breathe alerts are turned on by default on the Apple Watch. Turning them off requires you to head to the Health application. If you reset your iPhone or Apple Watch, you’ll need to turn off “Breathe” alerts again.

From The Apple Watch App on iPhone

Here’s how you can turn off your Apple Watch telling you how to breathe:

  1. Open the Apple Watch application on your iPhone.
  2. Now, scroll down till you find “Mindfulness”.
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  3. Once there, turn off all Mindfulness “Reminders” and the “Weekly Summary” to “Off”.
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  4. Now, to turn off all notifications, set the “Notification Settings” to “Notifications Off”.

If you are running an older version of watchOS, here’s how you can turn off breathe alerts on the Apple Watch:

  1. Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone.
  2. Now, head to “Breathe”.
  3. Tap on “Breath Reminders” and set them to “None”.

From The Apple Watch

You don’t need to access your paired iPhone to turn off breathe alerts on the Apple Watch. You can follow these steps to turn them off directly from the Apple Watch:

  1. Open Settings on your Apple Watch.
  2. Now, scroll down and head to “Mindfulness”.
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  3. Once there, turn off “Start of Day” and “End of Day”.
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  4. You can also disable all other notifications if they’re nagging you too.

Whether you are following steps from the Apple Watch or your iPhone, you’ll achieve the same result. If you have multiple watches, we recommend following the iPhone method as you can easily replicate steps for multiple devices more quickly.

Does My Apple Watch Know When I’m Stressed Or Anxious?

No, the Apple Watch has no indicator of whether you are stressed or anxious. All it can tell you is irregular or low heart rate. Besides, the Watch does not tell you to breathe because of stress or anxiety. It just follows a simple reminder.

However, breathing deeply and in the method promoted by your Watch will positively affect your overall mood and might help reduce anxiety and alleviate stress. So, while it may be helpful whenever you are anxious or stressed and is a feature worth keeping, it has no way to automatically detect if you are distressed and tell you to breathe.


The Apple Watch can do a whole lot for our health. Sadly, ensuring that we breathe at appropriate times and detecting stress or anxiety isn’t one of them (yet.) However, we still recommend keeping breathe alerts on unless they aren’t too annoying for you.

Sometimes, it feels good to be told to take a deep breath once in a while, especially with the hustle and bustle of our daily lives.

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