Yoga is well known for teaching participants how to correctly deep breathe. What you may not know is that deep breathing exercises play an important role in mental mediation, strengthening muscles, and reducing the stress in your life. Great, but what if you aren’t into yoga? Can deep breathing still benefit you? It sure can!
Think about it – breathing is at the heart of every minute of our lives. We breathe in, we breathe out – it’s what keeps us alive. But when you learn to practice good breathing, it can give you more energy, totally relax you, improve your mental clarity, help provide your organs with more oxygen, keep you looking and feeling younger.
It can be done anywhere. While you are in your car, at your desk, at the park, in bed, while you are cooking dinner, and just about anywhere you can think of. It’s that simple. Inhale and count to 15 seconds. Hold for 5 seconds, then slowly repeat. This will exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide, which is exactly what your blood needs.
Here are two breathing exercises:
Exercise 1: The Stimulating Breath
The Stimulating Breath is based on a yoga breathing technique, and its focus is to raise vital energy and increase your alertness. When you do it correctly, you will feel invigorated, and experience heightened awareness. You should feel the effort in the abdomen, the back of the neck, and the chest. Try this breathing exercise whenever you need an energy boost.
Exercise 2: The Relaxing Breath Exercise
This exercise is very simple, and it takes little time. You can do this anywhere. Sit with your back straight while learning the exercise – after that, you can sit however you like.
- Place the tip of your tongue against the ridge of tissue just behind your upper front teeth, and keep it there the entire time.
- Exhale through your mouth around your tongue. If you find this awkward try pursing your lips slightly.
- Exhale completely through your mouth, while making a whoosh sound.
- Close your mouth and quietly inhale through your nose while counting to five silently.
- Hold your breath for a count of seven.
- Exhale completely through your mouth. Again, make a whoosh sound to a count of nine.
Now inhale again and repeat the cycle four more times for a total of five breaths.
You should always inhale quietly through your nose and exhale audibly through your mouth. Exhalation should take twice as long as inhalation. This exercise is a natural tranquilizer for the nervous system. Do it at least twice a day, but you can do it as often as you like.