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January - February 2007

-          Physical Fitness
-          Hyperventilation and asthma
-          Wanted: Buteyko Practitioners
-          NEW Buteyko Book by Dick Kuiper
-          Buteyko Tip of the Season

I hope that 2007 brings you peace and love, as well as all the other good things that you want and deserve.
Physical Fitness
Starting a new year often brings a quest for physical fitness and slimness as we aim for improved health.  The Buteyko Method is about good breathing and good health, so it is a useful adjunct to any get fit plan.   Good breathing means more than breathing quietly and easily when you are resting.  It also means:

  • being able to exercise without asthma or excessive breathlessness.
  • less lactic acid is produced and muscles don't quickly become sore or tired.
  • heart rate doesn't exceed safe margins.
    All these things mean increased speed and improved performance within a short time.
      “My son is a new person since using the Buteyko technique.  He is sports mad and now plays rugby, runs, swims, and wins!!! Without breathlessness.” Tracey
    Take a few tips from a Buteyko practitioner and see if you can improve your fitness:
  • Never breathe through your mouth when exercising.  Instead go a little more slowly, do less, or lift lighter weights while you breathe through your nose.  If you exercise regularly (3 or more times a week) then within 2 weeks you will be back to your usual speed and strength and still able to breathe through your nose while doing it.  The advantages of nose-breathing include not inhaling all those minute particles of dust that are always in the air, the inhaled air is warmed and moistened so that your throat and lungs are not being cooled and dried out each time that you breathe.  You will less dehydrated, less short of breath, and you will have more stamina.  These advantages will allow you to do more exercise that will improve your fitness.
  • If you have asthma then think about the basic cause of this condition, which is said to be inflammation in the airways walls. If you had an inflamed ankle would you take a pain killer to mask the problem and go for a run?  Unless you wanted to do further damage to your ankle, you probably wouldn't.  Instead you would take some anti-inflammatory medications, rest the ankle and then start a gentle exercise regime until your ankle is back to normal.  Since it is sensible to deal with an inflamed ankle in this way; why would anyone take a puff of Ventolin that masks the asthma problem and go for a run? It is much more appropriate to take the same approach with inflamed airways as you would with an inflamed ankle. If you are not well enough to exercise without taking Ventolin, then you are certainly not well enough to exercise with it. Take the anti-inflammatory medication and start a gentle easy exercise programme that doesn't irritate your airways and cause more damage.
  • When you feel short of breath during exercise then do not talk or eat food because these things will increase breathlessness at this time.
  • If you have asthma, always carry your inhaler in case you need to use it, but remember to only use when you need it rather than routinely.

Hyperventilation and Asthma
Have you ever stopped to think about how many breaths you take each day?  We often place a lot of emphasis on maintaining normal blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol levels, yet we don't often think about maintaining a normal breathing rate.  The medically accepted rate of breathing while resting is between 4 and 6 litres of air a minute, which works out at around 20,000 breaths a day.  Anything above this rate is termed hyperventilation, which affects your entire body because it washes out slightly more carbon dioxide than should be removed, and this causes less oxygen to be delivered to your tissues and organs.  By the time you wake up the next day you will have a stuffy nose, be feeling tired, short of breath on exertion and probably not filled with much joie de vivre.  It has been shown repeatedly that asthmatics at rest breathe up to fourteen litres of air a minute, and even more than this when they start having symptoms.
Asthmatics often cannot imagine not having asthma or that natural methods that change your breathing can be more effective than taking drugs.  We enrolled our son in a Buteyko course because his drugs seemed less effective - he was taking more drugs than ever before, yet his symptoms were worse.  It felt as if the medication was making his asthma worse, but we couldn't believe that this could really be true.  Today we know that our instincts were right because many studies have been published showing that the over-use of bronchodilator medications worsens asthma, and Robert was taking masses of it every day.  We went to Buteyko out of desperation and now he hasn’t been to a doctor with asthma for almost fourteen years.  The change was incredible.    Stop feeling that you need to endure the limitations of asthma for the rest of your life.  Get going and learn the Buteyko method - you have nothing to lose, and everything to gain!
Wanted: Buteyko Practitioners
Russell and I have taught the Buteyko method to more than 7000 people with asthma, allergies, snoring, sleep apnoea, panic attacks, and other conditions related to hyperventilation, but there are literally millions more who would benefit from Buteyko. For example there are an estimated 10 million people with asthma in the USA alone, and less than 50 Buteyko practitioners teaching there.  You can teach the techniques as part of your existing natural therapy business or you can set up a new Buteyko practice.  Buteyko is an education programme and not a medical treatment, so you do not have to be a medical person to do teach these amazing techniques that bring life back to people.  Practitioner training courses are starting very soon in Vancouver and the UK, so if your new year's resolution is to make a difference in your community, then email Jennifer at info@buteykoworks.com for further details of our training programme. 

NEW Buteyko Book by Dick Kuiper
Dick Kuiper is a university lecturer who trained with us several years ago.  He has this to say about teaching Buteyko: 
'Teaching Buteyko can be challenging at times, but I love what I am doing, the Buteyko method works and the method gets better known every day. Having worked in a university department where there was a keen interest in the diffusion of innovations throughout societies I know that it might take time before Buteyko’s ideas will be accepted. As Schopenhauer, the great German philosopher, said around 1850: “Every truth goes through three stages: (1) first it is ridiculed; (2) then it is fiercely opposed; (3) and finally it is accepted as self evident.” I expect Buteyko’s theory to follow the same route.’
Dick has just released a new book about Buteyko that is written in Dutch.  It is called Leven Zonder Astma. Dankzij de Buteyko Methode. ISBN number 90.76771.85.5.  I cannot read the Dutch language, but I can tell you that it looks very impressive! And I urge you to get a copy if you, or an interested friend, can read the language.   Talk to Dick about getting a copy at his email address:  dick.kuiper@buteyko-instituut.nl
For those who can only read English books about Buteyko I am giving you a blatant promotion of our own book that is called The Carbon Dioxide Syndrome.  It is also a great book, if I do say so myself, and it can be purchased through the secure server on our web site www.buteykoworks.com
Buteyko Tip of the Season
With the start of a New Year, people often decide to fulfil their New Year's Resolutions.  These might be the same ones that you are recycling from last year and never quite got around to completing, or they might be brand new.  Whatever they are, remember that the body doesn't usually deal terribly well with shocks; instead it likes to go smoothly from one state to another.  So no matter what your resolution is, remember that babies learn to walk before they run for a very good reason, and maybe it is wise to follow this same strategy.  Let nose-breathing be your guide!
Better Breathing = Better Health
The Buteyko Works Team

Breathing is the foundation of life, and good breathing is the foundation of good health
Improve your health by improving your breathing with Buteyko


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