Your breath, while most of it happens unconsciously, has a tremendous amount of influence on your body’s every day functions, from stress control, to hormone regulation, even sleep and digestion. One of its most important functions is to stimulate the Vagus Nerve. When this nerve signal is dampened, (too quiet for the brain to hear it) various “dis-eases” can occur.
The word Vagus means “wanderer” because the effects of this nerve wander to over 12 organs and systems all over your body, making it one of the most important nerves in your parasympathetic or “rest-and-digest” system. This is why in Yoga, so much emphasis is placed on deep full breaths.
To practice full body breathing, simply pay attention to your breath and imagine taking your breath into all 4 sides of your rib cage (front, back, left, right) Prepare yourself for deeper sleep, better digestion, increased energy & focus, and better tolerance to stress to name a few!