There is wonderful potential for refinement of the relationship breath and movement. One concept that opens up endless potential for refined practice is to place movement within the breath. Breath becomes a sheath, a kind of wrapping in which movement takes place. To demonstrate the idea we will use the simple posture that has brought us this far – lyign on the back, feet standing and the focus of movement is in the arms.
When we begin to inhale there is still no movement in the arms – there is only breath. Then movement begins in the arms (while breathing, of course, continues). Then movement ends but breath continues – we are still taking in air. Then the inhale is completed. The return journey is similar – breath begins before movement and ends after it.
You may notice that practicing in this way creates a space of physical stillness. This can be a great opportunity to place all your attention on the breath, to observer the qualities of the breath and to pay attention to the transitions between inhaling and exhaling.
Consequently, the time during which there is movement is shorter. If, for example, an inhale lasts for 6 seconds, then movement will now be 4 seconds because 1 second is spent in stillness when movement begins and 1 second when movement ends. This means that we may need to move faster then before – we have less time to execute the same range of movement.
Try it and see what happens 🙂