Breathing shouldn’t be a hard thing to do. Let’s think about training it.

There is muscle tissue, and even deeper stuff, that lengthens and contracts. If you want to increase your capacity or the health of that stuff, you will need to move it and breathing is a great way to move some of that “core” stuff and suits well as a training tool. Just like other tissue in the body, it responds to progressive doses of stress or force. It helps if you value what you’re doing and why you’re doing it.

Inhales for ribs.

Stuck ribs aren’t too friendly to feeling good. Sure, you could bend and twist around, but your lungs are right there next to the ribs, on the inside. You can fill those tissue bags with air. When you inhale, those bags fill and push out into your rib cage. This is where you can find that movement between the ribs. It helps drive a good stretch of that stuff between. Patiently draw the air in through your nose, slowly fill the lungs until they have no more space available, big ballooning breath. Hold for a few seconds. Feel the expansion.

Exhales for abs. 

Trust me; they do exist. It’s a superficial layer of your core stuff you can relate to. Everyone has abs, wants more abs, or wants to feel abs, for whatever reason. Exhaling fully is one of the easiest ways to connect with them. Blow all the air out of your body, no, really blow all of it out. Think of squeezing every last bit of toothpaste out of the tube; in this situation, your lungs are the tube. Empty them, and you should feel your ribs drop down and in; then, those abs will latch on with some contraction. Make sure you’re empty. Hold the air out for a few seconds. Feel the abs.

Inhale and exhale for stress control.

Respiration is the main way our body responds to stress. It reacts to real changes in your environment and even to perceived changes. The cool thing about this system is at our will, we can override our response by actively engaging with our breathing. We then consciously direct our physiology to what we want to feel. Like many other things, this is a learned skill. But one that provides awareness and command over our behaviour. Powerful stuff that breathing.

There’s a rabbit hole of breathing options. I help simplify the introduction and navigate the options.

- Coach Emile


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