By Soul Essence New Eltham
You can use many breathing techniques to help your lung capacity and help recover from the effects of Long Covid and other illnesses. Some are easy to learn, and some take more practice.
Deep breathing can help the following: –
- getting oxygen deep into the lungs, which helps you clear out mucus and other fluids.
- strengthening the diaphragm, a major respiratory muscle located under the lungs.
- increasing lung capacity by bringing much-needed oxygen into your bloodstream.
- helping you feel calmer, which may be beneficial for coping with long-term illness and recovery.
We are often not aware we are shallow breathing. Especially when we are concentrating at work, typing at our computer, playing computer games, and even eating our meals. Shallow breathing can increase your chances of anxiety and panic attacks, dry mouth and fatigue, aggravate existing respiratory conditions, and often leads to cardiovascular issues. Considering all this, we can see why taking part in breathing exercises is important.
Meditation is often done by putting your focus on your breathing, particularly when practising Yoga. However, we can do meditation and breathing exercises without necessarily doing Yoga. Breathing exercises may help improve the symptoms of long covid, ongoing stress and anxiety caused by lockdowns and covid symptoms.
Soul Essence runs meditations which help improve your breathing and will also work with you on a one-to-one basis to improve your breathing technique.
Here are a couple of breathing exercises you can try at home.
Diaphragmatic Breathing (also known as belly breathing when doing Qigong)
You can do this standing, sitting, or lying down
- Relax your face, neck, jaw and shoulder muscles through meditation or a relaxation technique.
- Rest the tip of your tongue on the roof of your mouth or behind your top front teeth.
- Check your back is straight; support if necessary
- Close your eyes if sitting or lying down; if standing, bring your eyes to a soft gaze.
- Breathe at your normal pace for a few minutes
- Place one hand on your chest and one on your lower abdomen
- Breathe deeply in through your nose, feeling your chest and ribs expand. You should feel your belly expand against your hand
- Breathe out, feeling your stomach contract inwards
- Breathe slowly and deeply this way for 5 to ten minutes
Humming OM when exhaling
- Sit upright with your back straight. Use support if necessary
- Place your tongue on the roof of your mouth
- Keep your mouth/lips closed
- Breathe in deeply through your nose, keeping your lips closed.
- Keep your shoulders relaxed.
- Once lungs are full, exhale humming OM. Make sure you keep your lips closed.
- Repeat for several breaths.
If you find these helpful or want to know more about the breathing exercises and meditation I offer, please contact me.