Exercises to Relax and Help Breathing|
Here are a few ideas to consider before giving a speech
Yawn and stretch with as many parts of your body as you can. Open your mouth
wide as you yawn.
Alignment is essential. Place your feet parallel, with the weight balanced
between toes and heels. The feet should be directly under the pelvis. Tuck in
the buttocks, draw the abdomen up and in. Imagine an eye hook in the top of your
head attached to a cord in the ceiling. This lengthens the spine. Your shoulders
should be down and relaxed and your feet grounded to the floor. Feel long but
relaxed. This position gives plenty of room for your lungs and diaphragm and
also presents a positive self-image.
Still standing aligned, breathe in through your nose
and out through you mouth. Close your eyes. Relax on
each exhale. Breathe from your diaphragm so that the breath movement takes place
in the abdomen, not in the chest.
- Neck Stretch
- Chin Down - on your next exhale, let your chin come down toward your
chest, keeping the rest of your body aligned. Do these for two exhales.
- Neck Swings - leaving your chin down, move in gentle neck swings from
right to left. Exhale each time you swing left. Do six times.
- Over Shoulders - slowly lift your head back to upright and look over
your right shoulder. Stay for two exhales. Now do it on the left side.
- Side to side - slowly and smoothly switch to right, exhale. Inhale
as you turn to the left. Repeat six times.
- Back Stretch
- Clasp your hands behind your back and raise your arms as
high as possible. Push your shoulder blades together and
hold for two exhales.
- Clasp your hands overhead. With straight arms, bring them as far
behind your head as you can. Hold for two exhales.
|Side Stretch - Place your right arm over your head toward
the left shoulder. Hold for two exhales. Place the left arm
over the head toward the right. Do two exhales. (do not
Shake Out - Shake your arms, then shoulders and other parts
of the body until the muscles feel slightly warm. Stop and
stand aligned. Relax.
Press Walk - Roll onto the ball of your right foot, bending
right knee slightly. Switch and roll on the left foot.
Alternate as in walking in place but keep your toes on the
floor. Pick up the rhythm with arms swinging freely. Think
Close your eyes and relax on each exhale two times. Open
your eyes and see the space around you fully. Always
remember to breathe from the DIAPHRAGM and ALIGN your body.
Remember that your posture and body movement are physically
connected to your breath and voice. Your body posture and
movement affect people's interpretation of what you are
saying. They affect your own self-image and your mental