Qi Breathing Exercise 1
Extend your exhalation
Of course, there must be an absolute balance between inhalation and exhalation. Otherwise breathing just would not work. Still, lots of people are most concerned about the former.
We tend to focus on breathing in, to the extent that we completely neglect what happens when we breathe out - as if it were not that important. This discrepancy needs to be corrected, in order to create a flowing breath.
One effect of giving priority to inhalation is that the lungs are almost completely filled with air all the time, as if they did not want to give it away. Therefore, breathing is only done on that marginal lung volume remaining. In that case, you are forced to breathe quickly in order to get enough fresh air. That rushes and stresses the body and mind. It also easily causes you to get almost painfully out of breath, so that you have trouble even with modest hardships.
Only by emptying yourself of air can you fill yourself with it, and that is the only way of assuring that you get plenty of fresh air into your lungs. So, the first exercise is simply to breathe out properly, in order to fill the lungs anew - deeply.
How to do it
- You can stand, sit, or lie down, just what you like. It does not matter. But try to have the good posture that you have learned from previous exercises, and avoid any clothing that sits tight on your body. Wear loose clothes, and as few as possible.
- Inhale normally, through your nose.
- Exhale through your mouth - as much as you can, without losing your good posture. Continue the exhalation as long as possible - and then some.
- Close your mouth and let the inhalation happen automatically. Do not let your conscious mind control your inhalation. You will observe that you breathe in as suddenly as if the air was pushed down your lungs, like a vacuum suddenly opening to the outside world. This way, the inhaled air feels particularly fresh and refreshing.
- When this sudden rush of air has entered your lungs, you should not consciously continue with the inhalation. Instead, you open your mouth and breathe out, at least as much as last time.
- Repeat as long as it feels good. Remember to keep your good posture. If you get dizzy by the increased oxygen intake this kind of breathing causes, slow down by prolonging your exhalations. You can also take short pauses between inhalation and exhalation, but do not try to change the speed of the former.
You can do this exercise as much as you like. It is particularly useful when you feel tired or just a bit inert.
This is also the way to catch your breath after an ordeal. When we get out of breath, we are so eager to get fresh air that we forget to exhale the old air. That makes it hard to ever get enough air. So, when you are out jogging or doing something else that makes you out of breath, try to concentrate on the exhalations. You will quickly get more stamina than usual. Strive to push the old air out of your lungs. You do not have to worry about the inhalations, because they take care of themselves.
This kind of inhaling - suddenly and automatically, after a long exhalation - is invigorating. You will find it quite inspiring. When you face some task that demands the most of your abilities, this breathing is excellent preparation. It gives you lust, power, and the kind of spiritual inebriation that is the true mother of invention.
Qi Breathing Exercises
Here is a set of simple breathing exercises designed to increase your qi energy flow. I recommend that you do them in the given order, when you try them out. Once you've become familiar with them, you can do them in any order you please. Trust your instincts.
© Stefan Stenudd
This is a chapter of my book Qi: Increase your Life energy.
My Books About Life Energy
Here are the two books I have written on the subject of life energy. This website has material from the first one.
Qi - Increase Your Life Energy
The life energy qi (also chi or ki) explained, with several very easy exercises to awaken, increase, and use it. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.
Life Energy Encyclopedia
Qi, prana, spirit, ruach, pneuma, and many other life forces around the world explained and compared. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.
My Other Websites
The many life force beliefs all over the world, ancient and modern, explained.
Taoism, the old Chinese philosophy of life, based on Tao
, the Way. Also, the complete Tao Te Ching
translated and explained.
Aikido, the peaceful martial art. Its basics, principles, techniques, and more - in texts, images and videos.
The 64 hexagrams of the Chinese classic I Ching
and what they mean in divination. Free online reading.
Other Books by Me
Tao Te Ching
The Taoism of Lao Tzu Explained
The great Chinese classic, translated to English and extensively commented. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.
Basic Concepts of the Peaceful Martial Art Aikido principles, philosophy, and basic ideas. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.
I'm a Swedish author and aikido instructor. I've written several books about aikido, qi energy and other life force concepts. I'm also an historian of ideas, researching the thought patterns in creation myths. Click the image to get to my personal website.