breathing exercise to boost vitality|

60 Second Breathing Exercise to Boost Vitality

Breathing is a vital function in the body, and we take 10-20 breaths a minute without really even thinking about it. Because of this automatic nature, people tend to pay little mind to how they actually breath. The posture of the body, the duration, and the exhalation are all just done without much thought as to what is going on.

However, by stepping back and focusing on these attributes, you can not only immediately change your level of energy, but you can begin to work on creating good habits for your unfocused breathing. Try this short, 60-second breathing exercise:

60 Second Breathing Exercise

This breathing exercise was provided by professional yoga therapist Felice Rhiannon over at Gaiam. The exercise is meant to help center and revitalize your body, drawing exercise into the blood through slow inhalations and an incremental increase in the length of exhalations. For counting, I find that tapping my leg or the ground near me helps keep my seconds accurate and equal:

Inhale to the count of two
Exhale to the count of two
Inhale to the count of two
Exhale to the count of three
Inhale to the count of two
Exhale to the count of four
Inhale to the count of two
Exhale to the count of five

Repeat this practice 2-3 times (about a minute) slowly returning to your normal breathing pattern. With higher levels of oxygen in your body, you should feel more alert, sharper, and more energized with a sense of bodily presence.

Practicing Better Breathing

As you practice this exercise, it's encouraged to focus on the sensations of the body while breathing. Notice the pressure points, the strains, and the feelings you have with each inhale and exhale. Adjust your posture while you breath to find out what feels best for you. As you work through this daily, try to consciously revisit this outside of the exercise, like at your desk or while you drive. Adjusting yourself and taking the time to center yourself will help you feel energized throughout the day, bringing a sense of clarity and bodily awareness with it.