Breathing With The Diaphragm the Conscious Breathing Muscle
The diaphragmatic breathing is a well known and valuable tool for all sports, for those who studied singing, for those who use so powerful voice as the singers and stage actors, and of course for those who do yoga . But breathe properly is critical to all of us: to become aware of your breath, in simple words “breathe well”, he brings immense benefits to health and well-being. ( What are the benefits of proper breathing? )
Breathing with the diaphragm is the key to proper breathing. But what is the diaphragm, what it does for our breathing and why we should learn to breathe better?
Pranayama and the importance of good breathing
In yoga there is a very important component that is customarily called Pranayama : This Sanskrit word indicates the sophisticated technique of controlling and channeling the prana through the breath that the ancient sages or rishis , have developed thousands of years ago.
For a yogi and yogini, whether it is already an expert or learning, your breath is a cornerstone on which to bring attention and care in practice. And how could it be otherwise, since if we are alive we owe it basically right in this magical act of breathing?
Doing yoga will soon become aware of the quality of our spontaneous breathing and how we can change it with repeated acts of consciousness. Even just starting to take the time to recognize it, entering in the experience of yoga, we come quickly to experience that we can change and improve the way we breathe and make our slower spontaneous breathing, long and deep. Doing yoga, we learn that in pranayama we speak of the three stages of conscious mechanical breath and that’s when we can produce this quality, it brings with it a process of healing and evolution on all levels: physical, mental, emotional, energetic and spiritual .
One wonders why not start early childhood to teach how to breathe properly at all.
The long breath, aware deep , starring a very important muscle involved in breathing: the diaphragm .
What is the diaphragm, the muscle conscious breathing
The diaphragm separates the thoracic cavity from the abdominal ; basic is an involuntary muscle, innervated only by a nerve, phrenic, but it is intimately connected to other muscles involved in breathing that instead can be moved in a voluntary manner. It’s just following the iterations with these muscles that also the diaphragm can be activated voluntarily , and that is what makes possible the deep breathing and beneficial change that yogis have much sought after – and that is affordable for everyone!
Let’s see what it means. The breath has a continuous flow, which is manifested in two phases:
inspiration , which has the function to enter the air in the lungs
exhalation , that instead pushes out
The lungs have no muscles, but a sort of sponge that in order to “fill” air they need the help of a number of muscles. Especially the inspiratory phase needs the activation of various muscles, including the diaphragm; nell’espiro it has a minor involvement of the muscles and the diaphragm simply returns back and resumes its starting position.
The diaphragm has a dome shape that changes nell’inspiro: as the plunger of a syringe that I have to shoot you down if you want to suck in the liquid, the diaphragm descends down to cause a change in pressure inside the lungs that makes enter the air; dell inspire at the end of the diaphragm returns reflected back in its original position, the exhalation phase and the air is activated is pushed out of the lungs, just as the syringe that push up to expel the liquid out.
Breathing in, the diaphragm descends and compresses the organs that are contained in the abdominal cavity: stomach liver, intestines, genitals … Therefore it is said that if there is an ongoing diaphragmatic movement , you should feel the belly “come up”: this pressure it is very beneficial, because in addition to air to fill well the lungs and ossigenarci well, massaging all organs , favoring, for example, a better bowel movement, and also beneficially massaging the heart that is attached below the diaphragm. When I breathe out, however, the diaphragm back up and belly down, because the compressed organs find themselves lost space.
What happens when “do not breathe well”?
The diaphragmatic breathing should also be based in our spontaneous breathing. In reality, what most often happens when we breathe unconsciously, is that the aperture is blocked and breathing is concentrated all in the chest, or even in the upper part of the chest, collarbone area. When the quality of our breathing is so shallow, often accompanied by a fast and labored pace, hardly able to oxygenate in abundance all cells, the mind will be panting like breathing, and we will live in a state of openness to disease and stress . Then reactivate the movement of the diaphragm with a correct abdominal breathing is crucial, is the first step necessary to change our spontaneous breathing, make it more long, deep and slow.
The basic steps to breathe consciously
What can I do to make deeper, sustained and informed my breathing, even the automatic all day?
Recognize that I’m breathing : even this simple act can make a difference on the quality of my breath.
Reactivate voluntarily the diaphragm , with a breath focused on the abdomen and on the movement of the diaphragm produces.
Experiment with the three phases of the breath from the abdomen, the chest, from the clavicle. Putting myself in listening to my breath, I can grasp the three separate phases.
Breathing consciously : the three phases are fused together, with an actual movement of the diaphragm.