Breathing Exercises

Breathing Exercises

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    Mindfulness breathing is a simple strategy to begin developing mindfulness skills. The act of practicing mindfulness can be challenging; the key is practice, practice, practice.

    Start by bringing your attention to your breathing.

    Breathe in through your nose, allowing the air to fill your lower belly.

    Then, breathe out through your mouth. Notice the sensations of each inhalation and exhalation.

    Continue the breathing exercise for a while. Then, begin to broaden your focus by noticing thoughts, feelings and sensations that arise in the moment.

    Notice each thought or sensation as it arises, without judging it good or bad and without pursuing it (letting it become a center focus, in other words).

    If you become distracted, return focus to your breathing and then expand your awareness again.
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    A , Internal Medicine, answered
    Breathing is something we don't think about very much because it's automatic, but it is actually a very important component of any exercise routine. If you have nothing to drink, you can survive for several days. If you have nothing to eat, you can survive for several weeks. But if you don't have oxygen, you can't survive for more than a few minutes. One of the most common mistakes people make while exercising is that they don't breathe correctly or they don't breathe at all. This can be the source of fatigue and overexertion. And this can result in shortness of breath and a painful stitch in your side, which can cause you to stop exercising all together. And worse, it can cause your blood pressure to rise.

    When you breathe correctly, you get enough oxygen in your system to increase your circulation and get the blood flowing to every part of your body, including the brain. That makes it easier for the brain to release the neurotransmitters that boost both your mood and your energy. If you're breathing properly during exercise, you will probably make an audible grunting or whooshing noise as you breathe in and out.
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    A , Internal Medicine, answered
    Breathing is something we don't think about very much because it's automatic, but it is actually a very important component of any exercise routine. When you breathe correctly, you get enough oxygen in your system to increase your circulation and get the blood flowing to every part of your body, including the brain. That makes it easier for the brain to release the neurotransmitters that boost both your mood and your energy. If you're breathing properly during exercise, you will probably make an audible grunting or whooshing noise as you breathe in and out.

    Here are some tips to keep breathing properly during your exercise routine (whichever type of exercise you choose):
    • Start with a warm-up -- you can warm up your breathing techniques at the same time you're getting your muscles ready for a workout. Take a few minutes to simply inhale and exhale and focus on your breathing.
    • Inhale through your nose, fill up your lungs, and exhale slowly through your mouth. Exhaling should take roughly twice as long as inhaling.
    • Breathe in on the exertion part of the exercise. For instance, if you are doing a squat, breathe in when you are bending your legs and moving downward, and breathe out when you are standing up again. This can help lower blood pressure and cortisol levels while supplying oxygen to the muscles.
    • Never hold your breath during exercise. This can cause your blood pressure to shoot up and lead to dizziness and fatigue.
    • Listen to your body. Don't let yourself get to the point where you're hyperventilating or gasping for air. That means you're working way too hard and you need to slow down and catch your breath.
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    A , Internal Medicine, answered
    Most people breathe the way they dance-they think they know what they're doing, but they really don't have a clue about how to do it right.

    Right now, stop everything and focus on your breathing. Look down. See anything moving? Probably not. That's because most people typically take very short, shallow breaths-the kind that simply comes from your chest. For you to really improve your lung function, you need to practice taking deep, whole breaths.

    What will deep breathing get you, besides stares on the subway? A lot, actually:

    • For one, it helps transport nitric oxide-a very potent lung and blood vessel dilator that resides in your nasal passages-to your lungs. So it makes your lungs and blood vessels function better.

    • Taking deep breaths helps your lungs go from 98-percent saturation of oxygen to 100-percent saturation of oxygen, and that little 2 percent can sometimes make a big difference in how you feel.

    • Another benefit is that it helps improve the drainage of your lymphatic system, which removes toxins from your body.

    • Of course, deep breathing also helps with stress relief. The deep breaths act as a mini-meditation--and from a longevity standpoint, it's an important stress-reliever.

    • Shifting to slower breathing in times of tension can help calm you and allow you to perform at higher levels, both mentally or physically.

    My recommendation? Take 10 deep breaths in the morning, 10 at night, and as many as you need when shooting free throws or after chasing your toddler down the cereal aisle.
  • 5 Answers
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    Deep breathing is a good way to relax. Try it a couple of times every day. Here's how to do it.
    • Lie down or sit in a chair.
    • Rest your hands on your stomach.
    • Slowly count to four and inhale through your nose.
    • Feel your stomach rise.
    • Hold it for a second.
    • Slowly count to four while you exhale through your mouth. To control how fast you exhale, purse your lips like you're going to whistle.
    • Your stomach will slowly fall.
    Repeat five to 10 times.

