Breathe Right! (Part 1): Do You Need Breathing Retraining?
|Vijai P. Sharma, Ph.D., psychologist, RYT
Usually we breathe in the automatic mode and are not conscious of our breathing. We become conscious of it only when we experience a breathing problem such as shortness of breath, chest tightness or a feeling of suffocation. Eastern societies in the ancient times emphasized conscious breathing for physical, mental and spiritual benefits. Importance of deeper, fuller and relaxed breathing for health and wellness cannot be overstated. Everyone healthy or otherwise should learn and make sure they breathe correctly. They should receive breathing retraining if they identify any signs of incorrect breathing in themselves.
Signs of Incorrect Breathing
Your breathing is incorrect/ irregular when you are not exerting and still experience any of the following signs:
Negative Effects of Incorrect Breathing
Chronic irregular breathing may cause one or more of the following:
Functional (non-structural) Causes
A faulty or incorrect breathing pattern such as habitual over breathing, breath holding or shallow breathing may be genetically acquired, learned or affected by physical and/or psycho-emotional factors. There may be structural causes for insufficient or restricted breathing, which is not the focus of this presentation
Please note this is not an exhaustive list but some of the functional causes are listed below:
Potential Benefits of Breathing training
In my experience even some of the yoga practitioners (even after several years of practice) breathe incorrectly. In my yoga classes whenever I specifically checked for breathing, on average, one out of ten students were incorrectly breathing. A large number of people with chronic illness, such as heart disease, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) or chronic pain, tend to breathe incorrectly. They had not given much thought to the process or mechanism of breathing. Their breathing was always automatic and subconscious. They never practiced conscious breathing so they could not correct it. Learn correct breathing and practice relaxed breathing. Avoid strained breathing.
Correct breathing and physical and mental relaxation, the two master skills can make a big difference in your quality of life. Learn physical and mental relaxation along with correct breathing to enjoy better quality of life, health and wellness. You may review techniques for physical and mental relaxation on www.mindpub.com
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