We all do it around 23,000 times a day. But when it comes to breathing, practice doesn’t necessarily make perfect. If you’ve noticed feeling panicky and suffocated while wearing a mask at the supermarket, chances are you’re not doing it right.
The good news is you can become a better breather. Breathwork has been getting a lot of hype in the wellness sphere over the last few years, while yoga practitioners and Buddhist monks have been paying attention to breathing for far longer.
One of the stars of the breathing world is Dutch extreme athlete Wim Hof, who counts Oprah Winfrey and Orlando Bloom among his followers. He recommends breathing techniques – in conjunction with cold therapy and meditation – to improve your energy levels, reduce stress and anxiety, and rebalance your immune system, which all sounds very appealing during a global pandemic.
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