A client drew my attention to “The breath” last night so, I thought breath should be the subject of my blog today.
Excerpt on breathing from my soon to be published book- “Pilates and its Power: An Introduction by qpilates”:
“The breath is the crucial link between the mind and the body. It pulls our drifting mind back into our bodies and back to the job at hand.
It’s the foundation of our being, and the rhythm of our breathing is with us from birth to death. In Pilates the breath is incorporated into each movement in order to maintain our focus on what we’re doing, to improve the flow of oxygen through our tissues, and to increase the capacity of our lungs.”
- During “normal” breathing (breathing without thinking),
air passes through the respiratory system to lungs exchanging CO2 for O2 and vice versa. The muscles, bones, organs and systems involved in breathing include the LUNGS, the RIBCAGE, the DIAPHRAGM (a “parachute” shaped muscle forming a floor of the cavity that houses your lungs), and, the INTERCOSTAL muscles (those ones which live between your ribs).
When we breathe in normally, the diaphragm contracts, flattens down and the intercostals move the ribcage out (when we breathe out the opposite happens -diaphragm back up and ribcage back in).
- During any exercise (or blowing a trumpet).
the breathing rate increases and everything about this process is GREATER (e.g., The force of the contraction of the entire “system” and the number of muscles recruited.
- During Pilates breathing there are a number of differences:
- breathing is conscious vs unconscious
- the powerhouse (core) contraction of abdominal muscles is maintained throughout
- FULL breathing is encouraged (expanding the ribcage not only out to the sides BUT also into your back)
- you breathe in through the nose and out through the mouth
- you breathe into ribcage rather than into the abdominal cavity
The way we breathe in pilates is VERY important (even though its difficult at first) as it:
- Increases your normal gaseous exchange (oxygen levels in the blood) and
- helps you work those deep abdominal muscles as you’re focusing the breathing into the rib cage
Do you breathe deeply? What techniques do you use? Would you like to learn how to “Breathe with Both lungs”? Then Contact me at qpilates