From the moment we enter the world we draw our first breath and continue until our final days. Most people would never give it another thought and yet it isn’t until we start to train for Freediving that we really learn how to properly breath.
There are those of you out there that may have some experiences with breathing techniques whether it be from yoga, meditation or other activities but for the majority of the population they take very little to time consider their breathing cycle.
During the Freediver program, students are introduced to the concept of diaphragmatic breathing, where we draw deeply into our belly’s using the strong mediastinal muscle of the diaphragm. Normally we breathe from the top of our chests, rarely filling our lungs to their full potential, but by learning to breathe more efficiently, deeply and fuller we are able to relax, lower our heart rate and clear our minds of stress.
In addition to its relaxation benefits, a few other ways that implementing the ‘breathe-up’ technique will improve overall health include:
Diaphragmatic breathing has been shown to reduce stress hormones adrenaline and cortisol. In addition, practicing the ‘breathe-up’ first thing in the morning can serve as a kind of meditative practice, helping you to relax, to stay calm, and to improve focus by increasing blood flow to the prefrontal cortex of the brain.
Rids lungs of residual toxic air and makes oxygenation more efficient
For the most part, a healthy human is only two deep breaths away from 100 percent blood oxygen saturation, so using the ‘breathe-up’ has more to do with relaxing than actual oxygen saturation. However, relaxation does promote oxygen storage in the body, and belly breathing pulls air into the voluminous bottom of the lungs. The breathing cycle used in the ‘breathe-up’ also helps rid the body of toxic air that has built up in the lungs throughout the day, or after exercising.
Balances out the nervous system
Breathing exercises in general help to balance out the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. By slowing down breathing, the parasympathetic nervous system is activated, resulting in a variety of health benefits including lowered heart rate, lowered blood pressure, increased energy, improved mood, reduced anxiety, improved sleep and better digestion.
As you can see, giving yourself some time during the day to focus on your breathing, relax your mind and lower your heart rate can have significant health benefits. If this is something that anyone can do, anywhere and at anytime.
Freediving is about inward power, discipline and control. If you’ve always wanted to enter the underwater world quietly, on your own terms, staying as long as your breath allows, then freediving is for you. Learning to freedive is a simple process so you should book your freediving course today.