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What do you want to know about breathing? Answered in our newsletter


Breathing and Sitting: Chairs, Airplane Seats and Car Seats that Kill

Health professionals opting to guide clients and patients to better breathing need address the environment. What is good sitting and breath support for a chunky overweight person may not be so for a slim person. So called therapeutic norms or average sizes create a sitting well for the slim person and cramped quarters for the large person. The slim person would sink in and lose his or her breath in a seat that makes the larger person feel right at home.  The larger person would suffocate in the space reserved for the slimmer one.

Most public seats, chairs, and ready made clothes are tailored for the average overweight person that slouches. We experience day to day "shaping" of our postures. When you sit partially collapsed you suppress the ease of distribution of your life giving oxygen and re-enforce any tendency to slouch when you stand. The sitting and standing posture invites excessive accessory breathing muscles that restrict breathing and either creates or compounds respiratory faults. Ask your medical doctor what a respiratory fault is. Odds are he or she doesn't know. It is an irregularly shaped ribcage It will disturb or distort diaphragmatic action, distort easy, natural breathing, reduce vital capacity, increase oxygen deprivation and play general hell with one's life force.


The driver's handbook for North Carolina states that

"A surprising number of serious crashes occur because a driver fell asleep at the wheel". The issue is not just sleep. There is a gradual slowing of reaction time on the way to sleep. And many might be categorized as half asleep most of the time, without noticeable fatigue.  Instead of insulting their character or intelligence I would first take a close look at the way they breathe.

From my experience, car seats should be classified as Mercedes "Bends" as in bends you forward and shuts down your breathing; Cadi"lacks" as in lacking proper breathing support; and BMW for makes Breathing More Work. Oh yes and then we have "airless" plane seats.

Sitting properly supported is important but does not in itself guarantee easy breathing. It helps to find a larger, easier breath and then adjust your sitting support to match the feeling of a deeper easier breath. When your breath greatly improves in the space of a just a few hours you can tell that the car seat or office chair no longer "feels" that it supports you to breathe as big and easy as you do now. It literally squeezes the breath out of you.  This is most enlightening for people. They would never have been able to sense any difference unless the breath was made much larger so quickly and in such a short time. If Recaro used these techniques they would sell tens of millions of car seats instead of thousands.

Comment from client.

Hey Mike: Every day, the rigid back of my chair gets more annoying.  I'm beginning to completely understand why a simple swivel on the back rest is so important.  It can't be a coincidence that the indentation and immobility of my sternum _exactly_ matches what the rigid back of a chair molds you into.

From Mike: Congratulations. When you develop your breathing properly your breath tells you when it is being compromised.

The more you practice the various techniques and exercises in the Optimal Breathing Mastery Kit the more you get the "feel" of what larger breathing is like. If you have a chair or seat that can "change" with you, you stand less of a chance of being squeezed back into the shape you used to be. Not understanding this can set you breathing progress back by several years to decades.

Check out the Volkswagen Cabriolette (Recaro is German too). Or find a company that adds aftermarket cars seats and get one  that supports easier breathing.  Or a Nada chair Lumbar Jack

Chair sitting requires support for the feet. I prefer captains type as I can push my rear end out a bit and feel the support in my lower back. You can get a good office chair that adjusts in every way for under $200.00.

Or a Nada chair

Have some private sessions with me and I always make up a custom filler for whatever car seat you travel with.

Make an inverted T with the airplane pillows and bring a towel or air pillow for your neck.  Get a catalogue of props, chairs, pillows etc from Relax the Back stores nationwide to fill in until you can get the "perfect" chair or car seat. On-board air flight is quite negative for breathing but there are many things one can do to offset that and still enjoy the many advantages of air travel and employment.

Above all, maintain a sense of your breathing, an awareness.  That is what will guide you, not so much your back pain as your breathing will keep you further away from getting back pain in the first place if you can sense what bigger easier breathing feels like and do what it takes to maintain its fullness. The chair or car seat that shuts you down is only the first step in letting a lot of other things (stress, suppressive people, car accidents caused by drowsiness etc) take the edge off of you alertness. Once you are compressed, it is often impossible to get "uncompressed". 

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mike@breathing.com  1820 Sunhaven Ct, Charlotte, NC, 28262 USA
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The breathing improvement techniques, practices and products outlined in this publication are extremely gentle, and should, if carried out as described, be beneficial
to your overall physical and psychological health. If you have any serious medical or psychological problem, however, such as heart disease, high blood pressure,
cancer, mental illness, or recent abdominal or chest surgery, you should consult your health professional before undertaking these practices.