Bodywork Blog Episode XVII: Why Breathing Works

Stressed? Take a deep breath. Tired? Overworked? Frustrated? Breathe…

Breath is one the most amazing self therapy techniques. It’s actually the most useful method for stretching: as you breathe in you are relaxing all of the muscles of your rib cage, neck and some into your abdomen and as you breathe out you are contracting them.

Actually relaxing is often a very hard thing for us to do because we have to be doing the relaxing. When we relax there’s this need to stay relaxed and we end up holding our position in a relaxed state. 5 to 20 minutes later we’ll notice that we are getting more and more tense, even though we are “relaxed”!

That’s part of the reason why breath, especially in massage therapy as well as stretching and exercise, is very important. It’s not just there to keep you from passing out, your body also needs to stay in motion.

And when something is intense, whether you want more of it or to get away from it, contraction of the lungs and rib cage is an automatic reflex. This is cured by…breathing. 🙂

So, take a deep breath in and then let it out. Take your time while you do the same for a couple of cycles. See how your mind and body reacts!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone and remember, I’m pulling for you; we’re all in this together. 🙂 ~Cori

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