Part 3. Buteyko Breathing Exercises vs. NormalBreathing Exercises

· breathing, Health, medicine

Artour Rakhimov

Historical changes in durations of Buteyko breathing sessions; from 10-15 min (1970s) to 30-40 min (in 1980s), and then to 15-20 min (in 20th century).

Evolvement for the NB course: start with Frolov or DIY devices and later progressed to Buteyko breathing exercises.

The original idea to combine the Buteyko method with breathing devices (the Frolov device, in particular) was suggested by Leo Volkov, a Buteyko teacher from Australia who was a translator for the 1st BIBH Conference in New Zealand in 2000. He sent me an email with his experience with the Frolov device, and soon later I was buying 24-piece boxes of Frolov devices from Russia. Later, this resulted in the development of the Amazing DIY Breathing Device.

Advantages of devices for breathing exercises:
– easier to practice (diaphragm too) and learn,
– higher final CPs,
– faster progress.

New innovations and differences:
C. Teaching Buteyko breathing exercises with 6 preliminary requirements, numerous contraindications (in the past, only hypertension and panic attacks were mentioned in Soviet sources) and 3 effects related to overtraining (overtraining, lost CO2 sensitivity and blunted CO2 sensitivity).

Extra contra-indications include:
– Presence of transplanted organs
– Pregnancy
– Brain traumas and acute bleeding injuries
– Blood clots
– Acute stages (exacerbations) of life-threatening conditions (infarct, stroke, cardiac ischemia, severe asthma attack, metastasizing cancer, septic shock, multiple organ failure, near-death experience, etc.)
Insulin-dependent diabetes (type 2 diabetes)
– Loss of CO2 sensitivity
– Low weight (underweight) breathing students.

Students of the NormalBreathing course:
1) are screened for temporary restrictions and contra-indications to ensure safety of breathing exercises
2) systematically learn crucial requirements for practicing breathwork
3) gradually progress to more difficult breathing exercises
4) are informed and monitored for prevention of potential problems due to:
– general overtraining due to breathing exercises
– a loss of CO2 sensitivity
– blunted CO2 sensitivity.

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