Here is another breathing exercise that you might value as well as the other that have been posted.
Dr. Keizo Hashimoto M. D. presented some wonderful exercises in his book, “Sotai, Natural Exercise” which is translated by Mr. Herman Aihara, now deceased. The exercises are a WD-40 for the joints. I recommend this book for all of us no matter our process of aging.
Sotai” is a movement exercise that Cornelia Aihara taught at the Vega Institute(now closed)., as well at the Health Classic sponsored by Mr. Larry Cooper. healthclassic.com
Cornelia Aihara studied with Mr. Hashimoto. He was a brillant fellow who through his experience put together this book that has been most useful to people who have had injuries or skeletal/system pathologies.
The book is translated by Herman Airhara and has illustrations for various movements for various issues. This book is for sale through the George Ohsawa Macrobiotic Foundation, Chico, CA. Mr. Carl Ferre.
I am hoping the information will be as useful to you as it has been to many others.
This breathing exercise is taken from the book entitled Sotai, page 41 by the same name in the Title.
Breathing for Longevity
A good breathing exercise gives us longevity. The easiest kind of breathing exercise is done in bed before sleep.
Use no pillow. Put both hands on the lower abdomen, legs straight, knees touching, feet a little apart, toes facing inward a little. Then start to EXHALE. (Emphasis mine). This must be done by movement of the diaphragm. Contract the abdomen–then air goes out from the lungs. Completely and slowly, the air comes from the lungs. Then you inhale very automatically. This is very natural movement.
Therefore, exhaling is the important thing–the inhale follows naturally. Exhaling moves the backbone in a curved position and inhaling moves it straight. Therefore, deep breathing makes a backbone exercise.
Continue the breathing exercise and try for a period to exhale longer. Around the 10th day, you may breathe less than 2-3x per minute. Less breathing means bigger lung capacity, and long life. Please try this exercise every night. If you do better breathing, you are improving your health every moment because you have to breathe every moment of your life.
Deep breathing for psychology
Nightly exercise of breathing will improve abdominal power. When we have strength in the abdomen, we can move fast, don’t become upset, get work done and have decision power to overcome difficulties.
When breathing is around the chest, the orthosympathetic nervous system is stimulated and one becomes nervous. Contrarily, if strength is in the abdomen, the parasympathetic nerve is stimulated and we are less nervous and we have control power. Therefore, when we do deep breathing exercise, we improve our psychological mode.
Soft Belly Breathing
The following is information to resource a meditation tape as a variety for your Hara Breathing.
Another useful method for self help is Stephen Levine’s Soft Belly Meditation.
Through Soundstrue.com you can buy some of Stephen’s other tapes. They sell a relationship set, (6 tapes) that has on one of them a lengthy Soft Belly Meditation also as well as others you might enjoy. Stephen sells that same set too for less than Soundstrue…either way you have options about buying the relationship set, if you would like.
This tape is not the same as the Hara Breathing info in the Articles’ section which is resourced from Mr. Kushi’s The Book of Do-In. Once you get the order of the Hara Breathing routine down, following along with Stephen’s is easier to help you to stay on track with his presentation. You won’t be drifting off as easily if you learn the Hara Breathing first, or not.
If you establish awareness and strength in your
Hara/Belly, you will be empowering yourself to have adequate support for your
to be available for both your heart/mind that comes from stabilization to face life’s daily challenges, no matter the size of them.