Forum / Let's Discuss! / Breathing

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On: January 15, 2012 08:08 AM
How can I get clients to feel or experience breathing? It is something I cue all the time but i don't feel clients actually feel what I'm cueing.
On: July 22, 2012 20:14 PM
The best way for clients to experience their breath is to give them floors to breath into. With tactile feedback a client is better able to awaken and feel the sensation of breath. The teacher can do this simply with hands on cueing, putting their hands onto the back ribcage for example and cueing the client to expand and lift the back ribcage as the teacher helps to move the tissue in an upward direction. Using props is also an excellent way to create and improve the skill of breathing. There are many examples of this throughout the site. One of the simplest examples of this is wrapping a Theraband around the back and sides ribs and having the client breath into and expand their ribs into the band. Another tool that works well is the Overball. Placing one Overball under each armpit and asking the client to expand into the balls as they breath creates an awareness of the side body that few clients have until they do this exercise.
On: February 23, 2015 14:48 PM
I have two questions about breathing. Firstly when we are getting clients to think about their breath throughout their day to day activities, are we best to encourage them to use belly breathing unless they are exerting themselves, lifting a heavy box etc? Second question, with the one lung breath, are they keeping their core engaged, or letting their belly rise? Or does it depend on the circumstances? Thank-you!
On: February 25, 2015 12:17 PM
Hi there! These are great questions! First I like to think of the breath as a tool not a rule! In everyday circumstances I would love my clients to experiment with a full range of breath cycles depending on what is being asked of their body. As we shape shift throughout the day from task to task, it is important that the breath do the same so our clients can find support in all ranges of motion. The last thing we want to do is create Pilates robots where fluid movement becomes stifled because of the overuse of the abdominal muscles. Once you practice and fine tune all of the different breath cycles in the studio, your client will innately land upon their natural breath and activation patterns that help them in this manner. Now, if someone is in the very beginning of core training with you and has lots of pain and issue, they might need to work more on one breath pattern or another. But with time and practice their body will remember their homeostatic breath baseline. For your second question I think it largely depends on the circumstances. If you have put your client into a fully supported and passive side bend for the sheer objective of single lung breath (like in the cases of decompression for those with lateral deviations of the spine), then it is encouraged to let the abdominal wall fill with breath as this helps to unwind all of the areas that are in need to that expansion. Now say you are experimenting with with loaded lateral flexion (like mermaid on the reformer) it is best to keep the core engaged as to support the spine in that shared flexion you are asking for. I hope that helps! Keep the questions coming! Casey Marie Herdt
On: February 28, 2015 20:19 PM
Thank-you! That is very helpful.
On: March 02, 2015 17:15 PM
Anytime! I am happy to hear it helped!
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