Most people rarely thinking about breathing, but it’s something that we do roughly 18 times per minute, 1,080 times an hour and 25,920 times a day. As such a simple, fairly automatic task, it may surprise you to learn that very few people are breathing properly, which can cause all sorts of problems, including high blood pressure, increased body aches and asthma, as well as contributing to anxiety and stress.
Most of us tend to take “sips of breath,” holding it when we’re anxious, which can cause a ripple of negative effects throughout the body.
Breathing the right way can help improve your balance and digestion, in addition to causing you to feel more relaxed.
Yoga guru Abhishek Sharma says, “Breathing is the most important aspect of wellness. Most people breathe shallow, which affects their health. Learning to breathe deep can greatly enhance your health.”
If you notice that your chest is moving as you breathe in, your upper neck, chest, and shoulder muscles are tight, you sigh or yawn frequently, or breathe out through your mouth rather than your nose, you’re most likely engaging in shallow breathing.
While it can take some practice, learning to breathe the right way can help you feel more relaxed, and significantly enhance your overall health and well-being.
One of the easiest ways to start is by learning to “draw on the well” by finding an image from the breath in the stomach to help you visualize it coming from the deepest part of the lungs and preventing shallow breathing. Make sure your shoulders are loose and relaxed. You need to use your diaphragm, the large sheet-like muscle that lies at the bottom of the chest cavity. To find, it place your left hand on your upper chest and your right hand on your abdomen, in the ‘gap’ of your rib cage.
When you breathe in and out, your left hand should remain still and only your right hand should move up and down. If your left hand is moving, your breathing is too shallow and you aren’t using your diaphragm like you should. Try changing your breathing so only your right hand moves while you do so. Try to breathe slowly and smoothly as rhythmic breathing helps to regulate the flow of oxygen and CO2, slow the heart rate and ease anxiety.
-The Alternative daily