Energy, health and vitality have long been closely connected with the quality of our breath in ancient traditions. In China there is the concept of ‘qi’, in India ‘prana’, in Hawaii ‘ha’, and even ancient Christian scriptures speak of the ‘breath of life’. The Release the Power of Your Breath course will help you to gain a deeper understanding of your breath and will teach you exercises to develop breathing skill that will help you in every aspect of your life.
This course is a standalone course and can be practiced by anyone whether new to qigong or with many years of qigong experience. It will be of great interest to anyone who is interested in improving their health and their mental and physical performance.
This course is divided into four sections, each with their own distinct focus. Together these give a comprehensive practical understanding of the breathing function and how it affects all areas of your life. It is recommended that you work your way through the sections in the order presented. Each section has an introduction which includes important theory and lays out the big picture of what will be covered in that section, so be sure to review this before moving on to the exercises in the subsequent weeks.
The sections in order are:
- The Complete Natural Breath
This section will teach the basic anatomy of breath and how to use all of your breathing muscles in a co-ordinated way for a full, easy, natural breath. This is important foundation knowledge and skill for future breath training
- The Mind Body Connection
This section will look at the interaction between our state of mind and how we can use our breathing to deal with stress, or alternatively to become more alert and focused when we need to.
- Pump the Bellows Fan The Flame
This section will look at how breathing affects our physical activity in terms of metabolism, muscle activation and structural support. It will provide a guide to how to adapt your breathing to different levels of physical activity as you become fitter and more skilled. It will specifically look at the necessary breathing skills for strength, impact, endurance and flexibility.
- Ancient Origins
This section will look at how ancient philosophy provides a key to understanding the breathing skills explored in the previous sections and will further look at how breathing skills are applied to qigong practices. This will help students to understand the reasons for breathing in different ways during qigong practices and give them the ability to be flexible in adapting the breathing during qigong exercises according to their desired results.
Breathing exercises can have significant impacts on the functioning of your body. As with any physical activity it is best to build into these exercises little by little in order to allow your body to adapt to the new demands being placed upon it.
If you are in any doubt about your ability to safely do the exercises contained in this course, you should consult with a health professional before engaging in them.
If at any stage during the breathing exercises you feel short of breath, any pains or discomfort, immediately stop doing the exercise, sit down and breathe normally until you feel normal again. If symptoms persist, consult a health professional.
You can use one of the following documents to keep track of your progress with the RPB course. This is useful for helping to focus your learning and also essential for those wishing to pursue level two instructor certification. PDF: RPB Practice Journal, Word Document: RPB Practice Journal