Hardly anyone thinks about it in everyday life and yet it is vital for survival: breathing. Naturally the lungs absorb oxygen and expel the used air. Conscious breathing and various breathing techniques can positively affect the body and mind, and even aid healing in healing. We introduce you to the most effective exercises.
Proper breathing – good health
Many people do not know how they affect their breathing – or that they can do it at all. Only a small part of the actual breathing volume is used in everyday life. That’s more than 6 liters for a healthy person. Stress, in particular, has a negative impact on breathing, which makes it shallow. So less oxygen can get into the blood.Tip: more joie de vivre and self-realization with * free * guide
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Healthy breathing is important to stay physically and mentally healthy. If breathing is short and shallow, it can have negative consequences for the body. These include impaired concentration, high blood pressure, tension and weakness. An increased supply of oxygen enables the cells to work better. So the blood pressure is lowered again and the metabolism stimulated. Good breathing can prevent stress-related illnesses, relax and center the mind in the body.
Already more than 3,000 years ago, the teachings of ancient India dealt with various breathing techniques. An important component of the yoga practice are the so-called pranayama, the breathing exercises. The old masters were aware of the importance of breathing. The state of mind can also be influenced by the breath. So a respiratory therapy is also recommended for some mental health problems.
For whom breathing exercises are suitable
In addition to people who are exposed to mental stress, breathing exercises are also suitable for people with other diseases. Of course, anyone can benefit from the relaxing effects of breathing exercises, but especially patients with respiratory disorders benefit from such exercises and can increase their quality of life through them. Breathing exercises can prevent a negative course of the disease and improve the condition of the patient.
In chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), breathing exercises are often used to exclude respiratory infections. Breathing exercises can also help with asthma, pulmonary fibrosis and paralyzes.When performing the breathing exercises, you should listen to your body. If you feel dizzy and unwell, you should take a break. A wrong execution can lead to hyperventilation and convulsions. If this is the case, seek medical attention immediately. Even if you are in pain, you should contact a doctor.
The four phases of breathing
Basically, you can divide a breathing exercise into four phases. The exercise starts with inhalation. The length of inspiration and exhalation can vary from exercise to exercise. After inhaling, hold your breath for a moment. This state is called breath fullness, as the air is held in the lungs. Then you exhale for a few seconds. Now you make a little break again. This condition is called Atemleer because you have already exhaled the used air.
This is how the breathing exercise succeeds
Breathing exercises are extremely effective and still easy to implement. There are no special aids or a special sports facility necessary. Regular exercise can be proven to improve your breathing and provide a relaxed breath. But before you start, you should pay attention to a few things:Tip: audiobook subscription Audible for free
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- Just like yoga, you should not consume food for a while before your workout. With an empty stomach your breath flows more easily and you are less sluggish. It is recommended to stop eating at least one to three hours before training to get the best effect. You should, however, be careful to drink enough. If you integrate breathing exercises into your morning routine, you can check off your workout before breakfast and start the day relaxed.
- Before you start, you should make sure that you feel comfortable in your clothes and that you are sitting comfortably. Too tight clothing can affect your breathing. You should be able to move freely. Special sports clothing is not necessary for your purposes. A leggings or stretchy sweatpants is sufficient. A sweater or t-shirt that gives you enough freedom of movement is also suitable. Comfortable clothing can significantly contribute to your relaxation.
- A relaxed atmosphere is also essential for an intense workout. If you are under time pressure or uncomfortable, this may interfere with the performance of your breathing exercise because you are under stress. Make sure that you are undisturbed and consciously take a few minutes to complete the exercise.
- Last but not least, it is important that you adopt a comfortable posture in which you can stay for a few minutes. Some breathing exercises are performed while sitting, others while lying down or even standing up. You can use a pillow or blanket as a support if you are prone to pain. A classical position for meditation or a breathing exercise is the lotus position. You sit cross-legged on the floor. Try out what works best for you.
