Many Paths to Stillness of the Breath

“When the breath is irregular, the mind is also unsteady; but when the breath is still, so is the mind.” ~ Pradipika

I start with this quote as I am going to venture a bit away from it…well maybe way off from it.  But not really, because after practicing the primate Hu Breath I do believe that there will be so much opening in your body, that the return to stillness will be automatic -and deeper – and all irregularities will simply vanish!  There are many paths to reach a destination I say…

However, you may find yourself laughing with abandon before you finish this little practice.  Caryn McHose and Kevin Frank have written a delightful book called, How Life Moves, Explorations in Meaning and Body Awareness.  The book literally fell off my shelf today as I was sorting through books I want to keep in my move to Austin, and those that I will be gifting away.  Let’s just say that I will be keeping this one!

Directions follow which come straight from the book. This practice is the invention of Emilie Conrad, the founder of Continuum.

To do the Hu Breath, start by sitting comfortably on the floor, on a chair, or atop a physioball.  Breathe through your mouth.  On each exhale make a “ha” or “hee” or “hu” sound.  Breathe continuously in and out, moderately quickly, creating a visible pumping of the belly and letting the mouth experiment with different Simian expressions.  (that means monkey movements and sounds my friends!)  Allow the rhythm of the breath to pulse the body.  Play with the movement using an imagined sense of monkey and jungle persona to inspire the shapes of the movement.”

Personally I suggest that if you have a physioball, use it (bouncing is absolutely delicious!), as it creates another element to freeing your body and breath into movement freedom and instant laughter!  Breathing Spaces are only limited if you inhibit them….so I say go for it today and try on something completely different.  (even though I suspect that for some of you this will be just normal everyday behavior!)  Enjoy and let me know how you feel!!


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