The benefits of breathing right are both physical and emotional. It even gives you a sharper mind and smaller waistline!
Good breathing is a major component of good health, yet many of us spend our lives taking too-shallow breaths that can increase our stress levels. Learning to breathe right can help us get rid of chronic pain, constipation, skin problems, anxiety and insomnia.
For most of us, breathing is nothing more than an automatic function that keeps us alive, a steady flow that brings in vital oxygen and expels carbon dioxide. But unlike heartbeat or digestion, breath is a bodily function we can consciously control. If you’ve ever taken a deep breath to keep a panic attack at bay, then you already know the wonders breathing can have on your wellbeing. Not only will paying regular attention to your breath give you a good reading on your mental and emotional state, you’ll also tap into an easy and effective way to manage stress and anxiety.
How to breathe properly
The first step toward using your breath more effectively is to pay attention to it. Notice what your breath is doing when you’re stressed, when you’re happy, during sex, and while doing exercise. Once you understand the way you breathe, you can start to modify it. Breathing is integral to most forms of yoga and is ultimately a more important part of the practice than the physical postures.
Learning good breathing techniques
The key to good technique is learning how to breathe with your diaphragm. That’s the muscle beneath your rib cage, the same one you use for singing or laughing.
HOW TO BREATHE RIGHT
Method 1: One way is to expand the inhalation time, followed by complete and long chants of Om, in which the exhalation automatically lengthens.
Method 2: Ujjayi breathing is known as ‘victorious breathing’. If you are following the Ujjayi breathing, make your throat tight and breathe out as though your throat was a valve that lets out air bit by bit. Turn your attention to the sound in the throat like a hiss or the sound of the ocean when you are standing far off, and can only hear it.
Method 3: Alternate nostril breathing or what we simply call Pranayama, allows both sides of the brain to collaborate by using alternate nostril at a time. When you press your right nostril and breathe through your left, the oxygen reaches the side of your brain that ‘feels’. And when you press your left nostril to let the oxygen reach the right side of your brain, you are giving fodder to the ‘thinking’ side.
Follow these breathing techniques and stay healthy. If you are facing problem while breathing then you must schedule an appointment with our cardio therapist, Dr. Mitashi. She is a well-known physiotherapist who has presented heart and lung researches all over the world in Delhi and who guides her patients in their journey of managing the stress and breathing effectively.