Practicing regular, mindful breathing can be relaxing, energizing and even aid in alleviating stress-related health problems, from digestive orders to panic. Since breathing is something we can regulate and control you’re probably wondering; what is the purpose of breathing exercises? Well, the truth is that breathing exercises are a useful tool for a relaxed and clear state of mind.
When performed correctly, breathing exercises are not only essential for living longer but also for having a good mood and keeping your performance at its best. Before we can look at the different breathing exercises you can perform, let’s get some insight on the purpose of breathing exercises.
Breathing exercises are not only essential for living longer but also for having a good mood and keeping your performance at its best
What is the Purpose of Breathing Exercises?
Most of us often take our breath for granted. It is always there after all and does not seem like something we should have to concentrate on. However, breath is powerful. Learning to harness your own breathing can aid in controlling your states of mind and body. It is a secret weapon. So what is the purpose of breathing exercises?
Detoxification and Release of Toxins
The body is naturally designed to release up to 70% of its toxins through breathing. As a result, if you’re not breathing properly, it means that you’re not properly ridding your body of its toxins. This means that other body systems will be overworked which could result in illness.
Breathing exercises increase the volume of oxygen intake in your body which results in better nourishment of the nervous system.
When you perform breathing exercises, you get rid of carbon dioxide – a natural waste product of the body’s metabolism that has been passed from the bloodstream into the lungs.
Breathing Exercises Release Tension
Just think of how your body feels when you are stressed, angry, scared or tense. In such instances, your body constricts, the muscles become tight. And your breathing becomes shallow and as a result, you’re not getting sufficient oxygen into your body.
Breathing exercises increase the volume of oxygen intake in your body which results in better nourishment of the nervous system. A well-nourished nervous system causes the nerves to calm down and the muscles follow naturally.
Besides releasing body tension, deep breathing exercises can minimize the occurrence of muscle stiffness and boost your sense of overall well-being.
- You may need to read : how are breathing and cellular respiration similar?
Relieve Body Pain
Although it is difficult to understand the connection of breathing exercises to how you feel, think and experience life, the truth is that these exercises are a natural painkiller. Breathing exercises trigger the release of endorphins – natural, feel-good painkillers- created by the body.
Breathing exercises trigger the release of endorphins – natural, feel-good painkillers- created by the body.
In fact, studies have revealed that when we feel pain, the most instant unconscious reaction is to hold our breath. Breathing deeply and breathing into the pain helps to release it.
Breathing Exercises Improve Body Posture
In most cases, poor body posture is directly linked with incorrect breathing techniques. Try breathing exercises and you’ll be surprised to discover how your body naturally straightens up as you breathe deeply. Moreover, filling up your lungs encourages you to straighten your spine for a better posture.
Types of Breathing Exercises You Can Perform
Optimal breathing accords you more vitality and a better quality of life. When you perform breathing exercises on a daily basis, you will reap benefits such as reduction in blood pressure and stress, better blood flow, and healthy sleep among others.
And since quality breathing strengthens the mind, here are the three most common breathing exercises you want to try.
Power Breathing Exercises
Power breathing exercises are meant to increase the strength of your entire body. Power breathing exercises should be performed with strength and power and should be done first thing in the morning when you wake up.
On the other hand, these exercises can also be done at the completion of an intense workout session, such as cardio training since they help bring you back to normal breathing very quickly.
- When you’re totally exhausted or completely out of breath from intense workout, that’s the perfect moment for power breathing exercises. What power breathing does it that it increases your body’s ability to absorb large volumes of oxygen thus allowing oxygen to be forced into the bloodstream in large quantities.
- When performing these exercises, you must exert physical strength by tightening the body muscles which helps strengthen your lungs and prepare you for an intense physical fitness session.
Deep Breathing Exercises
- When performing deep breathing exercises, your mind must be relaxed and in a very calm state. In addition, such exercises may also be performed with slow body movements coordinated with the breathing.
Relaxed Breathing Exercises
Relaxed breathing exercises are common in traditional meditation, relaxation, Chi Gong and yoga.
- With these exercises, you’re supposed to slow down your breathing to at most two breaths per minute.
- Such breathing exercises are usually very long, very soft and slow therefore aid in relaxing your mind and the entire body at large. Better yet, relaxed breathing exercises are excellent for tension and stress release.
While breathing exercises have a ton of benefits, it is important to be careful if you’re performing them for the first time since you may feel weak or dizzy. If that happens, take a breather for a few minutes until you feel better.
Additionally, in order to breathe properly, you must breathe deeply into your abdomen and not just your chest. And just to reiterate what we mentioned earlier, the purpose of breathing exercises is to:
- Release body toxins
- Release tension
- Relieve body pain
- Improve your posture
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