Lloydminster residents are learning to breathe to help with their health.
Amber Lamont, a registered massage therapist at Transition Health & Wellness, is offering breathing programs through her Facebook group “Breathing with Amber.” She met with the Lloydminster Rotary Club on November 4 to explain some of the things she does through the program.
Lamont first started learning about proper breathing techniques and the benefits of it in October 2018. This past month, she travelled to New York to see Dr. Belisa Vranich, a clinical psychologist who has written several books on the benefits of different breathing techniques.
Learning to breathe using the different techniques will help lower anxiety and stress, improve the immune system, help with poor posture and improve other health factors. Lamont says there are two different ways people breath: horizontally or vertically.
Lamont says most people breathe vertically or a mix of both and she teaches people how to breath horizontally using their diaphragm. Breathing horizontally helps with shoulder stiffness, lower back pain and can improve people’s mood as well as help with mental clarity.
“I teach them how to dismantle old breathing habits to help get the body moving and teach them the awareness of how our breath should be to help calm our nervous system.”
To know how a person is breathing, Lamont says to put one hand on the chest and one on the belly and take a deep breath. If the chest expands and the shoulders lift then they are vertically breathing. If the belly expands then they are breathing horizontally.
She says she also teaches her children about the breathing techniques as people can start having bad breathing habits as early as age five.
“When we start school, we end up having to sit and we don’t get to move around as much. The anxiety starts to rise in school, people poke you in the belly and tell you to suck in,” are some of the examples she says lead to improper breathing.
Lamont offers workshops as well as individual sessions to help people meet their goals whether it’s weight loss or reducing anxiety. She says age doesn’t matter if you want to learn from her.
“Twenty-nine is when we really start to notice the body getting rigid and I’ve worked with people who were 82. So if you’re breathing it will help.”
Lamont has worked with about five people over the year and says they’ve noticed improvements in their sleep and asthma.