Plucking Your Strings

When we think about Qigong or Breathwork, we often focus on the internal benefits we derive from the induction of vital energy, or qi, caused by the combination of movement, breathing, and focused intention. But there is an additional benefit from doing Qigong or related Dynamic Energy Exercise that we may forget about or not even be aware of.

In Classical Chinese Medicine, we recognize three levels of qi: wei qi, ying qi, and yuan qi. The most superficial of these is our wei qi (pronounced “way chee”), or “guardian qi”, which helps protect us from external pathogens. Wei qi includes not only our immune system, but also our mental and emotional resilience.

You see, “pathogens” or “pathogenic factors” refer to things like bacteria and viruses (a lot of people get a cold in winter), infectious agents or situations (remember COVID anyone?), and even dramatic changes in the weather which can impact folks in any season. They also refer to negative emotional content stemming from uncomfortable or stressful environments or situations, and/or from negative people or unpleasant interactions – in other words, psycho-emotional factors that can reduce the robustness of our immune system.

Your wei qi is akin to your armor. Anything you can do to enhance it is important to maintaining your health AND longevity. When you can set up a strong energetic barrier or bubble around you, you feel safer and more confident. Your wei qi is also associated with involuntary, autonomic processes, such as your heart rate, sweating, and even the peristaltic activity within your digestive system. Pretty important stuff!

One of the fundamental Qigong practices I teach is to “build your bubble” using breathing and intention to build the strength of the wei qi. This powerful practice includes two components that I teach in my course, “Breathing & Qigong for Health and Energy“.

The Other Way to Build Wei Qi

We also build wei qi by exercising. The sinew channels, which include muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia, and skin (and the smooth muscles of the gut), are conduits of wei qi.

However, certain types of exercise are more effective than others at strengthening fascia, tendons, and ligaments.

The Daoist expression “Plucking the Strings” refers to the effective exercising of the sinews, especially through our practice of Qigong.

Over the centuries several Qigong forms, such as the Yi Jin Jing (Muscle-Tendon Changing Classic) and the Ba Duan Jin (Eight Pieces of Brocade), were developed to stretch and strengthen tendons, ligaments, and fascia, along with inducing or enhancing the flow of vital energy within the meridians.

Focusing on the tendons and ligaments is the real secret to building and retaining strength and flexibility, which in turn helps us retain our mobility, balance, and vital capacity.

The challenge is this: Much of the exercise we engage in is targeted at building our muscles – which is important, of course. But most people don’t do enough to build and maintain the strength of their tendons and ligaments. As a result, they become less flexible, things get tight, injuries begin to happen. Or they lose the ability to do simple things as their grip strength deteriorates (grip strength is a key marker of aging or, alternatively, relative youthfulness and longevity).

“Plucking the Strings” also infers a sense of play and enjoyment. Practicing Qigong is a fun, wonderful, fulfilling, and minimal impact way to stretch and strengthen without the potential risk of injury from other exercise modalities.

Don’t Get Out of Tune

When I was a child of about eight, my parents gave me my first real guitar. What an awesome gift! I played that thing every day. At first, I imitated popular songs on the radio and figured out the chords and melodies. Soon after, my parents paid for guitar lessons.

I studied classical guitar for about eight years, until I was 17. And I was good. However, I reached an inflection point. My instructor told me that, to get to the next level, I would have to put in even more time practicing and perform with greater frequency in recitals. At this time in my life, however, I was more interested in the high school sports I was playing, keeping up my grades while taking an aggressive course load, hanging out with friends, and beginning to date.

I just didn’t have that burning desire to become a concert guitarist. I came to the decision that I did not have the time to devote to this level of practice or training. I know my instructor was bummed, but he also understood.

So…I stopped taking lessons. Not only that – I also stopped playing, even for fun.

Once in a great while, I would take my guitar out of its case just to play a little. And every time, it would require extensive tuning because the strings would go slack due to the lack of plucking and strumming.

