Deep Breathing Exercises
Place one hand on your stomach and the other hand on the upper chest and see whether your normal breathing is just making the upper chest move, or if it includes movement around the lower ribs. Start to focus on your breathing and try to ensure that there is some movement at the lower ribs and into the stomach.
Practice breathing In through the nose and out through the mouth. Then breathe in through the nose for a count of 4 and out through the mouth for a count of 8. If this is not manageable to start with, reduce to a count of 2 in and a count of 4 out, and then gradually increase the count. The idea is to completely fill up and then completely empty the lungs.
Slowly increase the count, working up to a count of 8 for inhalation and exhaling for a count of 16. Continue this exercise for about 5 minutes.
When our posture is slouched or we are muscle guarding, it is nearly impossible to get adequate rib expansion to be able to breathe deeply. Practice drawing the shoulders back on inhalation and then relaxing the shoulders on exhalation.
Place hands across the lower ribcage, with fingers pointing towards the midline and touching.Take a deep breath in and try to draw enough breath in that the fingertips separate due to rib expansion.. By working on the above exercises, try to gradually improve so that the fingers move further away from each other ie. the rib expansion is greater.