The best breathing exercises in everyday life
Breathing exercises can be easily integrated into everyday life and are the ideal helper for inner tension and stressful situations such as exams. Even natural and simple behaviors such as a sigh can lighten your lungs and relieve stress.
Especially at the beginning it is advisable to start with the yoga breathing . You can apply them everywhere. Whether during a lunch break in the office or during a train ride, the yoga breathing is so straightforward that you can do it almost anywhere. However, you should keep in mind that you should be able to relax while doing so. In yoga breathing, you train your inhalation and exhalation and try to extend it over time. You consciously breathe into your stomach and into your chest. Try to exhale twice as long as you inhale. If you can not do that at first, you can try to increase yourself slowly. Other breathing techniques from yoga practice can be found in this article.
In general, a distinction is made between abdominal and thoracic respiration . When doing yoga breathing, use both at the same time. However, if you breathe only in the chest, especially your chest expands. The ribs are raised and the volume increased. So much air can be sucked into the lungs.
The abdominal or diaphragmatic breathing produces a similar effect. The center of attention is the diaphragm, which separates the abdominal and thoracic cavities and is considered the most important respiratory muscle. When breathing, he contracts and moves deeper into the abdominal cavity. This creates a slight suction through which the lungs can inflate.
Sit or lie down on the floor. The legs are about hip-width apart and bent. Put one hand on the ribcage; the other is on his stomach. Now you tighten your abdominal muscles and inhale slowly. Make sure your lips are on top of each other. This is called a lip brake . Exhaling creates a small opening between the lips, through which you release the air slowly. Try counting to four before you stop exhaling. Then you breathe again until you have counted to two. Feel aware of how your abdominal muscles relax. Your chest should hardly move in contrast.
Soothing breathing exercise
Sit upright and comfortably on a chair. Your legs should be shoulder-width apart and at a 90-degree angle. Now lay your elbows on your knees and lean forward with your back straight forward. Your body weight is derived through the elbows. Inhale consciously and slowly and then with the lip brake.
Relaxing breathing exercise
In this exercise, you sit on an upturned chair and place your arms on the backrest. Now you put your forehead on the arm. Inhale and hold the air for a moment in your body. With the lip brake you exhale. Repeat this for a few breaths before you straighten up again.
Seated breathing exercise
You do this breathing exercise upright in a chair. You put your legs shoulder width and at a 90-degree angle. Then you lean your back against the back of the chair. If your chair has armrests, put your arms on them. Otherwise, you put her in the lap. This time, consciously inhale through the nose and through the lip brake again.
Standing breathing exercise
Stand upright. Your feet are hip-width apart. The knees are slightly bent and loose. Put your hands together just below the belly button so that the palms face up. Inhale and move your hands up the body. In front of the chest you turn your palms to the floor, exhale and move your hands along the body towards the belly button. Repeat this process several times in succession.
Breathing exercise in the office
Sit upright and press your upper body against the back of the chair. Inhale and bring your arms up the side. As you lower your arms, exhale slowly and evenly. Put your arms on your stomach and wait until you feel the inspiration to breathe again. Repeat the exercise.
Breathing exercises for voice training
Not only for the health and relaxation are breathing exercises, also for the voice training they are essential. Singers and actors warm up their voices and bodies with special breathing exercises before performing so that they do not have their voices on stage. We introduce two effective exercises.
Stand upright and loose. Distribute the weight evenly on both legs, which are approximately shoulder width apart. Tighten your buttocks and press your knees without applying force. Your shoulders pull back, which widens your rib cage. Breathe in with short but powerful sniffing trains. This happens exclusively through the nose. Each time you take in a little more air, so that your belly expands. After taking a few sniffing moves, take a short break and then exhale through the slightly open mouth.
Inhale through the nose and hold the breath with the help of your muscles for a few seconds in the body. A small part of the air you can now slowly escape through the lip brake. The part left in the lungs is again held in the body for a few seconds, before you release a small part again. Do this until the entire breath leaves your lungs.