Proper Breathing

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Proper Breathing

Postby Greg Jah » Sun Jan 20, 2013 10:20 am

Hello everyone,

This is my first post. I would like to thank everyone in advance for their thoughts and suggestions. I have learned a lot from reading the many interesting discussions on this forum.

I am interested in "proper" breathing when performing Tai Chi and Chi Gong. My instructor told me that breathing should support movement, but that there were no hard and fast rules re: when to inhale & when to exhale.

My background is primarily in "external" arts (kickboxing & Filipino Martial Arts), and in these arts it is very clear that you exhale when you strike. I'm wondering, since Tai Chi is a combat art (albeit a more subtle one), wouldn't the same principle apply?

For the record, I am relatively new to Tai Chi.

Best,

Greg

P.S. - A related question...are there articles/ resources you would recommend that describe proper breathing & visualizations that should to be performed when practicing Zhan Zhuang / Chi Gong?
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Re: Proper Breathing

Postby Dvivid » Sun Jan 20, 2013 12:49 pm

Greg, yes. Exhale when you strike, or whenever you are emitting power.

But, for beginner students, we say don't focus on breathing until you have memorized the form.
"Avoid Prejudice, Be Objective in Your Judgement, Be Scientific, Be Logical and Make Sense, Do Not Ignore Prior Experience." - Dr. Yang

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Re: Proper Breathing

Postby Greg Jah » Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:52 pm

Thanks, Dvivid!

Any thoughts re: breathing/ visualization while doing Zhan Zhuang / Chi Gong?

Best,

Greg
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Re: Proper Breathing

Postby Monsoon » Sun Jan 20, 2013 7:07 pm

Exhale when you strike, or whenever you are emitting power.


You will find that, in general, this is what your body will do without the need for any training or theory at all.

Personally I think that when one gets to the point of working on breathing it is not about when to inhale or exhale, but on HOW to inhale and exhale.

As for zhan zhuang I can only point you in this direction. - the first of 10 YT videos that will lead the beginner into a nice habitual practice (with a bit of theory thrown in).

Enjoy! :D
peace and harmony

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Re: Proper Breathing

Postby Greg Jah » Sun Jan 20, 2013 9:09 pm

Wonderful, thank you so much Monsoon!

Best,

Greg
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Re: Proper Breathing

Postby Josh Young » Tue Jan 22, 2013 11:32 am

The general rules are that breath and motion are one and that one exhales when emitting, but there are some exceptions and issues with this regarding application because one strategy of attack induces a muscle spasm that prevents proper exhalation or inhalation. Several martial arts employ this type of attack, to deal with it one must learn to use defense and offense without having to breath in the typical way while doing it.

This is however not always realized because of a lack of experiencing breath preventing strikes in advanced push hands or sparring. However it is unlikely that most martial artists will end up facing or using such attacks and dealing with them is an exception to the general guidelines regarding the coordination of breath and movement.

At least this is my understanding and opinion.
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