Connecting Breath to the Body

Grace is a quality that tends to inspire us. The graceful dancer or slow gestures of a monk resound with deliberate smoothness.

If we consider that breath creates our aliveness ... since no breath indicates we are no longer alive ... then connecting breath to our movement provides for a full-body aliveness. For some people, this connection continues throughout a lifetime. But many of us have to reconnect our breath to our movement.

A simple practice is to think about your inhale and exhale as you create a movement. If your inhale gathers energy to create a movement, then your exhale will coincide with the execution of the movement.

Take for instance loading the dishwasher ... if I pick up a cup and draw it toward myself on the inhale, then I'll place it into the dishwasher on the exhale. So you can turn any movement into a meditation! Say you're lifting weights ... inhale on the lift and exhale on the extension. Less effort? And look at that grace!

Here is a simple Qigong (Chee Gung) movement that shows the connection to the 4 parts of the breath:
Inhale_ Inhale Pause2_

Figure 1 – Inhale as the hands/arms move toward the heart center
Figure 2 – Rotate the hands during the ‘natural’ pause after the inhale
Exhale Exhale Pause2_

Figure 3 – Exhale as the hands/arms move outward (keeping a slight bend in the elbow)
Figure 4 – Rotate the hands on the ‘natural’ pause after the exhale

Continue this practice for eight repetitions and you have a simple Qigong Meditation movement. This movement is called Clearing Side to Side. It is a nice way to develop your breath and clear your aura.

Questions? Attend our Free Meditation & Tai Chi Class, Saturdays 9-10 am (Anchorage).