1. Stammis

    Stammis Contributing Member

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    what does this mean?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Stammis, May 3, 2016.

    What does it mean when your write: He took a slow breath?

    In what situation do you take a slow breath? How do you take a slow breath?

    - sorry, I can't wrap my head around this :p
     
  2. Wayjor Frippery

    Wayjor Frippery Contributing Member Contributor

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    Where did you read it and what was the context?

    I imagine it means he breathed in slowly.
     
  3. Stammis

    Stammis Contributing Member

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    Whenever I read a book I write down sentences and words that I think is useful, but I didn't write down the context so I don't know.

    Why would the author mention that he breathe in slowly, is what I'd like to know. What's the significance?
     
  4. Midge23

    Midge23 Member

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    One breathing technique used to prepare for a stressful, perhaps dangerous situation, is to breath in for 4 seconds, then out for 4 seconds.

    It slows the heart rate and can calm the mind.

    An author might use the phrase to show a character readying themselves, to show that they are in control and know what they are doing.

    Just a thought.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2016
  5. Wayjor Frippery

    Wayjor Frippery Contributing Member Contributor

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    I have no idea, but imagine, for example, that you're nervous — so nervous you're shaking — and you want to calm down. You take a slow breath, right?
     
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  6. Stammis

    Stammis Contributing Member

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    I guess you are right. Somehow the term taking a slow breath was hard getting my head wrapped around.
     
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  7. zoupskim

    zoupskim Contributing Member Contributor

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    Iinnhaallee... Exhaaallee.
     
  8. KhalieLa

    KhalieLa It's not a lie, it's fiction. Contributor

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    When hunting I pay attention to my breathing right before I shoot. I want my bow to be as still as possible when I loose the arrow, so I breath in slowing and release with the exhale. I don't know if anyone else does this, but it's how my parents taught me and what I taught my kids.
     
  9. zoupskim

    zoupskim Contributing Member Contributor

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    Marry me, goddess.
     
  10. KhalieLa

    KhalieLa It's not a lie, it's fiction. Contributor

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    You might want to reconsider; I have teenagers.
     
  11. Inks

    Inks Contributing Member

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    Everyone in this thread is now aware of their own breathing.... and how their tongue suddenly doesn't sit well in their mouths.

    Seriously though, probably just awkward wording for the sake of being dramatic. Would certainly be the inhale portion that was slow, but meh...
     
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  12. doggiedude

    doggiedude Contributing Member Contributor

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    I dare you to not think of a purple elephant.

    Controlled breathing is used in all sorts of athletics. The concept shouldn't be difficult to understand but the wording could be better.
    I used to have all sort's of problems holding my breath during rifle competitions. I had to learn to exhale slowly as I was pulling the trigger.
     
  13. DeadMoon

    DeadMoon Contributing Member Contributor

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    I try to slow my breath when I meditate. I have not practiced in a while but still, slow breath.
     
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  14. Sack-a-Doo!

    Sack-a-Doo! Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't know about anyone else, but I do this if I'm facing something I'd rather not do, but have to.
     
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  15. Stammis

    Stammis Contributing Member

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    I don't know, what's the difference between a 'slow breath' and a 'sigh' then?
     
  16. Wayjor Frippery

    Wayjor Frippery Contributing Member Contributor

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    A slow breath is what's been said above.

    Here is a link to the Oxford English dictionary and their definition of sigh.

    Dictionaries are writers' friends. They will always love you.
     
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  17. Sack-a-Doo!

    Sack-a-Doo! Contributing Member Contributor

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    A slow breath is an intake of air; a sigh is an exhale.

    Of course, a slow breath might also include doing both an inhale and an exhale, but slowly.

    Come to think of it, you'd have to be there. Perhaps you could hang out somewhere where people are troubled and just... watch.
     
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  18. Oscar Leigh

    Oscar Leigh Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't see what's wrong with wording. It's a slow breath. It's literal. There's not much to be confused about.
     
  19. doggiedude

    doggiedude Contributing Member Contributor

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    I was thinking along the lines of
    He slowly inhaled and concentrated on his target.
    or
    She exhaled at controlled measured pace trying to keep her anger from boiling over at that fucking asshole. What was he thinking? That stupid piece of shit. She tried again... inhaling slowly, containing her rage.
     
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  20. Oscar Leigh

    Oscar Leigh Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't see why that's better though.
     
  21. Raven484

    Raven484 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think of taking a slow breath as being a conscience decision to slow your breathing to calm yourself. When I shoot pool for example, I was taught to always take a slow breath before I shot so my hands don't shake.
    A sigh I think of more as a response to something that I don't like or is irritating me. Its more subliminal than a conscience effort.
     
  22. PBrady

    PBrady Active Member

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    On its own I read it as implying that the protagonist was using the pause given by the action of a slow breath to consider the next thing they were going to say or do. It gives the impression that some decision and thought has gone into what ever follows next.
     
  23. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    Breath in. Sigh out.
     
  24. MichaelP

    MichaelP Banned

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    He inhaled not quickly.

    :meh:
     

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