Yoga Breathing Exercises For Stress

Natural breathing impulses

Heraclites regards laughing, yawning and sneezing as being the three holy acts, und Goethe is of the opinion that the greatest benefactor for humanity would be someone who would teach us how to scream again.

The natural breathing impulses or natural forms of breathing, such as yawning, sighing, groaning, crying, laughing, snuffling, sneezing, smelling, coughing, as well as blowing, whistling and singing should be promoted as much as possible as they activate, deepen and regulate the breathing activity.

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These natural impulses have partially been suppressed, because due to our etiquette they were often viewed as being rather common and not respectable, as will become clear in the example for yawning: The first thing is to kindly put your hand over your mouth whilst yawning, and then maybe even swallow or suppress the yawn so that nobody is offended or annoyed as it could signal tiredness or boredom, and finally it remains completely stuck in the cramped or tightened mouth/throat/larynx muscles.

It is also viewed as being rather crude to laugh resoundingly or to let out a loud sigh. Unfortunately we are not doing ourselves a favour at all when we suppress and do not allow these archetypal and natural forms of deep breathing, stretching and relaxations to fully unfold, as Alice Schaarschuch calls them in her essay About Yawning (18), and which are the functional regulators of our breathing and muscle tension.

Also methods of psychotherapy, such as e.g. the therapy by Wilhelm Reich, the bioenergetic therapy by Alexander Lowen and the primal therapy by Arthur Janov and their modern derivatives clearly speak for letting out natural expressions, as we can thereby disperse much emotional tension, internal pressure, accumulated problems and their physical expression through exhaling and sounding tones.

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