What is Mindful Buteyko Breathing and why is it so important?

Put simply, living in a mindful manner is to live in the present moment.

By bringing into play and engaging with our senses of sight, smell. taste, touch and hearing without judgment and without criticism of self, or of others, we become more easily grounded in the present moment.

Conversely, if we allow ourselves to be constantly stuck in the past or in the future by worrying about events or things that were said (or may be said) or done (or may be done) in those time zones then we invite repeated self-criticism or judgment of others. Such an over active mind can result in stress and anxiety. It can also result in breathing more than we need to (hyperventilation) or in irregular mouth breathing and chest breathing (dysfunctional breathing).

That part of our brain known as the amygdala will be over activated. Prolonged behaviour of this type can also lead to depression, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and other mental and physical problems.

It is very likely that dysfunctional breathing and or hyperventilation will accompany such behaviour. This type of breathing can have detrimental effects on our health as respiratory alkalosis takes hold.

Buteyko breathing involves the learning and practising of a technique that incorporates mindfulness and leads to normal breathing. It also involves the development of an awareness of how certain life style habits (i.e. diet, exercise, sleep) affect our breathing.

The practice of mindfulness living and mindfulness meditation (or attention training) wonderfully complements the practice of the Buteyko breathing technique.

Both disciplines (when practised regularly) develop neural pathways as we rewire or retrain parts of our brain such as the prefrontal cortex and the medulla oblongata, where the respiratory settings reside.

Both disciplines enable us to develop the ability to be calm, to focus, to relax and ultimately to enjoy wellbeing and good health.

This is why I teach a Mindful Buteyko Breathing Course.

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