There are several morals to this sad story, but the key message for you, dear reader, is as follows:

Just as a guitar that is not played will gradually go out of tune…so will your body. AND your immune system. AND your vital capacity. So pluck your own strings on a regular basis!

I’ll have more to say on this in my next blog post. Until then, do your Qigong with a playful spirit. Pluck Those Strings!

You Can Do It!

Dr. Karen

Tap Into This Secret Source of Strength

One of the most exciting discoveries of the last 200 years is that
each of us has the ability to change our life by changing our

Our attitudes of mind, our typical ways of thinking, our way of
looking at our life and our world….each of these impacts us
every day, in ways both obvious and unseen.

We live and operate in the physical world. Yet physical force or
effort is the lowest form of energy. Mental and spiritual forces
release the higher form of energy.

Your inner world of mind and spirit helps to drive and determine
your outer world of circumstances and results. If there’s some
aspect of your life that you would like to change or improve,
look to your inner world first.

A great way to do this is to sit still and be quiet for a few
minutes each day. Meditate, pray, or simply relax and let your
thoughts roam for a bit.

Release your worries, relax, and quietly think about what you
would like to bring into your life. You can think broadly
over various areas of your life….or you can focus on a
particular area that is vexing you, and picture the changes
and new reality you would like to have appear in that area.

We are all seeking “peace, sweet peace” as that old Christian
hymn says. We intuitively crave and seek peace of mind, because
we intuitively know that a peaceful state of mind leads more
easily to health, happiness, abundance, and spiritual growth.

Many people equate peace of mind with some ultimate or end
state of being – something we all aspire to, but never quite
attain, given our busy lives, the pressures of responsibilities,
the never ending quest for more.

Here’s a little secret: the people who are the most peaceful
are the most powerful.

In your peace lies your power.

In his book, “As A Man Thinketh”, James Allen writes about
the strength that comes with serenity:

“Calmness of mind is one of the beautiful jewels of wisdom…
self-control is strength; right thought is mastery; calmness
is power.”

You want to get into a calm, peaceful, serene state of mind,
particularly in times of stress and strain.

But wait a minute, Karen. When I’m stressed and strained is
exactly when I find it most difficult to become calm and

Ah yes, I know. I’ve been there! Just thinking you SHOULD
be calm and serene is a lot easier than actually BECOMING
calm and serene.

There’s an old saying, or story actually, in Chi Kung. A
student asks the Chi Kung master how often should she practice
in order to make progress. The master tells her she should
practice every day for 15 minutes.

But I lead a very busy life including work and other
responsibilities, says the student. What if I don’t have time
to practice every day?

“Ah,” says the master, “At times when you are very busy and
don’t have time, you should practice 45 minutes every day!”

In other words, the less time you have to focus on yourself,
to take a time out and get peaceful….the more you need to
TAKE the time and gift yourself with a few minutes of

Here’s where integration of your mental, emotional and physical
powers comes in. Combining breathing and energy exercises
with specific types of visualization, affirmations and
positive emotions can help you to master your emotional
state and carve out a zone of calmness, even in the midst
of chaos.

When your inner and outer selves begin to operate together in
a more organized and synchronous way, then you’ve really
started tapping into significant power.

The strength and mastery of your peaceful state of mind is
like a healing balm for the situation. It helps bring order
and right results.

Remember this: When you are in a peaceful state of mind, you
are the master of the situation, no matter how negative it

I often use the Prayer of Serenity as my cue to re-orient
my own thinking, focus and energy back to a more peaceful
and calm state.

Here is a way of interpreting that famous prayer, providing
additional meaning which I find quite helpful when I am
facing a particularly tough day or situation:

“Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change”
(calmness is power);

“Change the things I can” (Self-control is strength);

“And the wisdom to know the difference” (right thought leads
to mastery).

In such mastery is your strength and power for good.

You Can Do It!


“Transform Body Mind and Spirit with Dynamic Energy Exercise!”

