Do you suffer from frequent headaches in the temple area? Do you have a hard time catching your breathe in normal situations? Do you feel anxious or more stressed than you should?Do you also sit hunched over a computer or drive all day? If you answered yes to any of those questions chances are your problem is breathing and posture related.
Poor posture, sitting hunched over all day causes the muscles in the upper back to become over-stretched which in and of itself can cause headaches and lots of trigger points. However the upper chest get restricted and the chest muscles get short and stiff. The upper back rounding and caved chest makes it very difficult to get air into the lungs and impossible to fill the chest with air. Since your body doesn’t like it when you don’t breathe it will use any muscles it can to get air in. In this case its the muscles in the neck which are already cranky from your poor posture!
If the front of your neck is always tight and turned on you’ll never be able to take a true diaphragmatic breath – that is using your diaphragm to inhale and exhale as opposed to other muscle groups.
Failure to inhale properly and fill up the chest can also lead to anxiety and increased stress. It can also alter blood pH.
Poor posture and breathing in the gym couple with poor exercise selection cna make things even worse! Doing lots of bench pressing or other upper body pushing movements make your chest muscles even tighter further restricting your breathing. You have to work on opening the chest and reducing the tension in the upper and mid back. Failure to maintain a neutral spine and poor breathing lead to increased risk of injury.
Do you breathe from your “gills”?
Lie on your back with your left knee bent and left foot flat on the floor. Place your left hand on the lower ribs on the left side. Place your right arm on the floor above you with your elbow straight. Breathe. Feel what is moving when you inhale and exhale. Does you belly move? Does your chest inflate? Is the only thing working your neck muscles? If you are breathing into your belly, that’s good. Now try to breathe into the chest as well. If you are only breathing into the chest try to breathe down into your belly too.
One you can chest & belly breathe start trying to breathe into your side and back.
To find out more come to our “Breathe Like a Baby” workshop this Saturday June 8th from 10:15a-11:45a, it’s open to everyone. Current active members -$15, all others $30. All workshop fees will go to our Revolution for a Cause Fundraiser – Cystic Fibrosis.[high_impact_btn_sign_up_now link=”https://ironbody.zenplanner.com/zenplanner/portal/event.cfm?eventId=7CA65FA2-F27E-48B2-B176-1CCDBD97B869″ + target=”_blank”] [/high_impact_btn_sign_up_now]