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Old 05-25-2008, 03:30 PM   #1
JamesC
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Breathing for a Beginner

I'm having trouble breathing during techniques, rolls, etc. I tend to hold my breath like a lot of people.

When I was practicing a striking art I was taught to exhale while striking. It was a nice little trick that kept me from holding my breath.

Are there any similar tricks that you guys know that can help me with this?
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Old 05-25-2008, 05:48 PM   #2
Charlie
 
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

Kiai...

Charles Burmeister
Aikido Yoshinkan Yoseikai

"Calmness is trust in action"
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Old 05-25-2008, 05:57 PM   #3
Aikibu
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

Misogi....

Rolling...

Hard Practice...

Kokyu Dosu...

Every Class in this order....

William Hazen
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Old 05-25-2008, 06:20 PM   #4
Stefan Stenudd
 
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Exhaling

Generally speaking: concentrate on exhaling, and don't worry about inhaling - your body will take care of that automatically.
Often, people are so eager to inhale, when they get out of breath, that they hardly exhale enough to give room for fresh air. So, make sure to exhale properly.

Otherwise, aikido breathing is much like that of other martial arts: exhale when extending, and when doing movements that need power.

Stefan Stenudd
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Old 05-25-2008, 07:03 PM   #5
Mark Uttech
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

Onegaishimasu. Focus on the outbreath, the exhale, making a silent "ha". Then let the inbreath come in by itself, through your nose, not your mouth. It is pretty simple, but you must do the practice to get the benefit.

In gassho,

Mark

- Right combination works wonders -
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Old 05-26-2008, 01:44 AM   #6
Janet Rosen
 
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

ALWAYS exhale when you are about to roll or fall! It hurts otherwise...

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 05-26-2008, 09:01 AM   #7
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

IMHO, simple rule of thumb; breathe in as you enter, exhale as you execute. Breathe in as you empty, out as you expand. Practice all waza slowly and mindfully until it incorporates.

Lynn Seiser PhD
Yondan Aikido & FMA/JKD
We do not rise to the level of our expectations, but fall to the level of our training. Train well. KWATZ!
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Old 05-26-2008, 01:13 PM   #8
dps
 
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

Make the inhale through the nose quick and deep, then exhale slower out of the mouth throughout the execution of the technique, roll or fall.

David

Trust only movement. Life happens at the level of events not of words. Trust movement. --Alfred Adler
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Old 05-26-2008, 01:54 PM   #9
JamesC
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

Thanks for all the help guys.

Although it's been frustrating occasionally, it is kinda nostalgic to be placed back into "noob mode" when practicing aikido.
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Old 05-31-2008, 11:54 AM   #10
Stefan Stenudd
 
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Ki breathing

By the way, I have some pointers about, and exercises for ki breathing here:
http://www.qi-energy.info/qibreathing.htm

Stefan Stenudd
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Old 05-31-2008, 12:59 PM   #11
JamesC
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

Just wanted to say that the concentrating on exhaling really helped me out today in class.

We finished up the class with 125 rolls and I don't think I would have lasted very long without that advice. Thanks again.
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Old 06-05-2008, 04:24 AM   #12
Stefan Stenudd
 
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Breathing for the Beginner and the Advanced

Quote:
James Cavin wrote: View Post
Just wanted to say that the concentrating on exhaling really helped me out today in class.
We finished up the class with 125 rolls and I don't think I would have lasted very long without that advice. Thanks again.
I'm glad that you had good use for it. The most effective methods are often the simplest ones. On the other hand, the simple things are what need to be worked on the longest

Breathing is as essential in aikido as it is in life in general. We need to do it, no matter what, so we might as well do it well.
That's the same breathing technique for beginners and advanced aikido students, and it can be described as the physical "twin" of ki - an evident manifestation of the mysterious spirit (to play with ideas from the Tao Te Ching).

It is quite possible - and beneficiary - to look at aikido practice as a way of training breathing: that of oneself, as well as that of one's partner, and how to blend them.

Learning proper center breathing is not that difficult. It can be done with just a little persistence, for example using the exercises I suggest here:
http://www.qi-energy.info/qibreathing.htm

Learning to make one's own breathing blend with that of the partner, and using breath more than physical technique in the aikido throws and pinnings - that takes much longer, but also has its sweet rewards.
Breathing becomes much more than a necessity to stay alive, or to persist in exerting exercises - it becomes an expression of intense inspiration, benevolence, and mutual healing.

Stefan Stenudd
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Old 06-06-2008, 09:04 AM   #13
phitruong
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

I was reading the systema book "let every breath". It discussed what I called asynchronous breathing, i.e. your breathing does not depend on your movement and vice versa. I was experimenting using the async breathing while doing a couple of difficult iaido kata in tatehiza. I was much more relax (less muscle tension that was unneeded) with async, more so than using sync breathing.
Lots of interesting breath exercises to try in that book.
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Old 06-06-2008, 10:54 AM   #14
Misogi-no-Gyo
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

Quote:
James Cavin wrote: View Post
Thanks for all the help guys.

