Straightjacket breathing

In this exercise, I replicate a straitjacket effect by embracing myself and intentionally limiting my lung expansion. The exercise is meant to maintain ribcage elasticity.

How I exercise ‘straitjacket breathing’


  • I stand or sit comfortably with a straight back, close my eyes, and keep my tongue and jaw relaxed.
  • Hug myself, with my arms crossed and my palms resting on the lower part of my shoulder.
  • Reset my breathing if needed.
  • Use 3-part breathing exclusively through my nose.


  1. Inhale fully, in 3 parts, against my arm’s resistance.
  2. Exhale deeply in 3 parts while turning my body from side to side.
  3. Hold my breath, until I reach ‘air-hunger start.’
  4. Repeat for a few rounds.

With my hands half-circling my upper body, the self-hugging creates resistance, making it challenging to inflate my chest cavity fully. This resistance serves to strengthen my ribcage and chest breathing muscles as well as maintain ribcage flexibility. When exhaling, I deflate deeply using my abdominal muscles.