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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
One thing I have found in the various arts, is some latitude as to what constitutes proper breathing, both in training and in combat.

In KunTao, we were taught to inhale through the nose and exhale through the mouth. Your chest / diaphram should be moving such that:

As you inhale, the breath first fills the lower part of your lungs (stomach / diaphram expands first) and the then the breath fills the upper parts of your lungs (chest expands). It's sort of a rolling motion.

Exhale is just the opposite, chest compresses, then the stomach / diaphram.

The tongue is kept against the roof of the mounth, pressed on the hard pallette just in front of where the soft pallette begins. This accomplishes two things - prevents you from biting your tongue, and also applies some pressure against a nerve that basically limits the effects of strikes to certain nerve groups.

Short, explosive breaths are used when striking / blocking (all hard blocks are strikes under this system - soft blocks are more re-directive in nature and are used to create openings or disrupt your opponents timing)

Wing chun stressed a different style of breathing, at least the instructor I had did. Here we were breathing in and out through the mouth. No attention was paid to where we had our tongues.

Be interesting to hear from others on this topic...

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Keeping the tongue to the roof of the mouth also helps keep the jaws clamped shut so that you don't spit chips or have to get your jaw wired shut after a good pop to the chin.

In through the nose and out through the mouth seems better for training purposes, and probably helps with keeping the sympathetic response under control. If you're really under a lot of exertion, I think you're going to need the volume of air exchange that breathing in through the mouth can provide.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That's what I thought, until we really worked at it. (though I do tend to revert to mouth breathing when sparing for any length of time)

It's kinda like when people are out of breath and bend over with their hands on their legs...totally wrong thing to do.

Stand tall and you get much better airflow in and out of the lungs.

This is what I like about these kinds of topics... lot's of discussion, and there's really no definitative right or wrong way...

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Many of the concepts in Aikido revolve around the "center," a point roughly 2 inches below the naval. I was taught to focus on this point and inhale, imagining a silver stream of air going down and collecting at this point. With an exhale (normal or even a kiai) it is the reverse of this.

One freaky method of breathing comes from some type of yoga. In the video Choke, Rickson Gracie does some as part of his training... looks insane, abdominal contortions, etc.

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The center is pretty much the same focal point of the breathing I described above, at least if you are doing it right...

I think the main concepts are to be in tune with your body's functioning, and to have a method of focusing your chi, and recognizing it as such.

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Gotta concur with Krept;but also with all else posted here.I was not an Aikido(unless you count the close qurters wotk in Hapkido&Kobudo),but we were always taugth to breath as though your lungs went down right below yoiur [email protected],thats to say in thru the nose ,reight down to the core,exhale throught the mouth(on the exertion/strike phase),and in general not to "force "the inhale.Good to see tgis stuff out there,i'm a forgetful sort.
 
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