Breathing is critical for great health.
tpsdave / Pixabay – Breathing is critical for great health.

People who know how to breathe are never sick a day in their lives.  It is because the more oxygen you get into your bloodstream, the less likely bacteria, viruses, fungi, etc. can survive to impact your health.  Most of us don’t know how to breathe properly.  We go through the motions of inhaling and exhaling.  However, we slump over and minimize the amount of air that can be taken into our lower diaphragm.

Breathing correctly is important for more than just our daily needs of oxygen.  We need it to relax properly to reduce/eliminate tension (think stress management).  We need to breath correctly to improve our skills in singing or playing an instrument (trombone, cornet, saxophone, etc.).  We need to breath better than our peers to excel in sports, especially those involving endurance.

Better breathing improves mood, energy levels, posture, blood circulation, lung function, and overall health.  It can lower blood pressure and heart rate, promote clearer thinking, support detoxification and increase metabolism.

Sick people need to learn to breath better to combat chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma and other respiratory problems.  Stress is the genesis of 80+% of doctors’ visits.  Learning to breathe properly reduces stress and reduces the number/risk of diseases associated with stress (headaches, anxiety, depression, heart disease, and premature aging).

Go to YouTube and type in ‘breathing exercises’ and find several that you can do easily.  I search under the term, ‘pranayama’.  It is a method of controlling breath.  There are many exercises associated with pranayama.  I find that watching the videos and following along makes it much easier to do.

There is a simple exercise to assess how good a breather you are.  Take one deep breath and hold it.  Begin counting out loud in a whisper as fast as you can from zero.  At the end of that one breath note the number you stopped on before you had to take another breath.  Good breathers typically exceed 150.  The best test result was 304.  Most people have problems exceeding the 60-80 range.

Whether you can routinely reach 60 or 160, you should add daily breathing exercises to your health regimen.

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