Who would have thought that breathing could be such a complicated process? But when you’re in the middle of a hard workout and breathing fast, you’ll definitely be aware of how important it is. If you’re a CrossFit workout enthusiast, you may have gotten the hang of the many different moves and have started honing in on your technique, but have you thought much about your breath? These helpful breathing techniques could help you improve your performance.
Breathing at Your Desk
If you need a break from the never-ending report you’re working on, take a few minutes to practice breathing. In just one or two minutes, you can increase the activity of the parasympathetic nervous system, which a system that helps achieve a calmer feeling. The best way to do this is lying on the ground with your feet up on a wall, but to avoid stares from coworkers, you can simply sit in your chair. Place one hand on your chest and one on your abdominals. Start by taking a few deep breaths, focusing on both the inhalation and the exhalation. Make sure that your abdominals are rising before your chest.
We all know to complete a few stretches before really getting into the bulk of a workout. But before you start stretching your body, stretch your lungs first. Take a few minutes to foam roll your upper body, including your chest, shoulders, and neck. After that, spend a few minutes taking deep breaths in and out just like the exercise above. Warming up your breath before a workout will ensure that your body is ready to go and there will be less heavy, uncomfortable breathing during the CrossFit workout.
During the CrossFit Workout
There are two tips to remember during your workout:
- Valsalva Maneuver: Take a deep breath just before lifting and hold that breath while you lift. Ask your CrossFit instructor for more information about this maneuver.
- Bracing: To create stability and to reduce injury, while performing moves like the lateral raise, tighten your abs, lower back, lats, and obliques.
Again, talk to your CrossFit instructor for more information about these techniques. At Kahala, safety is always our top priority. To practice these techniques, visit our CrossFit location in Honolulu.