We are into our third week of yoga classes at the Hummingbird Art Gallery in Hope Town. It makes me so happy to see people getting back to basics on the mat, breathing and believing and being present.  We are happy to be stretching and sweating in the fresh Abaco Air! Yoga gives us the tool to find the inner peace we all have as our birthright, but we have forgotten how to access it.

We are focusing on breathing properly because it  helps to detox the body, clear the mind, and control the emotions. After practicing for a while you will notice it is easier to stay calm in the face of conflict or confrontation. Are you using primarily your upper chest when you inhale? Studies have shown this can lead to upper back pain, chest pain, respiratory conditions and even depression and anxiety.

I encourage my students to connect with their breath outside of yoga class as well. When things aren’t going our way, a deep breath and FULL EXHALATION is instantly calming. It’s like magic. When you hear the term “deep breath” you might think of breathing in first. I’d like to change that whole way of thinking. Start by exhaling fully, and visualize your diaphragm rising up and squeezing the toxins out of your lungs. Then relax the diaphragm (don’t hear much talk about that muscle)  and feel the abdomen naturally expand as you inhale.

We can survive with out food and water for a few days, but just a few minutes without breathing will cause the heart to stop beating. So, we might as well learn how to breathe properly, and I’m still learning myself!

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