Fixing diet is pointless before you have fixed your breathing

Uselis

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Konstantin Buteyko's work is a good place to begin from, as I don't think any single person has ever studied breathing as extensively as he did. Buteyko had a multimillion dollar laboratory built to him by the Soviet government during the space race, in which he connected people to machines that logged dozens of different parameters, it was from this data that his method was born. Modern Buteyko teachers have come up with all kinds of fancy exercises which unnecessarily complicate the process though. It's most convenient to just learn to breathe right and rack in an hour or two of light cardio every day. Then on top of that you can do a couple of >15 min sessions of designated relaxation in the way I instructed above. It typically takes about 15 mins of elevated co2 levels for the co2 setpoint to change, and about an hour of daily cardio/breathing exercise to make progress.


It's kind of a two-way street: poor posture leads to dysfunctional breathing and dysfunctional breathing to poor posture. Ideally your breathing musculature would give support to the whole upper body.
Any experiences with Frolov device and his theories on endogenous breathing?
 

cjm

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It typically takes about 15 mins of elevated co2 levels for the co2 setpoint to change, and about an hour of daily cardio/breathing exercise to make progress.

A bath is a great place for breathing exercises because of the gentle pressure of the water. Add baking soda and lie down in the hot water blanket and proceed : )

Edit: do they make standing tubs? I need one.

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cjm

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@CreakyJoints shared some educated thoughts with me over DM about breathing, speaking, singing, etc. that I want to put into practice but haven't been able to yet. Creaks, this thread is right up your alley.
 

TheSir

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Any experiences with Frolov device and his theories on endogenous breathing?
I built a DIY Frolov and experimented with it for a short while but it didn't feel like worth the hassle, even though it is a bit more effective than regular breathwork. Some swear by it though. I'm aware of endogenous breathing but haven't looked deep enough into it to form an opinion about it.
 

Ben.

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Breathing is such a good tool to have and diaphragma breathing is the one most consistent in making me feel relaxed. I was visualizing it a little differently, as in breathing down the hips against the lower part of the spine. Idk, i can feel my hip moving backwards when i put my thumbs at the backsie of the hips.

But your explanation might work even better. Proper breathing is also important to move the lymphs and get the bowel moving properly. Someone posted here that breathing fixed his constipation which i find fascinating.


Something that is not mentioned here is improper breathing due to postural damage i think. For me, a shoulder and shoulderblade injury is what started the breathing issue in the first place. I can feel muscle/connective tissue stretching in my neck and my right shoulder when i fully inhale to max capacity.

Doing specific excercises i had to figure out myself help me alot in getting the mobility back that restricts the upper muscles for me to assist breathing correctly.
 

lampofred

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I think OP is true in that poor breathing is the cause of all diseases but it's impossible to manually fix your breathing perfectly, that's why a good diet fixes your breathing for you. I think forceful things like Buteyko might cause iron-driven damage. The safest manual way to fix your breathing is to stop thinking because thinking and breathing rate are positively correlated. People with cool, empty minds breathe less.
 

cjm

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I was visualizing it a little differently, as in breathing down the hips against the lower part of the spine. Idk, i can feel my hip moving backwards when i put my thumbs at the backside of the hips.

I like this visual.
 

CreakyJoints

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@CreakyJoints shared some educated thoughts with me over DM about breathing, speaking, singing, etc. that I want to put into practice but haven't been able to yet. Creaks, this thread is right up your alley.

Thank you for thinking of me! I'm not entirely sure how useful my knowledge will be here, or how well I can get it across just in text. I might have to make some diagrams or something...

Probably, if you have a big belly, diaphragm breathing will be difficult...

Not at all - think of all the rotund opera singers there have been!

Breathing is involuntary, and is controlled by the body mainly based on carbon dioxide levels. Increase in ventilation rate can also be triggered by stress (catecholamines), sympathomimetics (caffeine), higher metabolism (because oxygen consumption is higher). Your not supposed to control your breathing.

Your body knows how much it needs to breathe. If you ventilate fast that means you need to, the body does not make mistakes. It always tries to keep CO2 and O2 levels normal.

Some people are beyond ridiculous drinking many cups of coffee a day and are breathing like crazy and they think the solution is to try to control their breathing. Its comical really.

Poor posture in breathing could be a problem for some people I suppose. But trying to slow breathing rate through meditation or some other method is a mistake.

The sentiment of this post is basically true to operatic/theatrical technique. One can have a perfect breath which totally fills all the relevant cavities totally reflexively - when you breathe in normal conversation, you can go on speaking for a long time without another, but sometimes when people think too hard about it, this isn't the case. Trying too hard is often part of the problem.

