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  • Writer's pictureEduardo Picasso

The lungs and Visceral Osteopathy (and the importance of physical exercise - Part 2 -)


The lungs are located inside the chest cavity, on both sides of the heart. The thoracic cavity is bounded anteriorly by the sternum, laterally by the ribs, and posteriorly by the vertebral column. At rest, the volume of air that enters the lung during inspiration is called the tidal volume and is 500 cm³ (half a liter), and the respiratory rate is 12 cycles per minute. About 11,000 liters of air per day enter the lungs, of which less than 5% enters the bloodstream. Apart from the heart, the lungs are the only organs through which all blood passes. They are connected to the structures that surround them through a fibrous membrane that surrounds them, similar to a cloth (the pleura). We all have minor pleural adhesions (loss of mobility in it, areas where "the fabric is wrinkled"). The causes of these adhesions and/or fixations can be: SURGICAL: Adhesions occur after thoracic surgery, caused by the healing process itself. These forces generated by the scar are transmitted throughout the body system through connective tissue. INFECTIONS: The lung is a frequent site in which microorganisms "attack" the human body (these infectious processes generate adhesions). Each infection leaves a scar in the tissue (parenchyma) that alters the pleuro-pulmonary mobility in general. HOW CAN WE IMPROVE CHEST MOBILITY? It is beneficial to practice relaxation and/or stretching techniques: movements in which the body is tilted to the side, flexion, extension, and rotation movements of the chest, arms, etc. (Yoga, Pilates, stretching, physical exercise in general). If breathing exercises are added to these techniques that improve flexibility and movement, the ideal combination is produced so that the chest is as free as possible.

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