What is Functional Breathing?

With Functional Breathing, our patients learn how to reset their breathing with breathing techniques that cover the Biochemical (building CO2 tolerance), Biomechanical (diaphragmatic breathing over shallow breathing) and Psycho-Physical (the relationship between the mind and body).

The Reflection of the Breath

The breath is one of the first things we experience when we’re born. At this early stage of our lives, our autonomic nervous system generally controls the breath in harmony but it’s when we start to experience stress, trauma or health issues develop, our breathing may reflect these conditions. Our breath is like a mirror looking back at our internal system, a reflection of our inner health.

Dr Konstantin Buteyko, creator of the Buteyko Breathing Method, asked the question:

‘is the sickness causing the 
hard breathing, 
or is the hard breathing causing
the sickness’

When we lose control of our ‘innate’ breath, and bad habits start to creep in, we send signals to the control centre in the brain that instruct us to breath more air than we metabolically need. Then, the gases in the body such as Oxygen, CO2 and Nitric Oxide aren’t working as efficiently as they could be.

Many may not realise but it’s our tolerance to CO2 that is the main controller of our breathing patterns, not Oxygen. When we ‘over breathe’ or breathe too hard (or too fast) we breathe out too much CO2. When this happens, we have limited CO2 in our blood and without CO2 in our blood the hemoglobin doesn’t release Oxygen as efficiently, depriving our cells, organs and tissues of vital fuel.

People that suffer from anxiety, stress, sleep disorders, lack of concentration and breathing disorders will often have something in common; breathing through their mouth. This area is much larger than that of the nose, which is where a good healthy breath starts, meaning we take more air in that we need. But this is just the start of the domino effect of where things start to go a bit ‘pear shaped’.

In your consultation at Brisbane Livewell Clinic Alana, our Functional Breathing Practitioner will walk you through the fundamentals of how to reset your breathing with several different breathing techniques that you’ll learn across three keys areas; the Biochemical (building CO2 tolerance), Biomechanical (diaphragmatic breathing over shallow breathing) and Psycho-Physical (the relationship between the mind and body).

This is then tied into the philosophy that;

when we improve our breathing 
when awake, 
we improve our breathing
when sleeping, and improved
sleep equals a better quality of life.

If you’ve already noticed that you either breathe into the upper chest, take the air into your mouth rather than the nose, have been told by your partner that you snore at night, suffer any type of sleep disorders, breathing disorders or even stress, anxiety and lack of concentration, start your breath awareness journey with Brisbane Livewell clinic today.

Written by Alana Inwood

Last Updated on 10 June 2024 by Brisbane Livewell Clinic