As the summer comes to a close and we’ve all returned to work after the summer holidays, we find ourselves back to the stresses and strains of everyday life. This is the ideal time to book in for a Breathing MOT.

Is this you?

You’re a busy parent.

You work long hours.

You commute into work regularly during the week but find you’re constantly juggling the needs of being a parent with the demands of your job.

Trying to be everything to everyone leaves you feeling high levels of stress most of the time.

All of these factors mean you spend much of your time in a flight or fight mode.

Nothing related to breathing, right?!

Maybe… but maybe not!

Why a Breathing MOT might be for you…

What we often find is that people who function primarily in a ‘fight or flight’ state, often present with poor breathing. The ‘fight or flight’ mode actually refers to activation of a certain branch of our autonomic nervous system (the sympathetic branch) which is responsible for preparing our body for action and escaping danger. Once activated, our body typically responds by increasing our heart rate and breathing rate amongst other things. Repetitive or constant activation of the sympathetic nervous system can mean people are more susceptible to developing poor breathing habits, and this is certainly something we see every day in clinic – for example, breathing through the mouth rather than the nose, and breathing from the upper chest rather than practicing breathing lower down (at the diaphragm).

We’re never taught how to breathe. It just happens… but sometimes a combination of external factors means the way we breathe goes awry. Sometimes people are able to notice this, and sometimes they aren’t.

But how do you know for sure?

We have recently launched a new service called “The Breathing MOT” that is specifically designed to analyse the way you are breathing:

What muscles are you using?

Where is the movement occurring?

How is your rib cage moving?

Is your diaphragm working in partnership with your core and pelvic floor muscles?

We will delve in to all these important aspects of your breathing mechanics as well as discuss your goals – do you have an event you are training for? Are you hoping to get fitter so you can walk further with your dog?

How does our breathing MOT service work?

Anyone can book a Breathing MOT. You do not need a referral.

You will be thoroughly assessed by one of our specialist respiratory physiotherapists who will be able to ascertain whether you would benefit from help with optimising your breathing or if you need any additional support. We work closely with many of the top healthcare professionals in London and will direct you to most appropriate route of care – whether that is recommending you see respiratory consultant, cardiac consultant, speech and language therapist, musculoskeletal physiotherapist, or even an appointment with your GP.

At the end of your appointment, we will present your results of your Breathing MOT to you, as well as provide you with a plan for future care or onward referral  if needed.

Why would breathing properly benefit me?

  • Parasympathetic Nervous System: Optimal and mindful breathing activates the “rest and digest” (parasympathetic) branch of the nervous system, putting your body in a state of relaxation, and benefiting functions such as digestion, and slowing your heart and breathing rate.
  • Cognitive Clarity: Oxygen is vital for brain health and cognitive function. Proper breathing via the nose and lower chest provides your brain with the oxygen it needs, enhancing mental clarity, focus, and cognitive performance.
  • Athletic Performance: Optimal breathing techniques at rest and during exercise will enhance oxygen delivery to muscles, increasing endurance and improving overall athletic performance.
  • Emotional Wellbeing: Breathing correctly can help regulate your emotions, promote emotional well-being and improve your sleep. It allows you to pause, reflect, and respond thoughtfully to situations, rather than reacting impulsively.

Have you had your breathing checked by a respiratory physiotherapist to ensure it’s optimal?

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