For singers and actors, it is mostly a case of correcting posture and making sure certain muscle systems remain relaxed (don't suck your gut in all the time, for instance, as this restricts your capacity). No-one likes to hear a long screeching breath, and often a singer simply doesn't have time to do that kind of thing. Shoulders should not move - like the diagram @cjm posted in the bath tub, it should mostly expand downwards and around your middle, even slightly into your back.

As an exercise, one can try gently digging their fingers into the area beneath the ribs after exhaling. When the diaphragm is properly engaged, they should be repelled from that space as the breathe fills the lungs. A totally full breath can be felt low in the gut, almost in the groin, and very slightly in the area just under the armpits. Some find it useful to visualise the air going all the way to the heels (I believe this is often used in Tai Chi). It should not be labored, it should be relaxed.
 

cjm

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Thank you for thinking of me! I'm not entirely sure how useful my knowledge will be here, or how well I can get it across just in text. I might have to make some diagrams or something...



Not at all - think of all the rotund opera singers there have been!



The sentiment of this post is basically true to operatic/theatrical technique. One can have a perfect breath which totally fills all the relevant cavities totally reflexively - when you breathe in normal conversation, you can go on speaking for a long time without another, but sometimes when people think too hard about it, this isn't the case. Trying too hard is often part of the problem.

For singers and actors, it is mostly a case of correcting posture and making sure certain muscle systems remain relaxed (don't suck your gut in all the time, for instance, as this restricts your capacity). No-one likes to hear a long screeching breath, and often a singer simply doesn't have time to do that kind of thing. Shoulders should not move - like the diagram @cjm posted in the bath tub, it should mostly expand downwards and around your middle, even slightly into your back.

As an exercise, one can try gently digging their fingers into the area beneath the ribs after exhaling. When the diaphragm is properly engaged, they should be repelled from that space as the breathe fills the lungs. A totally full breath can be felt low in the gut, almost in the groin, and very slightly in the area just under the armpits. Some find it useful to visualise the air going all the way to the heels (I believe this is often used in Tai Chi). It should not be labored, it should be relaxed.

Ahh, I'm relaxing just reading this : )
 

S-VV

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Konstantin Buteyko's work is a good place to begin from, as I don't think any single person has ever studied breathing as extensively as he did. Buteyko had a multimillion dollar laboratory built to him by the Soviet government during the space race, in which he connected people to machines that logged dozens of different parameters, it was from this data that his method was born. Modern Buteyko teachers have come up with all kinds of fancy exercises which unnecessarily complicate the process though. It's most convenient to just learn to breathe right and rack in an hour or two of light cardio every day. Then on top of that you can do a couple of >15 min sessions of designated relaxation in the way I instructed above. It typically takes about 15 mins of elevated co2 levels for the co2 setpoint to change, and about an hour of daily cardio/breathing exercise to make progress.
Thanks. Ive read up on Buteyko, very interesting. He had a chart comparing co2% of diseased people Vs healthy.

Do you think the recommendation of cardio also applies to sick people, for example those that are mostly housebound? Would there be a progressive increase? Or how would you design a therapeutic approach (in terms of cardio) for the heavily debilitated body?
 

TheSir

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Thanks. Ive read up on Buteyko, very interesting. He had a chart comparing co2% of diseased people Vs healthy.

Do you think the recommendation of cardio also applies to sick people, for example those that are mostly housebound? Would there be a progressive increase? Or how would you design a therapeutic approach (in terms of cardio) for the heavily debilitated body?
The sicker one is, the better it is for them to simply rely on relaxed breathing instead of cardio, as not only will cardio be excessively stressful to such people, in poor health even just breathing right and spending time in the parasympathetic mode will provide cardio-like benefits without actually taxing the body. Then, as one begins to recover their health, they may begin to replace the stationary breathing with walking and eventually, if they like, with more intense exercise. However, long walks with proper breathing are generally all one needs in order to achieve and maintain a good level of respiratory fitness -- there is no need to abuse the body in the name of health. Our ancestors from early 1900s had what Buteyko deemed physiologically optimal levels of breathing by simply living an active stress free life.

As can perhaps be inferred from the above description, Buteyko had similar wariness of stress as Peat does. I suspect that @redsun , @lampofred and others whose judgement is that the Buteyko method is stressful or forceful may have gotten this impression from contemporary teachers who shouldn't be teaching the method in the first place, rather than directly from the source. For the most part, Buteyko is an anti-stress framework that seeks to improve bodily functioning within the limits of what the body can conveniently handle.
 
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