Let the Tension Go – ‘HA’ Breath

Let the stress GO… – ‘Ha’ Breath

 

Benefits

  • Releases pent up tensions in the body/mind
  • Helps to distract the mind from becoming more agitated during difficult moments in the day
  • Relieves tension in the shoulder and neck area
  • Calms body and relieves stress and anxiety
  • Stimulates thyroid gland responsible for metabolic rate
  • Stimulates nervous system
  • Acts as a guide to help reduce pent up feelings when practiced regularly

 

 

Cautions

  • If you have neck pain, do not do this breath as it can add tension to the neck area
  • If dizziness occurs, stop and consult physician; you may have a blood pressure issue
  • Not advised to do after just eating or on a full stomach

Key Points

  • Draw tension towards a ‘focal’ point at the back of the throat. This acts as a point of reference for all pent up feelings to go to before being released on the exhale
  • Use focus when drawing shoulders up to ears. Do not do this timidly or without intention. There is supposed to be tension in the inhalewhile drawing shoulders up
  • Contract navel towards spine on the exhale (like a bellows) to really ‘blow’ the ‘ha’ out on the exhale
  • Let the tension be released on the exhale. Be forceful enough with the exhale that the body feels the relief after. The exhale is not done with the vocal cords but the ‘ha’ sound is there from the sound of the breath and the force of it.
  • Keep head in neutral position while doing this. Do not draw chin up or down.
  • Open mouth for exhale

Instructions

  • Start in neutral sitting or standing position
  • On the inhale, breathe through the nose and draw shoulders up to ears in an exaggerated way
  • As you inhale imagine there is a ball at the back of the throat and draw all the tension in your body and mind toward the ball. It is the ‘focal’ point for all your tension to go to
  • Hold the shoulders at the ears for a second or two before releasing
  • The exhale is done forcefully through the mouth as the shoulders are ‘let go’ and released. The breath makes the sound ‘ha’ as the exhale is done. This is not a verbal ‘ha’. It is a breath sound.
  • As the exhale is done, let go of the tension in the ‘ball’ at the back of the throat – it’s as though the tension is being expelled on the exhale during the forceful ‘ha’
  • Repeat at least 3 times.
  • Take a moment after the cycle of 3 breaths, relax and enjoy the feeling of release. Repeat when needed – great ice breaker during tense moments in meetings! Get all doing this and take the fire down a notch.

Consider This

Tension can build up and create pressure in the body which affects
us in the form of tense muscles, aches, breathing problems and
ultimately mood problems. When tension is held in for a long time, it
can produce long term affects in terms of chronic muscle tension,
fatigue from tension in the muscles and irrational behaviour from not
releasing pent up emotions. Do the ‘ha’ breath to fight off the
potential of building up tension. The added benefit is that it feels
good to do any time, it’s quick and it’s easy. Get all the gang doing it
at your next meeting, convention, brainstorming session, girls day out
and so on.

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