Improving the Breathing Techniques of Weekend Warriors Athletes and Youth Athletes
This is not about bad Breath lol!
Breathing is easy we do it every day, but how you breath and the quality of those breaths are extremely important. Everyone should learn how to breathe more effectively, it will give you the edge you are looking for to improve your performance, in the following ways:
There are several techniques that can be used to train your lungs and diaphragm to work more effectively, by increasing the lungs capacity which will help increase the amount of oxygen that is drawn into the lungs and strengthen the diaphragm. As an athlete, I would do a self-audit once a year always trying to see what I could do to improve my performance from year to year. I realized that my breathing was the one thing that was an issue and seemed to not improve as I played until later in the season and my endurance was below average. So I thought about what sport was dependent on developing endurance, so I started researching distance runners and I found that there was breathing exercise that some of the top runners would do to improve their lung capacity.
The exercise that I used was what I coined it as the 5-10 exercise... this is where you breathe on a rhythm for 10 breaths and you hold each breath for 5 sec (depending on your cardiovascular fitness level). For each breath, you should fill every part of your lungs until you cannot inhale anymore. This will increase the capacity of your lungs by expanding them and strengthening the diaphragm the muscle at the bottom of the chest cavity that when contracts when you inhale to increase the size of the chest cavity to allow for the lungs to expand without restriction. Then you exhale blowing all of the air out of your lungs until your lungs are empty. This exercise also helped calm my nerves before competition, and I also noticed along with improving my rate of perceived exertion.
The other techniques that I am going to mention are:
Just as a sidebar I wanted to mention improving your Thoracic mobility and flexibility which will also improve your breathing and lung capacity. Check out my youtube video the three exercises that I use to improve Thoracic mobility.
Like running, lifting, hitting, or throwing breathing is a skill that can be developed and improved with consistent work and a plan of action. So take the time to breathe it will take your life and your performance to the next level! I guarantee it!