You breath every minute of every day. Breathe in, then breathe out. It’s a routine you are not even aware of, simply a way to sustain your life and keep oxygen flowing in your body, refreshing your mind and all that. Right?
Well, not exactly. Breathing can be much more than just a habit. There are a few ways of breathing – and even a few breathing exercises that can be of some interest to you. Like, for example, did you know that there is a certain exercise that can help you lose weight? At least I didn’t.
And even if we take a look at Buddhism and its growing popularity – when they talk about meditation, they talk about mainly focusing on your breathing. So there’s got to be more to that than it simply being a process aimed at sustaining life.
Let’s take a look at some breathing exercises that are not that commonly known and are used for different purposes. And who knows? Maybe you’ll find something that helps you.
1. Breathing to help you lose weight
Obviously it’s not the regular everyday breathing we’re talking about here. This is a special kind of exercise that attempts to help you lose weight by increasing the level of your metabolism. And it only lasts for five minutes, so why not give it a try?
- Sit down and cross your legs.
- Straighten your back and put your hands on your knees.
- Close your eyes and relax.
- After you’ve done so, inhale and exhale hard.
- Keep repeating and keep an uninterrupted pace.
- But don’t exhale right after you’ve inhaled – pause for a second or two after each time you inhale and each time you exhale.
2. Stress release breathing
You know that time when somebody gets angry and somebody else tells him “Deep breaths, deep breaths”? Yeah. You definitely do.
See, deep breathing allows the body to relax and reduce levels of stress. If you don’t believe me, try this next time you feel like you’re about to snap under all that tension.
- Get to a place you feel comfortable in.
- Sit down, lie down, do whatever will help you feel relaxed the most.
- Close your eyes.
- Take a deep breath in, not a shallow one like the ones we all take on a daily basis without even paying a thought – then breathe out.
- You will need to breathe with your diaphragm, not your chest – this means that your stomach will have to rise.
By the way, this is the way actors are taught to breathe – with all that running, jumping and talking on stage shallow breaths just won’t cut it.
There is a way for you to understand whether you’re breathing with your diaphragm – simply place one hand on your stomach. You should feel it rise and then lower. When you’ve gotten the hang of it, take five deep, deep breaths. Breath all the way into your belly until it’s filled with air then let it out slowly and calmly.
We’re advising you to try this out with five breaths first – if you feel better, you can do it for five to ten minutes. And if you want to achieve even better results, do it twice a day every day. You’ll soon start to feel more relaxed, less stressed and paying more attention to your breathing.
3. Breathing for lung capacity
You know that every workout is aimed at improving the function of a given muscle. Well it’s the same with lungs. Breathing is their daily, hourly, minutely exercise. So how can you improve them? Let’s find out.
- First, stand up.
- Straighten your posture.
- Arch your back.
- Now take a big breath out – make sure that there is almost no oxygen in your lungs.
- After you’ve done so, take a big breath in.
- Keep in mind that you must breathe in slowly.
- Fill up your lungs with all the air you can possibly take in – be sure to not move or in any way disrupt your posture – and then hold it in.
- Try holding your breath for ten seconds – then slowly exhale.
- Do the same exercise at least two more times – and make sure you do it every day.
- You’ll discover the differences in no time.
As I mentioned above, actors need to learn how to breathe in order to withstand the pressure of the stage. They need to learn how to project their voice, fill up the entire place, be heard from any part within the hall – and this is all done with the help of breathing.
They have to undergo special classes throughout their education that are solely focused on teaching them how to inhale and exhale air.
So, if you’re interested in further breathing techniques, you can always search the internet – or take up acting as a hobby.
There are a number of places where you can learn acting in your spare time – and it comes along with multiple breathing exercises. Or if the stage isn’t really your thing, maybe you should consider taking up yoga – or martial arts, for example. All of these keep a focus on breathing.
And learning how to breathe properly will soon give interesting results – like, for example, better sleep at night.
Due to the increased pace of our society you are even forced to breathe shallow, as there are many things to think about. So take a break, take a breath and get your head straight. Good day!