Change Your Breathing, Change Your Life

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Slowly take a deep, slow breath in and out through the nose.

You’re tapping into your internal mechanism to improve your health and fitness. It’s easy, it’s cheap, and it’s always there.

Did you ever think about how your breathing affects you? Most people don’t. Although breathing is an automatic process of the body, you can control it. Your body must breathe in order to survive, and it will do all it can to ensure that you are able to. However, your environment, stress levels and how you breathe can all affect and even hinder this process.

It is possible to turn your life around by simply breathing through your nose.

You can reduce anxiety and improve your athletic performance by taking slower, more prolonged breaths through the nose. Nasal breathing is a slower way to breathe, so your body doesn’t have to work as hard for oxygen. According to a 2018 study published in the International Journal of Kinesiology and Sports Science, this is good for your overall health and athletic performance.

Although changing your breathing can seem overwhelming, it is possible to improve your awareness and practice tried methods. Nestor recommends inhaling for five seconds, holding it for four seconds, and exhaling after five seconds. This will slow down your breathing. Navy seals favor box breathing. You inhale, hold, and exhale for 4 seconds. Then, you hold the breath for 4 seconds. Finally, hold the breath for 4 seconds. It is calming and activates our parasympathetic nervous systems, rest and digest and the rest of our nervous system.

“When we breathe properly, we have enough carbon dioxide and our breathing is controlled, rhythmic, and quiet,” Patrick McKeown explains in The OXYGEN Advantage : The Simple, Scientifically Proven Breathing Techniques to a Fitter, Healthier, Slimmer and Faster You. Overbreathing can cause heavy breathing, more intense breathing, and an erratic exhalation, which leaves our bodies literally gasping for oxygen.

The Wim Hof Method is a combination of cold and breathing that has attracted the attention of celebrities and major media outlets. Science has also confirmed that it can increase your immunity.

“The current proof-of-principle research demonstrates that the sympathetic nerve system and immune system can be voluntarily affected through practices that are relatively simple to learn in a short time period,” wrote the researchers of a study published by the National Library of Medicine. It could have important implications for treating a wide range of conditions that cause excessive or persistent inflammation, including auto-immune disorders.

You can use this technique to improve your training, or to feel less stressed.

This post was written by Darryl Johnson, Co-Owner of Apex performance. At Apex performance we are a community of highly trained experts looking to provide performance enhancement and a permanent lifestyle change for our clients in a fun and interactive environment. Members can take advantage of a personal training in Tampa, one-on-one training, small group classes and specialized courses for a wide variety of athletics, sports training and body goals!


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