P.S. You can receive and benefit from even more breathing and energy
exercises and instruction, and deeper insights into the physical,
psychological and spiritual dimensions of abundant energy, health
and fitness – by signing up for my FREE monthly print newsletter,
the “Best Breathing Exercises Letter”.

In the next few issues, I will be exploring the fascinating
psychological and metaphysical background which informs and
contributes to the effectiveness of breathing and visualization.
And I will share more details on several of the most productive,
yet easy to learn, exercises that I have enjoyed over the years.

To input or update your mailing address info, go to

Copyright, Karen Van Ness, 2014

Release Your Inner Ghost or Goblin

Happy Halloween!

Have you scared anyone yet today? Have you bought the candy…put up any decorations? Snuck some candy?

Our son Miguel was laid low for two days with a stomach bug. Apparently it’s been making the rounds at school.

However, he made a miraculous recovery this morning and soldiered off to school, claiming “I feel better, Mommy”. I’m wondering whether his recovery and willingness to go to school has anything to do with the fact that tonight is Halloween?

Hmmm…..maybe I’m being too cynical.

I love candy!!!
I love candy!!!

I remember how much fun my brother, friends and I used to have on Halloween when we were kids. Donning the costume….racing from house to house….checking on our loot after we got home to see who got the most – and the best – candy.

I’ve always enjoyed horror films too. Halloween is a great excuse to bust out the old classics, as well as the newer classics, for some extended viewing.

Today, of course, Halloween has become a major holiday.

Some of our neighbors really go all out with decorations and lights. They spend as much time decorating for Halloween as they do for Christmas.

What’s the reason behind this Halloween fervor?

I think, in part, it’s because Halloween allows you to relive your childhood, and simply have fun and enjoy something. And you should never underestimate the importance of having fun.

All those “ghosts”, “goblins” and “zombies” cavorting about this time of year sure seem to have fun.

They’re not stressing about work, or mortgage payments, or long commutes.

Oh sure, they’re dead, or perhaps undead…but that doesn’t seem to get in the way of their having a good time.

It can be a challenge to work some simple “Have Fun” moments into your life.

Everyone is so busy, the days fly by and you never seem to get to the end of your to-do list.

This “busyness” crowds out the leisure time required for important things, like reading and study, meditating or praying, playing, creating. It crowds out your dreams, your ability to imagine life in the future as you would wish it to be.

It seems to me like we have embraced a modern equivalent of slavery. What an irony! We have more labor-saving options that ever…yet we place a premium on multi-tasking, being on the run, riveted to our electronic gadgets, not experiencing or enjoying the day as it goes flying by.

Historian Thomas Cahill has written about the connection between freedom and the Sabbath – God’s command to “rest on the seventh day”. Even if you are not a religious type, you can still benefit mightily from the practice of taking off one day a week and resting, re-creating, playing, thinking.

As Cahill puts it, “Leisure is the necessary ground of creativity, and [we as] free people are free to imitate the creativity of God.”

You need to take at least a few minutes for yourself, each and every day. Whether it’s to meditate, exercise, or read a good book…get together with a good friend and enjoy a few laughs…play with your kids or pets….or simply to sit quietly and breathe deeply, you’ll find this time to be invaluable.

If you feel like you are giving, giving, giving all day – giving to your job, giving to your family, giving to the world – giving some time to yourself will help refresh and replenish you.

Kicking loose and having some fun should be part of your “me time” too.

So enjoy your Halloween. Release your inner child. And don’t let any ghosts, goblins or zombies get ya.

You Can Do It!


“Best Breathing Exercises: Transform Body Mind and Spirit with Dynamic Energy Exercise!”

P.S. Stop stress in its tracks within minutes! Relieve tension naturally and easily with the exercises in the Secret Power of Dynamic Energy Exercise Course, Volume I: Invigorate and Rejuvenate. The first CD of the program guides you through a series of deceptively easy, gentle movements combined with proper, complete breathing and visualization. This powerhouse combination allows you to literally breathe your way through stress, tension, and worries – so you make the most of the “Me Time” you have carved out of your day.

For more information, or to pick up your own program CDs, click here.