Although it's been frustrating occasionally, it is kinda nostalgic to be placed back into "noob mode" when practicing aikido.
James,

Sorry to hear that you are having so much trouble. However, you are certainly not alone. Let me relate a short story to you:

One of my students, a former profession soccer player, now coach, a man who makes his living off of his physical ability and understanding of conditioning came to me a few years back. He had quite a few years of martial arts in his pocket, too, so I chose to accept him as a student believing that he would move forward fairly quickly. However, he was not used to kokyu-based aikido which hit him like a 250 pound sack of potatoes each and every time he took ukemi. He certainly wasn't used to taking ukemi with an extra 250 pounds. This quickly became a debilitating issue for him, both physically and emotionally given his background. I was able to give him precise breath training to correct this.

Discussions on breath often go by the wayside. This may be because it is not discussed at all, or that the person who is speaking on the matter blathers on in meaningless ways. More often the listener may simply not be able to practically apply what it is that they are hearing. Mostly what I hear or read from others when the question comes up I find hard to listen to at all. It all sounds good on its face, may even help somewhat, but usually is more myth than meaningful.

I took some time to read through the information at http://www.qi-energy.info/qibreathing.htm While it contains quite a bit of useful information, the author makes the typical error of shadowing his "tid-bits" behind a meaningless cloak of his own personal understanding. A beginner has no understanding, and therefore gets lost in the language. Reading through that article, I know I did... very quickly, too! Meaningful understanding and improvement will only come upon training reliably and consistently. There is really no other way.

If you are sincerely interested in learning something about breathing, and much about yourself along the way, please contact me privately and we will go from there.

.

Last edited by Misogi-no-Gyo : 06-06-2008 at 11:09 AM.

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Old 06-18-2008, 02:41 AM   #15
Stefan Stenudd
 
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

Quote:
Shaun Ravens wrote: View Post
I took some time to read through the information at http://www.qi-energy.info/qibreathing.htm While it contains quite a bit of useful information, the author makes the typical error of shadowing his "tid-bits" behind a meaningless cloak of his own personal understanding.
The author would very much like you to elaborate

Stefan Stenudd
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Old 06-18-2008, 10:35 AM   #16
Misogi-no-Gyo
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

Quote:
Stefan Stenudd wrote: View Post
The author would very much like you to elaborate
Having just re-read the article, and having attempted to read many of the articles on your site only to have the same reaction, I have two basic comments:
  1. My original comments were made in a way so as to not directly criticize the content of the article, only the typically confusing way the material was presented.
  2. If you can't see or don't agree with my original comments, then explaining it further would serve no constructive purpose at all.

I will relate a (highly edited) anecdote Seiseki Abe Sensei shared that relates to this very situation on many levels. There is quite a bit of interesting historical background information found here in this article. Abe Sensei was already a master of Japanese calligraphy when he met O-Sensei in 1952. He had also been intensely practicing both misogi and a modified form of the number 7 macrobiotic diet in an effort to have a breakthrough in the depth of his calligraphy. Abe Sensei said that at some point he had the chance to show O-Sensei how he did misogi. he goes on to say that O-Sensei said that he had "another" way which was the humble way of saying he had a "better" way. Abe Sensei doesn't directly say anything negative about his former method. He greatly respected the teachers he was fortunate enough to come in contact with along his path. However, he did embrace O-Sensei's method. This tells us volumes about his sincerity and determination in obtaining the breakthrough for which he had been searching in the face of blind loyalty towards the methods he been practicing to date.

...</elaboration>

.

Last edited by Misogi-no-Gyo : 06-18-2008 at 10:37 AM. Reason: formatting URL

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Old 06-18-2008, 11:34 AM   #17
Stefan Stenudd
 
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Elaboration

Thanks, Shaun, for your elaboration.
I must confess that I don't really understand it, but of course that's my problem and not yours

Stefan Stenudd
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Old 06-18-2008, 02:27 PM   #18
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Re: Breathing for a Beginner

Quote:
Phi Truong wrote: View Post
I was reading the systema book "let every breath". It discussed what I called asynchronous breathing, i.e. your breathing does not depend on your movement and vice versa. I was experimenting using the async breathing while doing a couple of difficult iaido kata in tatehiza. I was much more relax (less muscle tension that was unneeded) with async, more so than using sync breathing.
Lots of interesting breath exercises to try in that book.
I have been doing several of the breathing exercises in that book for sometime now. I find them interesting and useful.
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