Esther Nagle of balance and breathe using her ventolin inhaler for asthmaI was diagnosed with asthma when I was a child, and very quickly developed some really bad habits where my inhalers were concerned.  Despite lectures from countless doctors and my mum, I have never managed to get into the habit of using the preventative inhaler, and instead became completely dependent on my reliever inhaler.

This is a pretty scary and dangerous way to live, and I don’t recommend it to anyone.  Such is my dependence that the realisation I don’t have it with me can be all I need to be in need of emergency treatment within an hour.  As soon as I know that I don’t have it.  I go into stress mode, my airways tighten and I can’t breathe.

Or at least, that used to be the case.

In the last 3 years, things have changed.

As well as quitting smoking (a smoking asthmatic, that is EPIC self sabotage, isn’t it?) I have learned to breathe properly!

They never taught me THAT in asthma clinic!

Since learning to breathe deeply, slowly and rhythmically, I have learned to breathe through the panic, to breathe through the wheeziness, to breathe through a day with no Ventolin.

No Ventolin!  Crisis!?

This morning I went to Cardiff on the train, and took my bike to cycle from the station to the venue and back.

When I arrived at the venue I was a bit out of breath and wheezy, so went into my bag for my Ventolin.

It wasn’t there.

I had put it in the coat pocket I wore to take Shanti for a walk, and not transferred it to my bag before I left.

I had a choice.  I could panic, and have to go home and miss the event I had travelled to.

Or I could do some of the breathing practices I know, and get on with my day.

Guess which I chose?

Breathe the pain away

I am now on the way home, having cycled back again, got wheezy again, but breathed through it.

I have barely thought about my inhaler for most of the day.  I don’t need it.

I still need it in my life, but thanks to the Pranayama I learned as part of my yoga teacher training, I am not paralysed by its absence the way I was.

amit ray breath anxiety quote image

Breathe Better, Live Better

I now have improved lung capacity, more efficient breaths.

I take in more oxygen and release more carbon dioxide, and more importantly, I can control my emotional response to the realisation that I don’t have it.

I have always thought that, for me at least, asthma was more psychological than physical.  It is a stress related condition, and it most certainly was for me!

Now, I don’t let the stress rise in me, and my inhaler use has drastically reduced, along with my stress levels!

Learn to breathe

I can help you reduce stress and improve the quality of your breathing.  Learning to breathe properly can transform life completely.  Better sleep, increased energy, clarity of mind, lower stress, and better concentration are just a few of the benefits you can get from learning to breathe.

back to the breathI offer online one to one coaching to help you learn to control your breath, and reap the benefits of Pranayama (controlled breath).  The Back to the Breath package is a 2 hour one to one programme which will help you to improve your breathing, strengthen your lungs, and gain all the benefits of learning to breathe that I have listed above.

We will work in 2.1 hour sessions, and I will teach you the practices that you can then make part of your daily routine to develop and improve your breath.

These powerful exercises can have the power to transform your world, and I would be thrilled to help you on the road to this great transformation!

Find out more about the Back to the Breath programme and book your first slot!


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Esther Nagle
Teacher, writer, speaker at Balance and Breathe
Esther is a former alcoholic, smoker and all round stressed out mess. She found the path to health, happiness, freedom and joy through Yoga. She is a passionate advocate for the power of Yoga, and time in Nature, in bringing balance to life, and giving you control over your health, happiness and wellbeing.

Esther is a powerful public speaker, writer and author. Her first book, Bent Back into Shape, Beating Addiction Through Yoga, has gained many 5 star reviews and has helped many people along their recovery journey.

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