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Expert Q&A On Yoga & Breathing Misconceptions, Part 2 of 2

Welcome to Part 2 of my interview with Rich Severin, PT, DPT, PhD( c ), CCS on yoga and breathing errors! As you are able to retain from last week, I recently contacted out to Rich because I had accumulated a number of questions regarding contends about existing that I frequently discover in the yoga world-wide that seemed questionable to me. As a occupational therapist and timber certified cardiovascular and pulmonary clinical consultant, I knew that Rich would have an extremely informed perspective from which to address my questions.( Please witness Rich’s full bio included at the end of this part !)

Today I present to you the much-anticipated second half of our Q& A. Between these two installments, I feel that this is a very valuable and mesmerizing offering for yoga teachers who are interested in are becoming ever more evidence-based in their teaching. I hope that you enjoy, and don’t are hesitant to share your comments and remembers below!



QUESTION 4: Is there an alignment relationship between the rib cage and the pelvis( or between the diaphragm and the pelvic storey) that ensures optimal physiological function in the body? We often hear in the yoga& gesture world-wides that it’s important that the diaphragm be “stacked above” the pelvic floor so that these two structures can move in concert during breathing. If the rib cage and pelvis are habitually aligned in such a way that these two designs are not “stacked”, can this result in pain( specially around the spine and pelvis) and/ or dysfunction in the body?

ANSWER: Everyone’s anatomy is unique. Everyone’s anatomy is slightly asymmetrical. Everyone’s. Our organizations respond and make adaptations to anxieties over go as well. The ability to respond and adapt/ remodel while preserving physiological run is how we’ve subsisted as a categories for thousands of years.

The ability to respond and accommodate/ remodel while preserving physiological serve is how we’ve endured as a species for thousands of years.

— Rich Severin

Now that’s not to say that abrupt or blatant the alteration of posture can’t to be translated into problems. It can and the majority of members of that has to do with uncovering the body to stresses and loadings outstripping its capacity or without sufficient time to make adaptions. It’s too not to say that precisely because someone has a slight irregularity from our socially fabricated( and not biologically constructed) standard posture they will have grief or dysfunction. So no I’m not certain that I would agree with that statement or cable of thinking.

QUESTION 5: Is there a known causal relationship between specific patterns of breathing( for example habitual “belly breathing”) and specific core preconditions such as pelvic organ prolapse and diastasis recti?

ANSWER: Like I mentioned above there’s a good deal of things that go into disease and dysfunction. I wouldn’t ascribe one mechanism to any illnes or dysfunction. There is some research suggesting that individuals with COPD might have a higher risk for urinary incontinence and pelvic flooring dysfunction but that’s at the extremes of respiratory muscle dysfunction. I don’t guess most people in yoga are at that height of illnes. However if one were to bear down long enough and they had pelvic flooring weakness/ laxity I could reasonably verify a prolapse develop. However even in that example it’s not a one to one rapport. I would caution against uttering that sort of relationship.

QUESTION 6: In yoga class, we are always taught to breathe in and out through our nose rather than through our opening. I can see how raising nasal breath during yoga might slow-witted the gulp down and could thus offer a meditative benefit to one’s rule. But are there substantial physiological benefits to breath through the nose instead of the mouth in a yoga practice – and in daily life in general?

ANSWER: Most people will generally subsist through their nose. Even those who use their cheek to live often still breath through their nose more. Nasal breathing is reflexive and as long as nasal airway opposition doesn’t get too high( like when you have a coldnes or congested nose ), the lips maintain their close and the tongue maintains contact with the back of the mouth cavity, you are able to expressed through your snout. Nasal breathing is innate and it allows us to warm, humidify and empty the air we inhaled before it gets down to our lungs.

Nasal breathing is innate and it allows us to warm, humidify and empty the breath we breathe before it gets down to our lungs.

— Rich Severin

The research is a bit limited and conflicting regarding whether cavity breathing or nasal exclusively existing is more effective. Some studies demonstrate that nasal expressing is more force efficient during rehearsal, however some have shown that there is no divergence. Oral living certainly is often used to dehydrate your oral channels and could impel talking more challenging.

QUESTION 7: If someone desired to change their habitual way of breathing( i.e. exist more into their rib cage and less into their abdomen, for example ), how easily can she/ he re-set the style that their autonomic nervous system controls their~ 20,000 wheezes per daytime?

