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Thursday, November 29, 2012
Nov 29, 2012
Sex and Science
Benefits of Breathing
It’s the most stressful time of the year—the holidays. And though you may have already shopped Lifestyle Mirror’s exclusive presents and extensive gift guides, you’re probably still finding yourself a little short of breath (and quite exhausted). It’s no secret that fitness experts and health professionals recommend exercise to alleviate stress, usually citing practices like yoga and pilates, which are extremely centered on breathing and meditation.
We know what you’re thinking—you’re not jumping on board the spiritual, hippy-dippy train. After all, it’s a commute usually overcrowded with soccer moms and trendy, twenty-something girls. But research suggests that Buddha might give you more bang in the bedroom.
Pamela Madsen, a writer for Psychology Today, suggests that, “succesful meditation and successful sex all start with the same three key entry points.” She lists these as:
Connecting to the breath.
If you find yourself at odds with Madsen’s words, we have some upsetting news for you: You’re doing it wrong. And the growing “slow sex” or “organic orgasm” movement has the research to prove it. One such expert, Gemma Obrien, discovered that the brain functions nearly identically during orgasm and meditation, citing “diminution of self-awareness” and “alterations in bodily perception.”
Scientific American explains, “orgasm and meditation dissolve the sense of physical boundary, but the activation patterns are distinct.” When watching brain functions during orgasm and meditation, the right hemisphere lights up intensely.
Controlling your breath is often the key to letting go—which paves the way for a more spiritual experience (or a more ecstatic orgasm). But breathing techniques aren’t so easy to master, especially when you’re in the heat of the moment.
So there’s the chance that enrolling in yoga classes (try Equinox) or meditation lessons (try Deepak Chopra’s DVDs) might very well be the best gift you can give her—and yourself—this holiday.
Because let’s be honest, when has she ever complained about taking it slow? —Phillip Picardi (@pfpicardi)