Breathing is a very valuable and often overlooked function of the human body. When you inhale, you take in oxygen, which gets transported through blood cells. When you exhale, you get rid of toxins and gases such as carbon dioxide. Proper breathing during exercise is of utmost importance because it helps oxygenate hard-working muscles and supplies them with nutrient-rich blood.
Use proper form while lifting weights, then incorporate a proper breathing pattern with it. Use barbell curls as an example. Grab the bar in an underhand grip and stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Your arms should be straight at this point, and your hands should be shoulder width apart on the bar. Curl the bar up and squeeze your biceps at the top of the movement. Lower it back down and repeat. Take a big, deep inhale before you curl the bar. Exhale as you are exerting force during the curling movement. Inhale for the whole duration of the lowering movement. Apply this same breathing technique to all weight lifting exercises. The key thing to remember is to breathe out when you are exerting force.
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Master the art of low breathing during cardiovascular exercise. Start out at a low intensity for 5 minutes. Breathe in and out through your nose. Increase your intensity to your desired level and continue to breathe in and out through your nose. Keep your abdomen relaxed, take deep breaths and completely fill your stomach with air. Exhale slowly and retract your stomach back toward your spine. Continue this breathing pattern for the duration of your cardio session.
Execute proper breathing while you do yoga poses. Use a downward facing dog as an example. Assume a plank position with your hands directly under your shoulders. Walk your hands back as you lift your hips up in the air and push your weight back on your heels. Your body should be bent about 90 degrees. Hold the pose and take long, slow, diaphragmatic breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth. Fill your stomach with air and fully exhale before taking another breath.