ANSWER: There’s a lot to unpack in this question. Without diving into too much respiratory physiology, the rhythm and depth( pattern) of your expressing is automatically controlled by the respiratory control center in your brain stem. The decoration of gasping can be modified by various sensory inputs to initiate different neural circuits of the respiratory control center to modify the pattern to coincide the stress, activity or mode the body is undergoing. The most notable and potent sensory input is the pH of your blood and absorption of carbon dioxide( CO2) which are monitored by nerves called chemoreceptors. When pH or CO2 gets too high or too low, living cadence and depth will respond promptly in order to maintain a cellular situation conducive to metabolic work to keep us alive. The mas is unbelievably efficient and effective at this process, and control of pH will ever “win”.

… the evidence that exists now does not suggest that we can change our structure of living permanently due to the role subsisting takes to keep us alive.

— Rich Severin

We can build temporary volitional the alteration of our breathing structure. We can even temporarily stop breathing. Nonetheless as I mentioned above the self-restraint of pH will ever prevail. So although we can absolutely shape these changes temporarily, the evidence that exists now does not suggest that we can change our motif of breath permanently due to the role wheezing takes to keep us alive.

What many parties might study is that when one is stressed or in pain it usually ensues in hyperventilating or speedy breathing. This is due to our respiratory control center face the sensory and psychological inputs and thus selecting an according exhaling pattern to competitor this “perceived threat”. By rehearsing gradual breathing it may give one to achieve a more tighten nation or agitate themselves from anguish or stress. If this tighten state is achieved, the sensory input of a perceived threat has been absolved and different circuitry in the respiratory control center will be activated producing a more tighten motif of wheezing. We’re finding that some of the circuitry use or involved in these breathing “programs” exploited might be hardwired.

QUESTION 8: The word “breathing dysfunction” is a commonly-used name in the yoga& action worlds these days. Do yoga and crusade professors with no coinciding medical learn have the authority and expertise to determine and description living dysfunctions and conditions?

ANSWER: Breathing dysfunction is a bit of a nebulous word. We encounter this issue often in physical regiman rehearse extremely. Regrettably this period is often used cavalierly and done without performing a dependable, legitimate and objective assessment of breathing performance such as spirometry( lung volumes ), respiratory muscle recital, pulse oximetry or arterial blood gases, and markers of ventilatory productivity during exercise.

Visual inspection and manual assessment of gasping part are very subjective and are not sufficient to determine if someone’s breathing is dysfunctional.

— Rich Severin

Visual inspection and manual assessed for living operate are very subjective and are not sufficient to determine if someone’s breathing is dysfunctional. So unless those objective values were mentioned are being used I would strongly caution against labeling anyone’s expressing as dysfunctional; especially if they are walking and talking into your clinic or studio. Remember there are so many things involved with breathing and we generally do a pretty good profession at it.


Rich Severin PT, DPT, PhD( c ), CCS is a physical therapist and card showed cardiovascular and pulmonary clinical specialist. Currently he serves on module as a Clinical Assistant Professor at Baylor University in the Hybrid Doctor of Physical Therapy program and The University of Illinois at Chicago( UIC) Department of Physical Therapy as a Visiting Clinical Instructor. At UIC he likewise dishes as the program coordinator for the Bariatric surgery rehabilitation program and is working on a PhD in reclamation science with particular attention paid to cardio-respiratory physiology and obesity. He made his Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree from the University of Miami. He accomplished a cardiopulmonary residency at the William S Middleton VA Medical Center/ University of Wisconsin-Madison and an orthopedic residency with a focus on clinical experiment at the UIC. He has originated scholarly contributions and presented both nationally and internationally on topics relating to cardio-respiratory physiology and clinical tradition. He is an active are part of the America Physical Therapy Association( APTA ), The American Physiological Society and several other professional and technical cultures. He provides on the board of directors for Cardiopulmonary Section of the APTA as the chairmen of the communications committee and as a member of the nominating committee. Dr. Severin is also a member of the APTA Cardiopulmonary Section Heart Failure Clinical Practice Guideline growing crew, the Specialization Academy of Content Experts, and the editorial card for Cardiopulmonary Physical Therapy Journal. Follow him on titter @PTReviewer.

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