Proper breathing during exercise can significantly improve its effectiveness, while wrong breathing can undermine all your efforts. You probably know that it is very important to breathe properly during exercise, but often most of us do not why it is so important. That’s why further in this article we will talk how and why you should breathe properly during exercise.
Breathing is so natural for us to process, that most often we do not even notice how we breathe. It becomes more important during training because if you learn to control your breathing, you can significantly ease the load on the cardiovascular and respiratory systems and increase the effectiveness of the training process.
The process of respiration is carried out through the diaphragm - the muscle that is in the solar plexus, just under the ribs. The diaphragm is almost always involved in the inhalation and exhalation breathe. Have to be said, that breathe differ on the type of exercise you are doing.
Exercises for developing flexibility, such as tilt, swivel, rotate the torso, swing, circular movements with arms and legs are used for the warm-up process. During these exercises, inhale in a position promoting the expansion of the chest, and exhalation when it shrinks.
Let’s take for example bend forward exercise. You have to inhale when the body is in a straight position, arms down and slightly back. It was proved that name, such a posture helps to fill the lungs with big quantity of air. On the other hand, have to exhale when leaning forward: chest and abdominal organs are compressed at this point, which helps more complete displacement of the air.
Breath Technique during Strength Exercises
During these exercises, breath technique hardly depends on the tension of the muscles. Expiration is recommended to be done in the moment of maximum muscle force, while inhalation in the moment of minimal muscle force.
For example, if you lift your feet up from lying position, then inhale while lifting the legs and exhale - when lowering them down, when the pressure on the abdominal muscles is higher.
The main rule in case of strength exercises is do not hold your breath! Holding breath, especially during the most intense phase of the exercise can cause a brief loss of consciousness due to oxygen starvation of the brain. In addition, due to the delay of breathing can significantly increase blood pressure.
Must Read: How to Breathe Properly During the Training?
Right Breath During Push-ups Exercises
Since push-ups are one of the most effective and common exercises used by bodybuilders, we will talk further the breath specific during its execution. When performing push-ups, exhalation should take place during the most difficult part, namely the moment when muscles are tense to the maximum.
Breathing technique looks this way: inhale when a move down, exhale when you lift your body. Therefore, push-ups have to be done this way:
-Take the starting position;
-Inhale and lower your body until you reach the pool with your chest.
-Lift your body while exhaling.
And so one. Keep in mind that breathing should be systematic, in rhythm.
One of the most common mistakes allowed by many bodybuilders is to hold the breath. As we mentioned, it is dangerous, as it leads to weakness or even short-term loss of orientation and consciousness.
Why is this technique so popular among bodybuilder? The answer is that when inhaling the load on the cardiovascular system increases, as blood and intra-abdominal pressure rise. If we add to this stress caused by exercise, and we get a worsening picture. Also on the exhale is much easier to concentrate your effort.
Summarising, we can say that proper breathing is an essential element of quality push-ups. Despite at the beginning, it may seem uncomfortable, and you will not be able to always follow the rhythm, after a while, you get used to it. You have to understand only using this breathe technique you will reach your goal, and will keep your body away from any injury.
Must Read: Push-ups For Building Muscle
Right Breath During Pull-ups Exercises
Another effective exercise on which we have to pay big attention is pull up. Along with other technical details that every bodybuilder has to be aware of, right breathing plays a big role too. Respiration is responsible for the flow of air in all part of our body, not just the muscles, but in the heart, brain, and other organs.
Wrong breathing or delay could lead to undesirable results in the form of blood pressure rose or worse loss of consciousness during the exercise. You have to control your breath in the process of working your muscles if you want to make your training as effective as possible.
So, let’s talk step by step breath technique when doing pull-ups.
-Take the position under the horizontal bar, grab the bar and hang on it, bending your knee;
-Exhale and then begin to pull up, while taking a deep breath. Inhale is required to get your chest expanded, while blades are brought together, which will make pulling more efficient;
-Reaching the highest point, begin to lower on the same path as exhalation.
A great advice would be to always keep track of your breath. Check yourself if you do not hold your breath once again, or you make unnecessary short breaths. This will help you to correct them and breath properly next time you do pull-ups.
Must Read: How to Learn To Do One Arm Pull-ups?
In case you are training with free weights than you have to exhale when you lift, push or pull weights away from the floor. Inhale when you bring weights to the starting position.
Sit-ups exercises also require a specific method of breathing while performing. Namely, you have to exhale when you lift your body up off the floor and inhale when you are lying back. During sit-ups, you have to follow a slow and controlled breathing, and in no case hold it.
Proper Breath Technique During Aerobic Exercises
During exercise like walking, jogging, cycling, swimming, are particularly important to breathe, because the body's need for oxygen increases several times. That's why when running have the body’s motion rhythm have to be agreed with breathing rate.
Irregular, or too fast breathing breaks the running rhythm, worsen coordination, and do not ensure the lungs with sufficient oxygen. To be more clear, let’s say that for a slow run you have to inhale/exhale every 3-4 steps. Fast running requires to inhale/exhale very every 1-2 steps you take.
Also, there are differences when you run fast for short distances. The oxygen demand, in this case, is so great that it can not be satisfied by even the most sophisticated breath. Namely, in this case, the body takes all necessary oxygen once you get to the end.
When swimming, breath largely depends on the type of swimming. In case of backstroke swimming technique, you can take the breath only when you raise the head above the water. In case of crawl swimming technique, you can inhale at the end of the stroke, when the face is turned to the side and your mouth is above water. In other phases of swimming, you can exhale only in water.
When performing aerobic exercises try to breathe evenly and deeply, focusing on the breath. The more complete the exhalation, the greater will be the breath and lung ventilation. However, it is not the case to exaggerate. Be aware of the fact that excessively deep breathing may have negative effects on your body.
There have been done many pieces of research that have shown that at moderate load is advisable to breathe so that the oxygen volume was 25-40% of lung capacity, and during high load, it was 40-70%. It may seem hard to follow namely this percent, but you have to try at least to follow it approximately. Moreover, if you practice correctly, you will be able to do it over time with no problem. It is just a matter of practice.
Additionally, always try to breathe through the nose while exercising. Firstly, the air inhaled through the nose is clean of microorganisms, thus you minimize the chances to get any infections. Secondly, the air-breathing through the nose is warmed up until it gets to the lung. this is especially important if you train outside, on cold weather.
As you see, right breathing is very important for building muscle mass and for keeping your body healthy. It would be great if you will follow the specific of respiration during each type of exercise. But, most important is do not hold your breath while training. Keep this in mind and never admit this mistake!