The fingertip work (practice)
The fingertip work was developed by Prof. Ilse Middendorf, as she was trying to find out how to allow the breathing to arise by itself without wilful tension. This work is based on the experience that pressure from or to the fingertips initiates breathing impulses.
Holding or pressing the small or ring fingers together stimulates the breathing in the lower space, the middle finger in the middle space, and the index finger and thumb in the upper space. Apart from certain breathing spaces the fingertip work also stimulates certain respiratory flows.
Hatha Yoga Breathing Photo Gallery
Comments regarding the following examples:
Starting with roughly 5 breaths of air, you can slowly increase the duration of the exercise, as otherwise the positive effects can quickly turn into the opposite. Straighten yourself up well whilst doing it; only in this way does the work have a clear effect in the horizontally bordering breathing spaces.
Bend the fingers that are not currently being used towards the palms; the effect on the allocated breathing space is then clearer.
Practice at best whilst standing or sitting, (in a wide seated position on the front third of the chair).
Thereby your hands are placed either at the height of the centre of the torso (between the end of the sternum and the navel), or in the wide seated position lay where the lower arms are loosely resting on the thighs.