Working with the Breath to Win

From James Seng, Program Director.

In our work with clients, we may want to open them up to more control over their bodies by introducing them to breath work. Many exercise modalities provide specific instruction in breath work and many share commonalities.

We can teach athletes how to get the most out of each breath, expand their lung capacity and blood oxygen capacity and get the benefit of increased VO2. They will perform faster, longer with proper breathing. Forced rapid and deep inhalation can strengthen and train the inspiratory muscles while forced rapid exhalations can strengthen the expiatory muscles. Breath retention exercises can expand the oxygen carrying capacity of our blood, the overall lung capacity and oxygen exaction rates. Check out what the Oxygen Advantage has to say about breathing for optimal performance.

Breath work is excellent for people suffering from hypertension and obesity as well. Many studies have shown that breath work lowers blood pressure both in the short term and long term, which makes it a great treatment.

Controlling the breath can also help us get deeper into ourselves and our bodies, offering control of processes that were thought to be only under subconscious control (check out: Wim Hoff). In this ted talk Lucas Rockwood talks about the power of breath.

In Yoga breath work is called pranayama and has specific goals associated with each exercise. Pranayama from

There are many ACSM approved certifications for breath coach. This can be something you peruse to enrich your own life and to add to the value you can offer to your clients.