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Breathing? What? We do it everyday, without thinking about it don’t we? It’s a natural process that our bodies do subconsciously. This maybe true for everyday life.  However, DDP YOGA has changed that subconscious activity for me. I no longer just let the breath in and out, I think about it. In stressful situations, I think about it. In periods of relaxation, I think about it. When I’m driving, when I’m walking, talking, drumming, running, eating……you get the idea. But most importantly I think about it when I’m doing my DDP YOGA or teaching a DDP YOGA class.

Let’s go back to the beginning of my personal DDP YOGA journey. Each new workout would bring about the same challenges in different forms, new or advanced versions of moves and breathing challenges. Why did it bring about breathing challenges? I’m not totally convinced I know the answer to this but I’m 90% sure it has to do with brain function. If you are putting your body through something new, like a Fat Burner for the first time, you are most likely going to forget to breathe. This might be followed by you hyperventilating through the workout, going dizzy as you roll up from a fold forward, feeling tighter than normal……etc etc…..

Why does this happen? All the breath cycles are there, we’ve heard Dallas call them. Did we not hear them? Yes, you heard them. It’s cognitive, you won’t compute the breathing because it’s something you do automatically, where as a twisting lunge might be completely new. Therefore, your brain will switch from doing the automatic stuff and focus on the new item on the list. As you practise these moves, you get better at breathing through them and your body learns to function accordingly.

How does this affect DDP YOGA instructors? We need to be on point when calling inhalations and exhalations throughout our classes. Your job is to instruct the class when to breathe as well as move. Remember a new person in class will not only feel like you did at home but they also have the added pressure of being amongst other people. You want to minimise the risk of people getting light headed or hyperventilating in class by calling as many breath cycles as you can.

When you start your class with the breathing, be sure to explain that this is how they will breathe through the class. Explain that it will help them get deeper into those positions as you go through the workout.

It’s our goal to give a breathing instruction before each movement.

It’s worth noting that as an instructor YOU WILL be breathing differently to everyone else in class, as the talking and calling will take your wind. Some people will try and follow you, try and spot this early on and ask them to breathe with your cues not with you.

Remember, if someone feels dizzy, light headed or too out of breath they are less likely to return to your class. Your breath cues could be the key to your students success!

Be good out there and keep kickin’ it! Breathe deep!

Owning your breath = owning your life!

See you next time!

Please email all questions and blog requests to haydn@ddpyoga.com

DDP YOGA Certification Director of Training

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