TAKE A BREATH (PART 1) WITH OCTAVIA CALTHORPE
“The single most effective relaxation technique I know is conscious regulation of breath.”
- Dr. A Weil
The essentials of breathwork are based around becoming aware of your breath, re-learning how to breathe optimally and then changing it or adapting it in a way that creates a desired state for your body and mind.
As a basic instruction, diaphragmatic breathing is best and what we want to aim to be achieving when we breathe. The simplest way to see if you are breathing with your diaphragm is to place your hands on your stomach, just below your ribs. As you inhale, if you can feel your stomach rising and expanding then you will be engaging your diaphragm. I have outlined a brief and simple exercise below for further details on how to do this.
Once we have spent some time bringing awareness to our breath and making sure we are using our diaphragm. We can then start to learn how to use the breath to improve mental, physical, and spiritual well-being as well as:
- Increase energy
- Increase focus
- Release anxiety and relieve depression
- Support our immune system and physical health
- Induce a sense of calm
- Lie on the floor on your back, legs comfortable and arms relaxed along your body
- Feel and connect with the ground beneath you
- Place both hands on your lower abdomen
- Focus on the inhale and exhale - notice the rise of inhale and the fall of the exhale (breath in through the nose belly rises, exhale through the nose belly falls)
- Pause between each breath
- If you cant feel the breath in your belly try bending your knees (feet on the ground this helps bring the breath down)
- Imagine as you inhale there is a balloon inside expanding with each inhale
- If the belly is full this is a deep diaphragmatic breath
- If it is difficult to get the breath in the belly, then try lying on your stomach and placing your legs comfortably, toes pointing outwards
- Fold your arms in front of you and support your forehead - so your chest isn't touching the floor.
- As you inhale feel your belly pressing against the floor and imagine the balloon in your belly expanding with everything breath
- As you exhale feel the belly relaxing
- Take a few breaths here
I am doing online donation based, one on one and group sessions throughout this time, so please get in contact if you would like to learn more, or do a guided session.