A morning stretching routine can improve blood flow, tissue health, and posture.
Good diaphragm function maintains flexibility and joint range of motion which will reduce the likelihood of injury or general aching.
Start the day relaxed, refreshed and energised!
There are a number of breathing techniques that encourage you to use your diaphragm to breathe rather than your upper ribs. An example is Box Breathing:
Place one hand on your chest and one on your stomach, and take a few deep breathes to tune in to your breathing rhythm. As you inhale you should feel the hand on your stomach being pushed away first, and then your upper hand.
Inhale slowly using your diaphragm to push your lower hand out over the duration of 4 seconds.
Hold the breath there for the count of 4 seconds.
Slowly exhale allowing the chest and diaphragm to relax for the count of 4 seconds.
Finally hold the breath for the count of 4 seconds.
Repeat the cycle at least 5 times.
Try to practice in the morning and evening, or whenever you have time to relax. This technique can be performed anywhere in a seated, standing or lying position.
Breathing retraining can take months to years to take full effect and become part of your normal breathing routine, however the benefits will be worth it. At the least this technique can be a great way to manage daily stress or anxiety.