Copyright, Karen Van Ness, 2013

Zombies Know: Focus On This If You’re Trying to Lose Weight

Hey, it’s almost Halloween – I couldn’t resist the zombie theme.

But before we talk about zombies, I have an important question for you:

What’s the most important number to focus on if you’re trying to lose weight?

You probably answered, “My weight, of course.”

Good answer. That IS an important number.

But your weight isn’t necessarily THE most important number. Many people underestimate their healthiest weight.

Plus, the main consideration is how you look after you’ve lost some fat and put on some muscle.

When they embark a weight loss program, most people think about losing flab in their waist and hips, because this can have the most dramatic impact on their appearance.

They want to lose the beer belly and the love handles. They want smoother curves. They want a trim waistline and hips.

Some even want to be able to see their abdominal muscles, a la Brad Pitt. (Although we don’t get asLady Zombie good a look at those abs in his latest movie, “World War Z”. I guess the zombies don’t care about what shape you’re in. They’ll eat any human.)

For a long time, doctors and other health experts would laugh at or ridicule this obsession with the midsection. They pushed the BMI, or body mass index, as the most important number to be concerned with.

The problem with the BMI is that naturally big people, people with lots of muscle, can actually have “bad” (too high) BMI’s. For example, Brad Pitt has a pretty high BMI because he has packed on some muscles over the years. But I think he looks pretty healthy, don’t you? (And the zombies chasing him apparently think so too).

Plus, I’ve known plenty of thin people who have great BMI’s, but actually have a fairly high body fat percentage because they never exercise.

The other issue with it: it’s so darn difficult to calculate.

So the BMI has fallen out of favor somewhat.

Guess what? Many doctors and health professionals have come around to our way of thinking. Wanting a trim waist is a worthy goal, after all.

Currently THE most important number is your WHR: your waist-to-hip ratio.

It turns out that your gut size, not your weight, appears to be the best measure of health risk.

It’s been known for some time that extra fat around the midsection is correlated with increased risk of heart attack. This is thought to occur primarily because this type of fat is concentrated around the internal organs.

However, recent studies have implicated a high WHR with increased risk of diabetes and high blood pressure.

So, if you are planning on losing weight, improving your fitness levels, and/or getting healthier — be mindful of the fact that extra fat around the midsection increases your risk for some of the most serious diseases.

Before I forget, here’s how to calculate your WHR:

Grab a tape measure and measure the circumference at the point where your waist is the smallest. This is usually just above belly button level. Then measure the circumference around your hips where they are the widest.

Next, divide your waist measurement by your hip measurement.

Here’s an example:
Waist measurement is 32″
Hip measurement is 40″
WHR = 32 divided by 40 = .80

So what does this number mean?

Well, the ratios at which increased risk for heart attack, diabetes and high blood pressure starts is 0.95 for men, and 0.80 for women. Higher ratios are worse. If you aren’t already, you want to get under these ratios.

Getting back to the vanity thing: some years ago I developed a program to help me bump up my metabolism in a safe, natural way.

I was trying to improve on the weight loss I had achieved through more “conventional” means. But I didn’t want to go on any of those metabolism boosters, which are basically products with a high dose of caffeine combined with some other stuff that may or may not have any real effect. Mainly they just jack you up so you can’t sleep….and you end up stuffing carbs down your throat in an effort to stave off the inevitable fatigue from not sleeping well…not to mention they also jack up your cortisol levels, which promotes weigh gain in all the wrong places.

Anyways, I wanted safe, natural, and something that wouldn’t involve having to spend hours and hours in the gym.

My refined approach became the heart of the “Fire Up Your Metabolism” Program, which I recently made available again as an Ebook (available at the Best Breathing Exercises website).

In the program, I emphasize deep breathing and dynamic exercises that concentrate on the torso muscles, including the abdominal, back and hip muscles.

