How To Breathe In Handstand

hi friends kathy madeo here back with another tutorial this one all about how to breathe in handstand let's get started i want to unlock some of the mysteries surrounding the breath and also balance while upside down i want to start with this idea of breath retention and by that i just simply mean holding your breath think about when we lift a heavy box or if you've ever lifted a heavy weight what do we usually tend to do we tend to hold our breath there's nothing wrong with holding your breath in fact what's happening is a built-in mechanism your transverse abdominis your deepest corset muscle that wraps around your spine and cinches in at the waist is designed to stabilize and kind of pressurize in an effort to stabilize and protect your spine when carrying heavy loads so if we think about this in handstand when we go from being on our hands and our feet and we kick up or we jump up we're basically transferring a really heavy load right our lower body and our hips and our legs to stack over our shoulders so in this way we can use this idea of breath retention in that transition and getting upside down now one of the cool things about your transverse abdominis is it doesn't actually require any movement to engage it so you don't have to do like a core exercise and then do a handstand right it's all about imagining the transverse abdominis this corset-like thing around your waist cinching in and it's nice to do that on an exhale as the diaphragm empties and there's more space to squeeze around the spine so with that being said before you kick up you will take an inhale and then you'll turn on that transverse abdominus on your exhale and as you empty the breath and you empty the diaphragm we have another key that i want to give you that is particular to the yoga practice which is our yoga locks so udiana bonda an upward lifting lock that's all that means and what happens in our udiana banda is we actually are taking our organs and we're lifting them upward into the ribcage and so if you can imagine when we're in an inversion like let's take downward facing dog and i'll take an inhale in and then i'll exhale i'll turn my transverse abdominis on and i can actually start to lift and scoop all of the organs up into my rib cage and this has nothing to do with weight or you know it's you can do this if you have fat and a lot of tissue around your abdomen it's all about this sensation of hollowing out the belly and scooping everything in and we're doing that at the bottom of the exhale so that is our udiana bonda another nice thing about this lock of lifting the organs up into the rib cage is that we're basically taking a lot of the stuff that's kind of down here weighing us down and lifting it upward so that a lot of that effort and that weight has already been transferred before we kick up now another thing that tends to happen is we kick up we've we're holding our breath a lot of you might start to notice you're holding your breath anyway it's a very natural thing that happens in this movement and then the moment we take an inhale and we fall out i know that this happens to me all the time right so it's almost like there's breath it's it's moving things around and i lose my balance so one thing that i want to encourage you to do once you start to have some control over your breath getting into handstand is being prepared knowing you're going to have to breathe when you're up there if you want to hold it for any length of time and so rather than startling yourself by your own inhale just knowing it's coming and inviting it in and inviting it in in a smooth way rather than like a gasping like you're upside down you're suddenly like inhaling and that first breath so in this way we can see if we begin to focus on our breath and handstand we begin to focus our concentration on something while upside down and oftentimes that is a nice kind of light switch that will go on for you in your handstand practice because handstands are really all about focus right once you train your body what to do if you're not concentrated and focused and your mind is all over the place you're just going to fall out so let's see a lot of this in action so if i come into my downward facing dog i get my handstand prep i like to walk in a little bit shrug my shoulders up to my ears hollow out my belly step in shift my shoulders over my wrist and from here i don't just kick up i'm going to sync up with my breath so i'll take an inhale in i'll begin to exhale out and then when i reach that bottom of the exhale is when i'm going to kick and i'll actually be holding my breath um so i didn't want to talk so you could hear my breath you probably heard the moment i invited it in i had already gotten up i got my balance i let my breath in and i was just observing my breath so of course if you're not balancing in the center of the room no big deal all of this translates to using the wall i hope this little piece of information was useful to you and you can start to think about the breath more when you're upside down and how we can use a lot of the tools and the yoga practice to seek balance if you liked this information give me a like leave me a comment don't forget to subscribe if you're interested in really getting that handstand i have a complete online series just for you i've linked it in the description box below we'll see you next time

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