Over the last few weeks I have had the pleasure to encounter many people new to yoga. The best part of this, in addition to of course guiding the practise, is all the questions I get, not the least because it gets my brain ticking too.
One of the most common questions is about the diaphragmatic breathing, also called belly or abdominal breathing. Whilst this is the most common thing to do for small children, as adults we tend to forget to use our diaphragm (the muscle below the ribcage, under our lungs) and breath with our chest i.e. top part of our lungs only. This results as short, shallow breaths. If we learn to use the whole extend of our lungs, our oxygen take increases, heart rate lowers, the blood sugar lowers, the free radicals are better eliminated from the body, your mind focuses more… the list goes on and on.
Here’s a small diagram to show the basic of diaphragmatic breathing.
You can find two breathing exercises from my earlier post about breathing here. Don’t worry if it takes a little bit of time to find the rhytm. Best is not to overthink, and you will find the flow eventually.
Having said that, I know today is Friday though so you might just want to watch this instead.