Breathing hard


Of all the pastimes in the world, I was certain I had breathing cracked. What’s the biggie? In, and after a little while, out again. Falling off a log, or so I thought, until I was informed that I was doing it all wrong. Not ALL wrong, surely? Pretty sure I’ve got the basics right, but decided to hold my peace in case I was told my blinking was a disgrace as well, and my sneezes a travesty.

Apparently I breathe too high up; I should be breathing down into my diaphragm. Otherwise, when I get stressed I go into hamster heartbeats and start chuffing through my ears (I might not have got this absolutely correct). So breathing into the diaphragm is where it’s at. It means you expel more yukkies and it reduces acid levels in the muscles. But I can tell you now, it is a lot more difficult than it sounds when you’ve spent the last way-too-long heaving like an overwrought pug in a hot car.

The trick is to push out the tummy on the in breath. But it takes a lot of concentration, which makes me frown hard. And thinking about pushing out the tummy also seems to make me pout like Keira Knightley. I’ve been practising as I walk down the street (‘pushing out the tummy, pushing out the tummy’), so if you happen to pass someone with the look of an irritable haddock doing a crossword, let it go. It’s me, I’m breathing, and I’m probably still rubbish at it.


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