I first discovered Michael Hutchinson at the Om Yoga Show where he had a stall in the exhibition hall to promote his new book Breath For Health. Michael is a yoga therapist who trained with TKD Desikachar’s student, Paul Harvey, when yoga therapy was first recognised in the West.
With over 30yrs of practice and scientifically trained research, Michael has created this concise handbook on how to improve your breathing. Based on current medical research, this book utilises the breath-mind-body relationship. Seeing as I was on the hunt for my next morning commute read, I thought I might choose something that is recommended by some of the worlds most experienced yoga teachers to make my designated time each morning more beneficial to my health.
In this insightful and empowering book, Michael delves into the profound connection between our breath and our overall wellbeing. He masterfully unravels the science behind breathing techniques, demonstrating how conscious breath control can truly transform our physical, mental, and emotional health and I’ve found myself captivated by each and every page.
His writing is both informative and engaging, a fine balance to achieve, as he seamlessly blends scientific research with practical guidance. Meticulously explaining the intricacies of respiratory anatomy and physiology, whilst making complex concepts incredibly accessible to readers of all backgrounds. His passion for the transformative power of breath work is infectious and has made such a positive difference to my mindset from the moment that I turned the very first page.
A key strength of this book really lies in its comprehensive approach to breathing practices. It introduces a wide range of techniques, from simple diaphragmatic breathing up to more advanced pranayama exercises, and patiently explains the benefits of each technique, providing clear instructions and diagrams for practice throughout.
Whilst the book focuses on the practical application of breath work, it’s delivered with such a personal approach, guiding the reader to select the techniques that best suits their individual needs and goals. I adore how it encourages experimentation and self-awareness, empowering us all to become our own breath work experts without having to be a yoga teacher, physiotherapist or psychotherapist.
Breath for Health is not merely a collection of breathing exercises; it is in fact a roadmap to holistic wellbeing which beautifully emphasises the connection between the breath and various aspects of our health, including stress management, pain relief, sleep optimisation and emotional balance. For those who appreciate a deeper understanding, there is compelling evidence throughout to support these claims, drawing from a wealth of scientific research.
This book’s impact extends beyond individual well-being by addressing the broader implications of breath work for society as a whole. It highlights the role of breath work in fostering mindfulness, compassion and resilience to promote a more mindful and interconnected world which, for me as a mother and Buddhist, is paramount.
This is such a valuable resource for anyone seeking to enhance their physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. Michael’s expertise and passion for breath work make this an engaging and informative read which has certainly brightened my daily commute and made such a positive impact on so many aspects of my life. I hope in sharing this, I may inspire you too to have a read and take control of your breathing to transform your life for the better.