Judith P. Andersen, PhD: Reset, Refocus, Respond in Law Enforcement

Welcome to my conversation with Judith P. Andersen, PhD about her latest research paper: The International Performance, Resilience and Efficiency Program Protocol for the Application of HRV Biofeedback in Applied Law Enforcement Settings. We talk about the evidence based Reset, Refocus, Respond technique including the ‘reset breath’ and the importance of ‘grounding’ in the Refocus phase. And how it differs from Cyclic Sighing and other breathing tools. We also talk about the difference between relaxation and stress modulation in police work and the best ways to measure stress. Importantly, Judith stresses the use of raw beat-to-beat HR data during iPREP HRVB because it represents the neural activation or inhibition of the autonomic nervous system in real time. In contrast with commercially available products or programs typically present HRV algorithms or a general ‘stress’ or ‘coherence’ index generated from aggregated signals of autonomic activity that do not provide valid or interpretable data for modulating physiology in real-time ambulatory contexts. A great conversation about more than a decade of research into stress and performance/health and first responders.

Trainers are encouraged to read the published paper. In the paper there is a great overvieuw of existing breathing techniques and their evidence. And an complete manual for HRVB Training in Field Settings with Law Enforcement Officers! Trainers are encouraged to experiment with the described techniques, and integrate them into their training programs. Judith also invites trainers to contact her with questions for further guidance .


Introduction to Judith Andersen’s Work
Explanation of Heart Rate Variability (HRV) Measurement
Development of the Reset Refocus Respond Protocol
Use of Prolonged Exhalation Breath in Stress Management
Role of Video Recording in Scenario-Based Training
Introduction and Benefits of the Biofeedback App
Importance of Grounding in Police Training

Recovery breathing protocol
Integration of Biofeedback into Routine Training
Privacy Concerns and Data Security with Biofeedback Apps
Comparison of Breathing Protocols
Implementation and Evidence of Effectiveness in Police Training
Future Directions and Research Needs




Table from the paper: different breathing protocols

Abouth Judith P. Andersen

Judith Andersen is a health psychologist whose research interests focus on the biopsychosocial mechanisms by which stress impacts mental and physical health. In addition to lab studies, she uses ambulatory psychophysiological equipment to conduct field research with people who experience trauma and severe stress. Prof. Andersen’s on-going research projects include resilience training and research on the health and performance outcomes of psychophysiological stress intervention techniques for civilians, police and military personnel.

The paper



Podcast at the Police Academy Netherlands in 2023