Proper breathing during exercises is important as it helps supply oxygen to your muscles and heart. Whether you’re doing running, swimming or yoga, you are required to inhale and exhale properly. If you are having difficulty talking after running, it is a clear indication that you are not breathing properly. While yoga can help you improve your breathing techniques, there are three steps you shouldn’t miss in any breathing exercise.
Step 1: Know your force and relax period.
Each exercise has a force and relax period which you have to be familiar with so that you know the breathing pattern you should use. To make the discussion easier, we will categorize the exercises to push and pull.
Examples of pull exercises are sit-up, ab crunch, hammer curl and other exercises that target the butt, hamstrings, back and biceps. Push exercises focus on the quads, outer thigh, chest, shoulder and triceps such as shoulder press, push-up and bench jump.
Step 2: Know when to exhale.
Exhale each time you apply force in your exercise. Breathe out when you pull the weight up, like rising from a sit-up. Also exhale when you push yourself away while doing a push-up.
Breathing out or exhaling is very important for any exercises. For swimmers, proper exhalation makes them more relaxed in the water and balances them better, especially for freestyle strokes. In yoga, exhaling properly helps release stress and regulates the blood pressure due to its calming effect. Runners can prolong their pace when they know the right time to exhale.
Step 3: Know when to inhale.
Inhale each time you are on the relax period of the exercise. Breathe in when you pull your back straight during a sit-up. Also inhale when you pull your body downwards during a push-up.
Swimmers need to take a deep breath so that they can stay longer under the water and perform their strokes better. In yoga, inhaling is a symbol of collecting all your stress and preparing to let go of them as you exhale. Runners need this as well to get more oxygen for the muscles and heart.