Every day I help clients to learn how to correctly breathe using just a few simple techniques. Here are 3 of my favourite breathing techniques you can start doing today!
Breathing is such an essential part of a healthy body. Just breathing properly is one of the simplest things you can do to improve your health, reduce your levels of stress and boost your energy. As B.K.S. Iyengar says; Breathing is the prime mover of all activity.
Diaphragmatic breathing. Place one hand on your chest, and one on your abdomen just below belly button. Inhale through the nose, and draw air in and down into lower 1/3 area, pushing diaphragm down and belly button out. As you slowly exhale through nose or mouth, draw your belly button in towards spine.
Supine breathing with water bottle. Lie on your back with your knees bent. Place a water bottle (about half-full recommended) on your belly button, and support with one hand; place the other hand on your chest. Take a deep breath in through your nose, focusing on raising the water bottle up as your diaphragm expands. Feel the water bottle gently lower back down, as you exhale through your nose or mouth.
‘4 point stance’. Also known as the horse stance. Start on all fours, with your knees beneath your hips and your hands beneath your shoulders. Inhale through the nose and let your belly button drop down as your diaphragm expands. As you do this place one hand on your belly button area to feel the breath moving in and out. Exhale through your nose or mouth and draw your belly button back in towards your spine.
For more exercises to help you relax and improve your sleep, see my Breathing and Stretching video series.