Why? Three primary reasons:

(1) the focus of most people trying to lose weight is to get as lean a waistline as possible, for better appearance;

(2) the muscles of the torso are the largest in the body, so working these can have the greatest impact on your metabolism; and

(3) combining deep breathing with movements that focus on the core area improves appearance more dramatically through toning and strengthening these muscles, as well as improving posture and the health of the internal organs.

This last point is really critical.

It’s typically said in sports that, “When the legs go, the fighter / player is finished”. This is largely true.

But when it comes to competing, and winning, in the ultimate competition – your battle for health, energy and freedom from debilitation throughout your life – the most important area is your core. When the core goes, your vitality begins to dissipate.

This is a truth known throughout the ages, in both Western and Eastern health practices.

In ancient Greece, the ideal physique included a tight waist combined with broad shoulders and strong legs. This same ideal reappeared in the late 1800s and early 1900s in physical culture practices throughout the Western world.

In traditional Chinese medicine, prevention is paramount – and a key focus area for preventive medicine is specific exercises for the torso area.

You see, as you age, your stomach muscles and other support structures in your pelvic area can get weak and, basically, lazy. Years of bad posture from hunching over the computer or tablet and sitting or standing incorrectly, plus the tendency of most people to exercise less and less, leads to less support and tension in your core muscles. This in turn can lead to the development of even worse posture, chronic back and neck pain (and even headaches), and loss of continence (ever have to sprint suddenly for the bathroom, ladies?).

Good tone in your core muscles is also important for the health of your internal organs. It aids in digestive health and more efficient elimination. And, as I said above, we now know that improvements in the waist and hip area can help avoid increased risk for heart attacks, diabetes and high blood pressure — the three major scourges of modern living.

In other words, bending, flexing, stretching, tensing and tightening your core every day should be one of your key focus areas. This is not just a vanity thing (as in, I want a slimmer waist) – it’s truly a centerpiece of vibrant health!

So, while your current weight and goal weight are important numbers, be mindful of your waist-to-hip ratio, your WHR, as you plan and implement your weight loss or fitness program.

And if you’d like to kick start your efforts, get the “Fire Up Your Metabolism” Program.

You Can Do It!


“Best Breathing Exercises: Transform Body Mind and Spirit with Dynamic Energy Exercise!”

P.S. You control how young you look, feel and do. This is exciting stuff! To help you leverage this power, I’ve put together an excellent exercise and eating plan for you in the “Fire Up Your Metabolism” Program. The specific steps, recommendations and exercises I share with you will put you on the fast track to vibrant energy, fitness and health. And it’s easy to work it into your current schedule. Pick up your copy today at

Copyright, Karen Van Ness, 2013

Sixty Really Is the New Forty (Lessons from Chuck Norris)

Have I ever told you about the time I met Chuck Norris?

Actually, I didn’t just meet him….I was his bodyguard.

What Karen, you worked as a bodyguard?

Well, not exactly. I did provide bodyguard services a few times to celebrities. Chuck Norris is the only one I can remember (the others were minor celebs who flashed bright, then disappeared).

Chuck Norris was coming into town to promote one of his new movies. I forget the name of the movie. It was the one with the little kid. Supposed to be part action, part comedy. It wasn’t very good. Nevertheless, he had to promote it.

Now, if you’re a Chuck Norris fan, don’t get your pants in a bundle! I am a fan too, especially ofChuck Norris_InvasionUSA early Chuck: the “Lone Wolf McQuade” movies, the “Delta Force” series, “Missing in Action”, “Invasion USA” (which had a really good bad guy – like an albino with no eyebrows – he just looked creepy). Chuck couldn’t act well. But he pulled it off because you just sort of liked the guy.

I’ve also always admired his spinning back kick. Beautiful AND effective. Especially when he’s wearing his cowboy boots.

Anyways, Chuck was coming into town to promote this movie and the promoters wanted to ensure he had plenty of protection. My Tae Kwon Do instructor somehow got the inside track into providing “bodyguard” services. He asked several of us black belts, who were also instructors, to accompany him.

