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March 21, 2020 4 min read

Whether you’re an elite athlete or simply want to focus on developing or improving your fitness, knowing that you have to dedicate your time and effort to a training regimen is a pretty widely known fact.

 

However, you might not have realized what an impact such a small detail can make to your performance. Even the smallest of details that your body does involuntarily—like breathing—can be such a game-changer.

 

In this article, we’re going to go through how impactful the effects of proper breathing are on your strength and performance—no matter if you’re an elite athlete or not. 

 

Focus on Your Breath

You might have invested a lot already on supplements, training tools, accessories, and time in training—however, a huge, key player in your strength and performance can be found at the most basic of levels.

 

Most of the time, we breathe involuntarily—it’s a necessary detail that keeps us alive. Unless we’re doing meditation, coming down from an anxiety attack or trying to our hold our breath, we normally don’t focus on it—or even pay attention to it at all. 

 

However, especially during exercise, the way you breathe can truly change the amount of energy you use and can engage your mental alertness while in action. It can also give a boost to overall performance.


Factors that Affect Breathing

Not only is a lack of attention to our breathing hurting our athletic performance, certain other factors can play a (negative) part, too. 


For example, walking or sitting with poor posture can limit the full extent of our breathing—as well as wearing restrictive clothing. 


Certain habits like poor diets (which can lead to cardiovascular problems) and smoking can also have a negative impact on breathing—as well as simply leading a stressful life. 


And finally, our  mainly sedentary lifestyle can limit our lung capacity, which leaves our diaphragm—the main breathing muscle—quite dormant during the day. Actually, our bodies have recently been accustomed nowadays to use our intercostal muscles for breathing (called “chest breathing”), which can limit our lung capacity.


Relearn How to Breathe

Funnier said than done—to be able to perform at your highest potential, you might actually have to “relearn” how to breathe—the right way!  


As we just mentioned, you’ll want to tap into diaphragm breathing rather than chest breathing—which can trigger the abdomen to expand. This sort of breathing is more beneficial for youralveoli, which are the tiny sacs in your lungs that fill with air. As you get more air into your lungs, this can then transfer oxygen to your red blood cells, which can lead to better energy production (and ultimately, better athletic performance). 

 

Poor breathing, on the other hand, can limit your endurance during exercise and decrease your endurance.  


Although certain tools can help you refocus and relearn your breathing, we’re going to go through a few methods you can try, today! 


Improve Your Breathing and Your Performance

To be able to transfer proper breathing to your athletic performance, we need to first practice proper breathing while at rest. 


Incorporating the proper breathing technique:The goal here is to try and take 10 or fewer breaths while at rest per minute. This limited number of breaths help increase the oxygen levels in your cells.  

  1. First, lie on your back with knees bent (or have a propped pillow underneath your knees) and head supported. One hand should be on your upper chest and the other just below your rib cage.
  2. When you’re ready, breathe in slowly through your nose. 
  3. Engage your core muscles and let them fall inward as you exhale out through your mouth.

Transferring Diaphragm Breathing to Exercise

If you feel like you’re ready to incorporate what you’ve learned with diaphragm breathing to your exercise or while in motion, there are a few things to remember. 


Focus on taking slow, strong breaths while exercising.Especially if you’re training with a consistent, endurance movement (like running) your breathing should fall into a pattern. 


Focus solely on this established pattern—not your body’s movement.Although some trainers tell you to breathe which each step or stroke, this can eventually become negative because if you increase your physical movement’s speed—then your breathing will go with it! This can possibly lead to hyperventilation and decrease performance because of limited oxygen. 


Never hold your breath. Especially if you’re lifting weights or doing a very strenuous movement, you might feel the need to hold your breath and focus on your strength. However, this can reduce blood flow to your brain, tissue and organs—which can actually damage your blood vessels. 


Incorporate Gymtech Pro.Our new collectionwill feature next-generation sportswear with EMS, as well as cutting-edge sensors. These sensors are designed to track  not only hydration level and heart rate, but also breathing rate, (frequency, BR), and tidal volume, which is the amount of air one breathes in with each normal breath.

 

Our tech will not only allow you to be able to track your breathing rate over time, but also get instant actionable data while working out. If you’re not breathing properly while training, you’ll get notified instantly. This will help increase performance dramatically.


90-day at-home trial. 100% refundable.

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