(Continuation) (click here for Part I).
So, we do need to breathe correctly! To breathe correctly is to breathe like a baby, moving the navel area as we breathe in and out. For those who are not practicing Yoga, the importance of correct breathing is completely neglected or even unknown. What is remarkable is that breathing is the most important function of the body. Sloppy, shallow breathing will slowly and literally kill us. But, who cares?
These are some of the reasons we should care.
The 7 Interesting and Important Facts About Breathing
- The lungs cannot draw air inside themselves. Like sponges, the lungs are passive, inert and elastic. They do nothing by themselves!
- The muscles around the lungs move the air in and out of the lungs by a process of contraction and expansion. So the muscles are in charge of breathing!
- The major muscle in charge of inhalation is the diaphragm (click here to see the motion of the diaphragm). The diaphragm is directly below the lungs and it’s in charge of most of the inhalation – about 75%!
- The nose, rather than the mouth, is the correct organ for inhalation. The nose filters, humidifies and warms the air. The nose also produces mucus which traps bacteria. Breathing through the mouth, on the contrary, allows bacteria to come into both throat and lungs. Breathing through the mouth is source of potential diseases!
- The lungs are bigger on the bottom part. So, we can draw more oxygen in when we breathe deeply! Middle or upper chest breathing is less efficient! But, who cares?
- Breathing correctly or deeply moves the diaphragm up and down. The diaphragm motion gently massages the internal organs, keeping them in tip top shape!
- Diaphragmatic motion also promotes a rhythmic massage in the abdominal area. It specifically moves the lymph fluid. It improves lymph fluid and blood circulation. It helps to prevent lymph sluggishness.
Guidelines to Breathe Correctly
For a good start of your Lymphatic Yoga practice, pick up a book relatively thick book (no phone books, please!). Lie down with knees bent. Keep your feet apart and flat on the floor. Now you are ready to start it:
- Place the book on the tummy, at the navel area. Bring the arms by your sides.
- Now, relax your arms, relax your face. Soften your shoulders and relax your trunk on the floor.
- Breathe in through the nose slowly and deeply. Pay attention to the book on your belly. As you breathe in and out mentally observe the motion of the book up and down. The navel is moving the book up and down.
- As you breathe in observe the book rising steadily, as you exhale observe the book going down.
- When you get the book moving smoothly up and down, begin to slow down the breathing. Effortlessly, please. Less is more in Yoga! Keep doing it.
- Now, begin to add a pause – a second – after each inhalation and exhalation. When breathing in mentally notice the book rising. Pause for a second. When breathing out notice the book going down. At the end of the exhalation, pause for a second before the next inhalation.
- Repeat for at least 10 min. Practice it every day for 3 weeks when you wake up or/and before sleeping. You will see the results! Then, keep doing it.
The book on the tummy keeps your mind aware of the motion of the navel. It helps restore the flexibility of the diaphragm. Use this technique until the diaphragmatic breathing becomes easy for you. After that, rather than the book we can use your hand on the navel or just the mind observing the motion of the navel.
When watching TV, in the grocery store, waiting in a line or driving make sure to practice the correct breathing every time you remember it.
Correct breathing is a major factor to prevent sluggishness of the precious lymphatic fluid. Please, keep your lymph moving, no matter what! The Lymphatic System is either your source of health or disease. When flowing smoothly, radiant health results. When sluggish, diseases begin to set in. Correct breathing is a gift to the body. Keep rewarding yourself every day. You deserve it! Breathe deeply and smile!
Stay tuned for my video in how to breathe correctly!
See you soon! Much love to all!