As a singer, I’ve known the importance of proper breathing ever since I began voice lessons in college. Every note I sing rides on the air I push out. Longevity as a singer depends on good breathing technique. Many professionals have gone through vocal problems, even surgery, as a direct result of years of bad technique.
The breath is also an important aspect of effective technique in cardio and strength training. Inhalation and exhalation at the right time promotes proper form and prevents injury. And anyone who has ever taken a yoga class has experienced the connection with breathing, mindfulness and movement.
When I stop and pay attention to my breath, I am more aware of my body and my thoughts. Deep breathing helps me focus on the present and release tension. Proper “belly breathing” wakes up my core muscles and gives me physical stability and can improve my posture.
There are many benefits to studying the breath. Below is one article that I found valuable as I began to run after years of injury. It is targeted at runners and the specifics on breathing technique may not interest everyone. But the explanation on the difference between belly breathing and chest breathing has value for all of us.