How & Why Chest Breathing Causes Problems – Functions and Benefits of the Diaphragm
This video begins with Dr. Artour Rakhimov showing you how to conduct a simple ‘Chest Breathing Test’.
The route of breathing test (how you breathe) can be done as follows:
– Place one hand on your chest and one over your belly button or navel.
– Without thinking too much about how you ordinarily breathe, begin to take, slow, deeper breaths.
– Then, monitor which of your hands moves the most, if you breathe more into your chest than into your belly or diaphragm, then the hand on your chest will move more and vice-versa. Usually your breathing pattern will be evident after 1-3 breaths.
Dr Artour Rakhimov then goes on to explain how despite the fact that most medical and physiological text books clearly state that 80-90% of our breathing should be done using the diaphragm – with the upper chest playing a much smaller role – probably 90+% of people are breathing predominantly with their upper chest, during sleep, at rest, and throughout most of the day.
When watching healthy people with ‘normal breathing’ we can see that they have very little visible movement in the chest at all, with perhaps a small movement in the 2 lower ribs, which is hardly noticeable and typically inaudible.
Even when someone is breathing 2-3 times more than the norm it would still be difficult to notice based on the sound alone. Usually if a person is breathing 4 times the norm (hyperventilation), it would become evident audibly.
So, are there any negative effects of chest breathing? Can it create suffering?
There is no simple answer to this question, as it is not such a popular point of discussion. But in this video Dr. Rakhimov hopes to shed some light on the subject, as he shares the information that he found from several medical studies.
– Problems with chest breathing and their causes: http://www.normalbreathing.com/index-chest-breathing.php
– Relaxed diaphragmatic breathing exercise: http://www.normalbreathing.com/l-relax-diaphragmatic-breathing.php
There are 2 scientific reasons and benefits why diaphragmatic breathing is much better for us than chest breathing:
1) Using the diaphragm expands your lungs down – allowing many more alveoli (tiny air sacks inside the lungs) to stretch out and get a fresh air supply – meaning the whole lung gets fresh air. As opposed to when we breathe into the chest, which only allows fresh air to reach the top half of the lungs. Due to gravity, the upper part of the lungs, have 5-6 times less blood flow than the lower part. Meaning that even someone who breathes 2-3 times more than the norm will still not be absorbing less oxygen, just due to chest breathing. (For some reason this effect is stronger during sleep – “Nocturnal Hypoxemia”)
2) 50-60% of all lymph nodes are located just under the diaphragm. Lymph nodes are important for clearing the body of toxins and waste products and can only be moved around the body by compression. Most people, who are barely using their diaphragm to breath, will have a build up of toxins from the pancreas, liver, intestines and other organs, just sitting underneath their diaphragm, unable to move due to the lack of movement in the area. Once they begin diaphragmatic breathing, these toxins can be pushed out of the body as nature intended. This is another advantage of having abdominal or diaphragm respiration.
Pages in Spanish:
– Función de diafragma: Beneficios de respiración diafragmática: http://www.respiracionnormal.org/diafragma-funcion/
– Respiración diafragmática : Técnicas e Instrucciones: http://www.respiracionnormal.org/respiracion-diafragmatica/
The YouTube URL of this video is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9DmVcqK6_A/.
The video features Dr. Artour Rakhimov, health educator, writer, Buteyko breathing teacher and trainer of practitioners, and the author of 11 bestselling Amazon books and the website http://www.NormalBreathing.com.