This exercise is a great way to release tension in the neck and between the shoulder blades. It will aid in upper body tension relief in exercises like the hundred.
To do this exercise you will need a mat. Start by lying supine (on your back) with your knees bent and your feet planted in the ground. As you inhale let the breath lift your breastbone towards your chin. Then as you exhale the breastbone will release towards the spine. Inhale as the chest lifts exhale as the chest releases to the spine
Things to think about
This breath is often called the pump handle breath. This is an image that refers to the breastbone. Imagine that as you inhale the breastbone is the handle on a water pump and you are turning the water on by lifting the breastbone. As you exhale, you are turning the water off and releasing the breastbone to the spine.
Often when we hold tension in our neck and shoulders our breastbone becomes rigid and doesn’t move. This breath is a great way to encourage movement in the breastbone while releasing tension in your head neck and shoulders. Letting your self imagine a melting sensation or softening sensation through the front of the body can help find movement and release