I have done two transformational breathwork sessions with a friend so far, with another one scheduled in a couple of days.
It is pretty obvious how breathing patterns reflect emotions and beliefs. As soon as there is a clash between how life is and how it should be, according to my stories about it, muscles tense up, there is a change in breathing patterns (for me, often more shallow) and emotions come up as well. There is a whole system of beliefs, emotions, muscle tension, breathing and behavior which all contribute to maintain a particular pattern. They are all mutually supporting of each other. It is their job, and they do it beautifully.
That also means that we can unravel that ball from any of those sides. We can investigate beliefs, be with emotions, allow muscles to relax, change behaviors, and we can also work with the breath. If a shallow and held breath contributes to those knots, then a more free, open and full breath allows the knot to begin unravel.
While those promoting transformation breathwork often have quite elaborate models of what is happening, what seems clear – even from my own limited experience so far – is that knots unravel. In a way, that is all I need to know. Breathe, and knots unravel.