Working your Diaphragm
Updated: Oct 8, 2019
by George Thomas
How to start a diaphragmatic breathing session:
1) To begin a session lay down supporting the head and knees with a pillow.
2) Place one hand on upper abdomen and the other above toward the side of your chest.
3) Pay attention to the way you are breathing prior to starting.
4) Then, breathe in through your nose for a 5 to 10 count. (notice your belly rise and your lower ribs expand as you complete a full cycle).
5) Focus on your hands and the movement of the belly and lower rib expansion.
6) The finish, or exhale, will feel your stomach slowly move inward pushing the air out moving the diaphragm up.
7) These sessions should last for 10-15 minutes while lying down. Once this exercise has been mastered lying down you can try it in a sitting position, then standing.
Once you have mastered the three positions above you can start to integrate this type of breathing into mindful daily activity for maximum health benefits.
The purpose of this exercise is to allow the lungs to rest and utilize muscles that have not been involved in breathing to get back in shape.
There are evidence-based studies that show benefits for:
1) Feel good, by the release of serotonin-anabolic hormones improving mood
and reducing stress.
2) Increased Concentration by providing more oxygen to the brain and blood flow
to the prefrontal cortex to allow efficiency in deep thought process.
3) Lowers Blood Pressure by doubling the amount of oxygen in the blood
4) Aids in weight loss by decreasing cortisol production with reduction in stress
5) Deep breathing can improve sleep quality by improved muscular function and
6) Improves lungs capacity and promotes digestion through muscular movement.
7) Strengthens the pelvic floor muscle improving bladder and sexual organ function.
8) Sexual performance through stronger musculature and joint strength in the pelvis.
9) Improves the elimination process of the bladder and bowel to effectively remove
toxins and waste.
Posture and core strength improves since the diaphragm is attached at the back of the neck to the pelvic floor affecting everything in between. Try it for a month and see what happens.