    This information is based on source information from the National Women's Health Information Center.
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    A , Internal Medicine, answered
    Muscles working hard during exercise need more oxygen, and they also produce more carbon dioxide. Special cells in the main arteries and brain stem detect those levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide, and these send signals to the brain and heart to increase breathing and pulse rates. This means that more blood is pumped throughout the body, picking up more carbon dioxide from the muscles, to be released in the lungs to be breathed out, and picking up more oxygen there to deliver to the muscles.
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    A , Health Education, answered

    You are going to expand on the breath work by adding alternate-nostril breathing. Place the thumb of your right hand by your right nostril and your right ring finger next to your left nostril. Gently close the right nostril by pressing it with your thumb as you inhale through the left nostril. Then close the left nostril with your ring finger, as you release your right nostril and slowly exhale. Then inhale through the left and exhale right. Do this for five minutes after you have completed the 10 minutes of deep breathing. If you can not, just chill and breathe for 15 minutes, you can cut it down to 10 minutes a day.

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    A , Alternative & Complementary Medicine, answered

    One thing you may commonly hear when people discuss the act of yogic breathing is that it requires us to utilize a "deep breath." This is usually in reference to using the full capacity of the lungs to take longer, slower breaths as part of an exercise.

    However, the act of taking slow, long breaths that use the full capacity of the lungs is actually an ideal way to breathe throughout the day. When I teach breathing to others, rather than call the act of taking these long breaths a "deep breathing" exercise, I call it a "full breathing" exercise. By taking longer, slower breaths, we increase our ability to remain centered--especially in response to conflict and tension.

    Is a full breath a normal breath? Not for most of us. But, with practice, it definitely can be. And when it does become what is normal, our health and our mood will benefit greatly as a result.

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    A , Alternative & Complementary Medicine, answered

    Pranic breathing delivers tremendous physiological and energetic benefits. The primary physiological benefits are:

    -improved functioning of your waste-removal system;
    -improved functioning of your cardiovascular system;
    -a stronger, more supple diaphragm, which is good for your whole body and mind.

    The primary energetic benefits include:

    -an increased capacity for generating high-quality prana;
    -indirect clearing of negative emotions, traumas, and limiting beliefs;
    -an increase in the size of your spiritual cord. (Your spiritual cord is a thread that attaches your crown chakra to your higher self or soul. It is also the primary valve through which congested or dirty prana is expelled from the energy body and fresh prana is drawn into the energy body. Dirty prana, however, in addition to contaminating your overall energetic body, shrinks the diameter of your spiritual cord because it clogs this valve. Pranic breathing draws in a great amount of high-quality prana, which cleans out this valve and expands the size of your spiritual cord.)
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    A , Alternative & Complementary Medicine, answered

    The physical benefits of pranic healing are:

    1. Improved functioning of your waste-removal system. When you perform pranic breathing, your diaphragm relaxes and assumes a much greater range of motion than it does during shallower breathing. It moves farther downward into the abdomen on the inbreath and farther upward into the chest cavity on the outbreath. This down-and-up wave motion of the diaphragm creates greater negative intrathoracic pressure, the suction effect that pulls lymph fluid up from the abdomen and pelvis into the chest, where it drains into the thoracic duct. From there it pours into one of the major veins running from the arm to the chest and then reenters the bloodstream, traveling to organs like the liver, spleen, and lungs to be cleansed. Pranic breathing helps move lymph through your organs and thus significantly improves your body’s ability to detoxify itself.
    2. Improved functioning of your cardiovascular system. Oxygenation is the process by which oxygen enters the lungs during inhalation and carbon dioxide leaves during exhalation. Pranic breathing increases oxygenation because it delivers more oxygen to the lower two-thirds of the lungs, which have a much richer flow of blood than does the upper third. The upper third of the lungs has a blood flow rate of one-tenth of a liter per minute, the middle third about two-thirds of a liter per minute, and the lower third about one to one-and-a-half liters per minute. The blood flow rate is the amount of blood moving through the lung tissue. Since the primary functions of the lungs are to get oxygen into the bloodstream and to carry away carbon dioxide from the bloodstream, it makes sense to get as much air as possible moving into and out of the parts of the lung where this is done most effectively. This is exactly what pranic breathing does. It helps your cardiovascular system function at peak capacity by increasing your intake of oxygen and reducing the strain on your heart.
    3. A stronger, more supple diaphragm. As noted previously, we commonly hold tension, stress, and negative emotions in or near the diaphragm. A tight diaphragm can result in shallow breathing, an uncomfortably tight chest, and stomach spasms, which can interfere with digestion. Daily practice of pranic breathing and the torso-loosening exercises in Chapter 4 of the book of Your hands can heal you help you stretch your diaphragm and release any tension you’ve accumulated there.