We weren’t really bodyguards, we were more like an extra escort to help out. But hey, it was a chance to meet Chuck Norris! And say we were his bodyguards! What self-respecting black belt wouldn’t jump on that?

So, there we were outside the theater, in position and waiting for Chuck to arrive. The crowds were cordoned off behind barriers. It was kind of exciting, lots of energy, lots of anticipation. We were trying to be cool, of course, like we had actually done this “bodyguard thang” before.

Finally, Chuck’s car pulled up. He got out. I remember my first impression was, “He’s so LITTLE!”

Chuck is not a tall guy, maybe 5’6”. With his cowboy boots on, he’s a little taller. His build was slight too.

My second impression was, “He seems older than I expected”.

I have to admit, at first I was a little disappointed. Here’s this larger than life action hero, and….he’s way smaller than me. (I’m 5’10”, and I’ve never in my life been described as having a “slight” build.) And he’s older than I expected. (Chuck was in the Air Force and ran his own martial arts schools for years before he broke into acting. By this time, he was already well into his 40s. Yikes, did I really say that was “old”?)

However, I quickly recovered because Chuck was also…in great shape! Here was a guy who worked out every day – and I mean, a real workout every day. You could tell. He was fit, he was hard, and he carried himself with great confidence.

I was also won over by his attitude toward us. Here we stood, a bunch of so-called bodyguards who were really just there so we could meet him. But he walked right up to us, smiled and shook our hands, and thanked us for coming. Then he went right over to work the crowd.

I learned a useful lesson that evening. Here was a guy who was short, was “old” – well into his 40’s – and couldn’t act very well. Yet he was producing movie hit after movie hit – action movies, to boot! And he did all of his own fighting and many of his own stunts.

Chuck had obviously made the commitment to get into, and stay in, great shape. And he was committed to his career. He wasn’t letting anyone tell him he was “too old” to do action movies, or crisp fight scenes, or dangerous stunts.

I was in my 30s at this time. But this glimpse into the possible – that you don’t have to give into chronological age as a determinant of what you can or should do, or how much energy you should have, or how you should look or feel – or even the activities you engage in – was quite meaningful.

More recently, we’ve seen Diana Nyad finally accomplish one of her long-lasting goals: to swim from Cuba to Florida.

When I heard she had finally achieved this goal – a 110 mile swim through shark infested waters – I had to read more about it. I mean, I remember being a kid when she first gained fame for attempting to – and often successfully completing – incredible long-distance swimming feats.

We hadn’t heard much about her in recent years. I didn’t even know she was still swimming.

Here’s the really interesting part. Diana has attempted this Cuba to Florida swim several times in the past, at much younger ages. She never could complete it.

This time, she said she knew she would make it. She had confidence from having attempted it before and her experiences with long swims.

More importantly, Diana said she knew she would make it because she felt fitter than ever – at 64! In fact, she felt better attempting this swimming feat at 64 than she did at 40, or even 30.

How cool is that?!

So you see, sixty really IS the new forty. That is not just a cliché.

Often, as people get older, they tend to become less active. This is partly due to life changes, such as increasing responsibilities at work, which can lead to more stress and time required on the job. Getting married or co-habiting and having kids puts additional time sucks on your day. You just don’t have the same free time you did when you were young.

More insidiously, many people begin to shy away from more intense or difficult activities because they are “too old” for it, or they have less energy to get in shape.

But you shouldn’t.

You truly are as young as you feel.

If Chuck Norris can continue to make action movies and TV shows well into his 60’s….and if Diana Nyad can finally accomplish one of her life-long extreme swimming goals at age 60….then you and I can surely commit to a healthy lifestyle including proper exercise and activity every day.

So push yourself to do something today, even if it’s as simple as doing some deep breathing, a few pushups and situps, and some walking. Even a little each day can benefit you. And it can “sneak up” on you too. A little bit today feels so good, you’ll want to do more tomorrow.

Before you know it, your new healthy activity will snowball into your own health and fitness program. One you follow consistently, just like Chuck.

One that will enable you to pursue that big bold goal you may have put aside, just like Diana.

