Diaphragmatic Breathing For Anxiety And Other Problems:
A regular and committed practice of Yoga strengthens multiple systems of the body, circulatory, digestive, respiratory and others. Abdominal breathing is one such yoga. Yoga uses its understanding of the connection between the body and the mind to harness and discipline the mind.
Historical texts like the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and references in the sacred Hindu Upanishads and Vedas define yoga as a way to quieten the mind. Traditional yogic practices follow an eight-limbed path ( astanga) which does not stop with laying down rules about physical movements such as posture ( asana) and breath control ( pranayama), but also emphasises the cultivation of attitudes such as non-violence ( ahimsa), commitment to truth ( satya) and contentment ( santosha).
Abdominal Breathing Benefits:
- Reduces stress. It helps you relax, lowering the harmful effects of the stress hormone cortisol on your body.
- Lowers your heart rate. It helps lower your blood pressure.
- Improves your core muscle stability.
- It improves your body’s ability to tolerate intense exercise.
- Lowers your chances of injuring or wearing out your muscles.
- Slows your rate of breathing so that
One of the biggest benefits of diaphragmatic breathing is reducing stress.
As any athlete, musician or hard-working student would tell you, discipline sharpens focus and allows you to be present more in the moment. From a yogic perspective, this helps in the achievement of the ultimate goal, which is self-realisation. For psychologists’ point of view, this will pave the way for self-actualisation.
Though yogic practices can vary, any journey of yoga can begin with only one step: connecting with your breath.
Abdominal Breathing Steps:
Here is a simple yet powerful way to practice abdominal breathing:
- Lie down on a mat with your eyes closed and body relaxed.
- Just observe how the body moves as it breathes.
- Place your left hand on your chest and your right hand on your navel.
- Now gently expand the abdomen as you inhale and contract it by drawing the navel in as you exhale. Pretend that it is a balloon that you are filling and emptying of your breath.
- Try not to expand the chest, shoulder or rib cage.
Do this for a few minutes at a time and repeat it during the day.