Research shows as much as 20% reduction can happen in the oxygen levels in our body due to poor breathing habits and of course, our aging process. While we can’t do much about the aging process, we can certainly incorporate better breathing techniques to breathe right and age better..
Chest Vs. Belly Breathing
Many argue chest breathing is the correct technique to breathe right. You fill your chest first by tucking in your belly while inhaling, and pushing your belly out while exhaling. This “puffed chest” tactic is what can be measured as the greatest capacity of your lungs.
On the other hand, belly breathing is about filling your belly while inhaling such that your belly puffs up, and then you pulling in your belly to exhale as slowly as possible.
For some, it’s the belly breathing that is more accurate and far more beneficial to a person because unlike chest breathing, belly breathing fills all parts of your lungs, not just the middle and upper parts of your lungs. However, it is said that a combination of chest and belly breathing is far better than either one exclusively. So try this at home in a quiet corner with your eyes closed:
- Inhale while you relax your belly muscles. Feel the air fill your belly.
- Keep on inhaling while you feel your chest puff up, and your rib cage expand.
- Hold for a moment.
- Exhale as slowly as you can while relaxing your chest and rib cage.
- Pull your belly in to push out the remaining air.
- Concentrate on your breathing and continue for at least 5 minutes.
You can use these steps to calm your mind too. Just make a humming sound while exhaling. You can also hum “Om” while exhaling to relax.
This is a great breathing technique, as well as a simple relaxation tactic. Try it as often as possible to live a healthy life.
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