Breathing for Life
Advantages of Deep Breathing
The benefits of deep breathing include: relaxation, an improved ability to handle stress, regulation of emotions, improves mental clarity to the present moment and improves being centered during challenging situations. It transforms our tension energy into relaxation energy turning off the release of stress hormones and turning on the body’s ‘relaxation response which involves lowering blood pressure, decreased heart rate, and a feeling of calm.
Deep rhythmic breathing with a change in posture allows the lungs to expand, relaxes muscle tension, balancing brain chemistry by increasing the levels of ‘feel good’ hormones (oxytcin and prolactin) while decreasing the stress hormones )cortisol, adrenaline and norepinephrine.
What kind of breather are you?
Chest or belly, nose or mouth? If you don’t know if you are a nose or mouth breather, ask a friend. If you place one hand on your chest and the other on your abdomen, take normal breaths and while looking down see if the hand on your chest rises first. If so, you tend to breathe from your chest. If your hand on your abdomen rises first, you are more of an abdominal breather. You want to be more of an abdominal breather than chest breather.