How is your breathing?

By: Meredith Butulis

Are you breathing well right now? If you are reading this, you are probably breathing, but have you ever considered HOW you are breathing?

Breathing is a topic of huge research consideration in sports performance, working with medical conditions such as asthma, and relieving stress. It is also a huge consideration in mind-body activities such as Yoga, Pilates, and Martial Arts. In the fields of fitness and rehabilitation, there are experts that show us research that there is only one ‘right’ way to breathe; unfortunately, many of these experts don’t agree with each other.

That leads us to ask, how am I supposed to breathe? Try each of the experiments below for one minute at a time. For each type of breathing you try, follow up by asking yourself how you feel afterwards. If you find something that decreases stress, increases mental clarity, improves your sport, or has any other positive effect, share it with us by leaving a reply.

Experiment 1:
Continue breathing the way you are right now. While you do this, allow your
shoulder blades to slide down toward your back pockets. Nod your chin slightly
down. Keep breathing in this position.

Experiment 2:
Take a minute to slump at your desk, or even move into a yoga child’s pose on the
floor. When you inhale, focus on trying to fill the backside of your lungs with

Experiment 3:
Find an empty balloon. Lie on your back with your feet elevated on a chair.
Blow up the balloon.

Experiment 4:
Count to 10 in your head while you breathe in through your nose. Count to 10 in
your head while your breathe out through your mouth. Repeat this 3-5 times.

Which experiment did you like? Which technique would you use everyday? Why? Take a minute to share your findings with your peers by posting your thoughts!

Meredith Butulis is a professional sponge that enjoys the lifelong process of learning, sharing, and mentoring others in their professional growth. She holds a doctorate in Physical Therapy with an emphasis in Education from Northeastern University, a Masters in Physical Therapy from Boston University, and a Bachelors in Health Studies from Boston University. Meredith enjoys walking the health fitness talk with an active lifestyle including national level fitness competitions, Pilates, boxing, dancing, circus arts, and being a gym rat.