You Can Do It!


“Best Breathing Exercises: Transform Body Mind and Spirit with Dynamic Energy Exercise!”

P.S. You control how young you look, feel and do. This is exciting stuff! To help you leverage this power, I’ve put together an excellent exercise and eating plan for you in the “Fire Up Your Metabolism” Program. The specific steps, recommendations and exercises I share with you will put you on the fast track to vibrant energy, fitness and health. And it’s easy to work it into your current schedule. Pick up your copy today at

Copyright, Karen Van Ness, 2013

Staying Younger Ain’t So Hard

In your previous tip, I discussed the importance of muscle mass in
determining your longevity and quality of life.

If you have good muscle mass, it’s an indication of a healthy
metabolism and enhanced anabolic capabilities to build up your body,
better handle stress, and rapidly and efficiently repair and rebuild
tissue – which means slower aging.

Building up your body’s anabolic capabilities and building up your
strength – through deep breathing, proper exercise, good nutrition,
and adequate rest – is one of the two major factors you control.

The other factor is mental: staying curious, always learning and
doing new things, and being enthusiastic. In other words, keeping
your inner child awake and alive, rather than buried under adult
pressures and responsibilities.

Recently, some amazing studies have been done which shed even
more light on the exercise and aging equation. These studies
indicate that it doesn’t take much, in terms of time or effort,
to slow the aging process and extend your life.

As an example, in 2009, the American College of Medicine and the
American Heart Association conducted a study on the relationship
between a walking-based exercise program and life expectancy.

Subjects who engaged in a program of moderate walking (30 minutes
a day, five days a week) found their risk of death decreased by
27 percent. In addition, the study found a significant reduction
in deaths from heart disease, as well as a somewhat lower
reduction in deaths from cancer.

Here’s another one for you: the famous Framingham Heart Study,
which has been in progress since 1948, tracked a group of adults
over decades to try to identify the common factors associated with
cardiovascular disease.

Among their findings was a distinct correlation between decreased
respiratory capacity and increased mortality.

In other words, if you stop moving, stop pushing yourself, stop
enhancing your breathing abilities and capacity…you can expect
to age quicker. AND you’ll be more likely to succumb to heart
disease or the other dis-eases of our time which are tied so
closely to lifestyle factors.

So….what does this mean to you?

Well, from my point of view, it’s pretty simple. Starting (or
maintaining) a well-rounded exercise program is one of the
smartest things you can do, if you are interested in living
longer AND having more life in those years.

Aerobic exercise is important for your heart and breathing
capacity. Resistance exercise is important for building muscle
mass and healthy bones that resist osteoporosis. Alternating
these two types of exercise on a daily basis is a great way to
fit exercise into your routine while providing some variety in
your training.

JUst as importantly: Breathing coupled with specific types of
movement and stretching is ideal for quickly and enjoyably
increasing your lung power and vital capacity, as well your
resistance to stress.

Greater lung power and capacity equals health and longevity!

This is one of the reasons I emphasize breathing and energy
exercises in my own health and fitness regimen, and recommend
it so heartily to you.

It’s an approach that is time-tested and proven.

In both Eastern and Western traditions, breathing in tandem
with specific types of exercise were considered a sure path to
enhanced health, wellness, and personal power. The Indians
and Chinese were to on this centuries ago. As were the ancient

To them, exercise was a tool used to harness even greater
potential than simply physical skills and benefits. If designed
properly, it can also be used to integrate your mind, body and
spirit, resulting in enhanced physical capabilities and health,
as well as a greater ability to focus on and enjoy your work
and your daily life.

You Can Do It!

Karen Van Ness

“Best Breathing Exercises: Transform Body Mind and Spirit with
Dynamic Energy Exercise!”

P.S. The programs available at the Best Breathing Exercises
website will help you improve your breathing, your fitness and
your health — as well as bust through any limitations that 
current conditions or challenges may be placing on your life.
Visit to learn more.
Copyright, Karen Van Ness, 2011