Asthma

breathing out rather than breathing in. One has to try to empty the chest and raise the diaphragm by forced contraction of the abdomen and lower chest. For breathing in, one should concentrate in pushing the air into the abdomen and thus swelling the abdomen. The exhaling should be longer than inhaling in the ratio of 3:2 or better even 2:1.

10.     Fostering Three-Part Deeper Breathing – Inhale deeply through the nose and push out the abdomen; then divide the exhalation through the mouth into three parts: exhale-pause, exhale-pause, exhale pause. Follow with one or two normal breaths, then repeat three-part breathing 10-15 times twice or thrice daily.

11.     Straw Breathing Exercise – First count your number of breaths per minute (BPM). An inhalation and exhalation equals one breath – 12-20 BPM is average. Holding a straw lightly between your lips, breathe in through the nose and breathe out through the straw. Do not force the exhalation. Do this for about five minutes and at the end count your BPM again. Most people will find that they have halved their BPM, without any strain.

12.     Exercise for Relaxation of Chest Muscles – While sitting on a chair or leaning against the wall, inhale deeply through the nose and lift your head straight. Exhale slowly through the mouth while allowing your chin to fall on to your chest. Then inhale and return to the original position. The phase of exhalation should last longer than the phase of inhalation.

13.     Exercise for Abdominal Breathing – While lying down, place one hand on your abdomen, the other on your chest. While relaxing your abdominal muscles, breathe in deeply and slowly through your nose, so that the hand on your abdomen moves more than the one on your chest. (Once you have mastered that, you can further deepen your breathing by expanding your chest also right after you have first expanded your abdomen). Then exhale slowly through rounded lips so that it takes roughly twice as long to breathe out as it takes to breathe in. Do this exercise 10-15 times two to three times a day. And try to make abdominal breathing, without extended exhalation, a regular habit.

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