Strengthening The Ribs and Breath
Breath Anatomy • Breathing consists of two phases: • Inspiration • The period when oxygen flows into the lungs • Expiration • The period when carbon dioxide leaves the lungs.
Why is this important? • Every part of your body needs oxygen. Oxygen allows cells to release needed energy for the muscles to work. • http://video.about.com/asthma/How-Lungs-Function.htm
The Act of Breathing can be: • Passive • Quiet, involuntary. The way you breath most of the time. • Forced • Deeper, more controlled. Requires the use of more musculature. • Both Inspiration and Expiration can be either of these.
The Diaphragm • The diaphragm is the most important muscle of the respiratory system. • It is a large dome, or parachute shaped muscle that lies within the rib cage. • The diaphragm in action.
Proper Breathing • The diaphragm has to flatten in order to create space for the lungs to expand. • Proper breathing is necessary to prevent tension in various areas of your body. • Deep breathing requires movement throughout the ribs and the abdomen, but should not include movement or tension in the shoulders.
Other muscles involved • Muscles between the ribs contract on inhalation to open the ribs and bring the sternum forward. • Muscles in the neck and the chest can help raise the ribs more. • Tension in these muscles can hinder your breathing.
Abdominals and the Pelvic Floor • The abdominal wall is made up of 4 layers. • On forced exhalation the deepest layer contracts and allows for more control in downward phases of movement. (Grande Battement) • The pelvic floor consists of muscles that connect the sit bones, the pubic bone, and the coccyx. These muscles provide support for the pelvis and also have impact on breathing. (Plie)
Intake and Outtake • Nasal Breathing- inhalation and exhalation through the nose • Helps to filter the air on inhalation • Exhalation controls the amount of carbon dioxide released from the body. • Mouth Breathing- inhalation through the nose and exhalation through the mouth • Exhaling through your mouth can help focus abdominal contraction.
Breathing and Dancing • Strong dance technique uses a combination of both nasal and mouth breathing. • Breath control is vital to dance performance, you can’t just let breathing happen.