A better breathing is a required element of training after nutrition and every other provision for quick recovery. Up to now, you have heard about pre- and post-workout practices that ensure recovery to either build muscles or to trim fats except good breathing. This article provides you with techniques for good breathing that improves health and recovery process.
The Three Techniques of Good Breathing
When we talk about breathing exercise, you might be thinking about breathing in or out. No, there are also techniques and fashions of this that can bring a better recovery effect onto your body in between your workouts. Go through the below three techniques and learn new things here.
- Crocodile Breathing
This technique that originated from the Gray Cook is ideal when your secondary respiratory muscles needs to be kept out of process. It involves facing down with your body and using the ground as a tactile cue to eventually make you feel good by expanding your belly through a 360 degrees turn. Basically, it is the most effective corrective exercise for breathing.
Steps for Crocodile Breathing
One thing to be focused on here is the quality of the movement and not the quantity. If you do it perfectly, it becomes a part of your routine habit.
- Start by lying on the floor, your stomach touching the floor on that prone position.
- Make your fists join and rest your head passively on them.
- Point your toes down as you keep your legs as straight as possible.
- Relax your body in this central position.
You must note that in the beginning, the position of your hand and head will be quite uncomfortable. But, the significance of resting your head on the fist is to maintain the head in a neutral position with the head straight and not twisted in anyway to have very open airways into the lungs, and to maintain a more relaxed position away from tension and stretch. This is done by elevating the arms and the hand and the secondary muscles (neck and upper trap muscles).
You take correct positions to allow proper breathing at this stance. This permits you to focus on the quality of your breath and further allows for motor learning and skill transference.
While onto the position, adapt the following tempo of breath;
- Inhale for about 4 to 6 seconds
- Hold your breath for about 2 to 4 seconds
- Exhale for about 4 to 6 seconds
You need to make your focus onto the expansion of the belly and its movement pattern. Breathe into the floor as you expand your diaphragm. Expand the breath also through the sides of the torso together with the lower back. Have a partner for an effective moment who will touch your sides and use a block on your lower back to push up against each breath. Then shift your focus to your tempo of breath.
When Should You Use Crocodile Breathing?
This technique is effective for athletes re-patterning in their early stages of breathing. During their first stages, they struggle a lot to dissociate compensatory chest breathing from their deep-belly breath. This technique will serve them as a corrective exercise to make them adjust their breaths appropriately. If the progress is positive, the technique should be discontinued but the skill should be maintained on daily basis of training and/or activities.
- Parasympathetic Recovery Breathing
There is always an intermediary period between your last set and the time where your central nervous system is jammed during the workout. The effective way of minimizing the CNS jamming is by applying or using the recovery breathing as the day’s final exercise before you wind up the gym session. This is the so-called parasympathetic recovery breathing.
You will need to carefully monitor your loads and also recover in between these sessions for an optimal training. Though most lifters do focus only on the training and overlooks important processes of body recovery. But, how does that quick recovery come about? We need adequate nutrition, hydration and most importantly also, a breathing technique to aid for parasympathetic recovery.
Steps for parasympathetic recovery breathing
- Find a quiet area of the workout space that is away from music or noise.
- Lay on your back with your head resting on the ground.
- Elevate your legs to above heart level with knees slightly bent.
- Elevate your arms overhead.
- Close your eyes and relax the body.
In that position, you allow every muscle and nervous element to come restore back its normality function. Then focus on your breath.
Adapt the following tempo of breath;
- Inhale for 3 to 4 seconds
- Hold your breath for 2 to 3 seconds
- Exhale for 6 to 8 seconds
Lay down there until you have turned off the sympathetic switch and before leaving the workout station. Also, attempt methods like positive mental imagery to increase efficiency of this technique for the few minutes of rest. You can set an alarm for your prescribed duration in order to avoid checking the clock. Just enjoy a few minutes on the floor in celebration of the great workout you had just pulled out.
When should you use parasympathetic recovery breathing?
In cases of getting jacked up or jammed for hour hours after training, this technique will work best for you? It allows you to recover as fast as possible and be relaxed on daily basis. People training in the morning are likely to initiate or spark some sympathetic response through the action of nervous system and may eventually fail to catch up with their normal training. They have to stay the whole day until they have regained their potential energy and strength to continue their workouts. Without the recovery process, this can limit their muscle and strength performance, and of course can keep you from enjoying your life.
Instead of waiting for this damn exhaustion, you can free up the body tension or stress in between 3 to 5 minutes after training. This effects into reactivating your CNS for further work and gives an added gearing of continuity before winding up your day’s workout. Though it looks weird at the beginning, but it can set you up for go-for-it positivity with a much higher strength and energy of continuity.
- Tactical Breathing
This method (also called box breathing at times) is more of goblet squatting and then back squatting. Before imposing this technique onto a trainee, first of all address any dysfunctional breathing patterns and make a dynamo for improvement. After you have acquainting to belly breathing skill, continue to another skill. For instance, from supine to kneeling to standing. In the spaces, enable your breathing art – breathe properly, and develop it as a habit. Then you can implement the tactical breath.
Don’t use tactical breathing as you go on with a workout, it may be imperative. Try it rather on a calm and unpressured environment at first until you form its habit.
Steps for Tactical Breathing
- With your legs crossed on another, sit on the floor and maintain your spine straightly supported by the wall.
- Rest your hands on your lap.
- Keep your eyes closed and relax in this position.
- Inhale for 4 seconds (approximately 4 counts). Use your chest, your belly and your shoulders in that order to do that.
- Hold your breath for 4 seconds at the top of the inhalation.
- Then exhale for 4 seconds using your mouth.
- Pause at the bottom of the exhalation for few seconds between breaths.
For this breathing technique to be automatic, you must continue practicing. Afterwards you will proceed to kneeling and standing breathing too. Do add that into your training after you are well acquainted.
Adapt the following tempo of breath;
- Inhale for 4 seconds
- Hold your breath for 4 seconds
- Exhale for 4 seconds
Well, tactical breathing is highly effective in optimizing the exchange of breath in the lungs and the cardio-respiratory system. That 4 second pause is a rejuvenation for grading back the sympathetic response, mechanically speaking and the active tissues. One may need a bunch of breaths during the rest periods from intensive and aerobic exercise to quicken recovery.
When Should You Use Tactical Breathing?
Use tactical breathing during your intensive-training rest period to optimize your intra-set recovery. It functions to steady your central nervous system. This way, it allows for a more complete but full mechanical and systemic recovery. You should not sit around huffing and puffing for after every tough set of squats – you need to be above the game! Tactical breathing allows for faster adaptation and easier recovery. When you quickly recover, you are likely to perform the best in your training. In process, you will waste very less energy and can streamline into a longer training session.
Measuring the Impact
Once you feel that comfortable calmness in your body, you have well reached it. Refine your skills with crocodile breathing if you find it a struggle. If these don’t work, get a coach to take you through these. Personal psychologist can also be a good idea in this matter.