I always tell my students that one of the most important things we can do is use our breath in a way that is healing. There is so much power in the breath. We can use our breath to calm ourselves down, to energize or to bring balance. Most of my classes are vinyasa flow classes and have a significant emphasis on the breath. We synchronize movement with breath to unite the mind and the body.
In my Online Yoga Teacher Training with Online Yoga School, I tell my trainees about my work with students who are experiencing severe pain in their bodies. One of the key things that these students learn from our sessions together is how we use yoga to increase lung capacity and lung function. All of my trainees in my Online Yoga Teacher Training learn how to do this with their own students. You simply stretch the spine in all six directions that it will go:
* The spine can stretch laterally left and right
* The spine can come into flexion when we round the back and shoulders and tuck the chin towards the chest
* The spine comes into extension when we arch the back, lift the heart and turn the gaze up; and
* The spine can come into a rotation as we twist to look out over the left and right shoulder.
Stretching the spine in these six directions first thing in the morning can improve the quality of breath and help to reduce pain throughout the day.
About the Expert: Steph Mitchell, 500 E-RYT, CAADC, is a 500 Hour Certified Yoga Teacher. She is the founder and lead trainer at Online Yoga School and offers 200 Hour Online Yoga Teacher Training. Steph is also the founder of Yoga & Ayurveda Center, her local yoga studio