Breathing is something we do everyday and although it is an automatic process for most, being mindful of how to change your breath can improve your mood and have other physiological benefits.
For most types of exercise, aim to breathe out with effort, so for the hardest part of the exercise which is often the lifting part you need to exhale. Also aim to breathe through your nose, however if your exercise intensity increases then mouth-breathing will naturally occur. When working on core stabilising exercises aim to maintain a relaxed breathing pattern. Holding your breath when performing core exercise will increase intra abdominal pressure, your core muscle won’t stabilise and your efforts will be wasted! Exercise types such as Yoga, utilise breathing with movement patterns. Generally the breathe in corresponds to upwards movements, and the breathe out occurs with downward movements. This type of breathing pattern helps with movement patterning and body rhythm. Nasal breathing (through the nose) is also practised, which is why Yoga is known to reduce stress.
Try these exercises with a focus on breathing and posture, a lengthening through the spine, but not with a rigid position:
Breathing and Stress:
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