breathing

Stress and injury are related and today's blog is about why. Stress is part of life, it is something that is impossible to avoid. How we deal with stress is the same regardless of the type. The body reacts to both physical or psychological stressors in exactly the same way. By pushing our nervous system towards a sympathetic state or, more simply, a flight or fight response. In the sympathetic state, we are ready for action, to run away from the lion if you will. The opposite of this is the parasympathetic state where we recover from the time spent in the sympathetic state. real stress

We live in a world where we are constantly bombarded with information, be it 24 hour news on TV or on our phones, which are more power in computing terms than the most advanced IBM mainframe of 30 years ago,  we get a stream of texts, emails, Facebook notifications to twitter and on it goes. You can add into this doing all the tasks that other people used to do for you. Going on holiday? You went to the travel agent and they sorted it out for you. Need to do some banking? do it online etc, etc.

All the posts and emails that I write are about trying to maintain a healthy, well functioning body, why it’s important to look after your body, and what to do when you’re sick of putting up with back pain, knee pain, shoulder pain, etc, etc… So you can do all the things you love… When it comes to your health, there is one, very simple thing that you can do that will lead to the mythical instant results - and that is get more sleep.

We take about 20,000 breaths a day so breathing well can help us in a lot of different ways. We see many people in the clinic and a common thread would be an inability to breathe with full, deep, slow and relaxing manner and  yet they never attribute this in any way to why they may be in pain. dreamstime_m_63245498
So what does breathing have to do with knee pain, back pain, shoulder pain or pain in any other area of your body?
First and foremost if you aren't breathing well, lets assume this to be having the ability to take nice slow, deep breaths in and out through the nose, then the chances are you don't totally relax. If you aren't relaxing properly then the chances are you aren't sleeping as well and if you aren't sleeping well you could your recovery ability is impaired. The relates to your ability to recover from your workout, your day at work or an injury.