You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.

X

Welcome to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Breathe properly and rest easy


Breathing is so second nature that few of us stop to think about the effects it can have on our health.

Learning to breathe properly can have a profound influence on our state of mind, relieving stress and promoting a feeling of well-being. Other benefits include better circulation, lower blood pressure and increased energy.

The vast majority of people are shallow breathers, using only a fraction of their lung capacity. They barely take in enough oxygen to expand the ribcage and, without being aware, they may also periodically hold their breath, breathe unevenly or over-breathe when exercising. The result can lead to fatigue, headaches, dizziness, fuzzy thinking and in extreme cases, fainting.

Deep abdominal breathing on the other hand, uses the diaphragm, a large sheetlike muscle located at the bottom of the chest cavity, allowing more air into the lowest and largest part of the lungs. Breathing more slowly and deeply can actually increase exercise capacity. One way to practice deep breathing is to slowly and fully inhale through the nose, pause for a few seconds,and exhale fully through the mouth. The abdominal area should rise and fall as you breathe.

Environmental factors can make breathing difficult. Studies have shown that exercising under smoggy conditions can decrease lung capacity by as much as 20 percent. Exercising in colder air and/or low humidity can also worsen breathing-related symptoms. Do your best to monitor air pollution levels if you plan to exercise outdoors, and avoid high-pollution areas altogether.

Have you ever experienced headaches when exercising? Exertional headache may arise as a result of straining or holding ones breath when exercising, especially if lifting heavier weights. Typically with this type of headache, the acute onset of severe throbbing pain, lasting from a few seconds to a few minutes, is followed by a dull ache lasting anywhere from four to six hours. Thereafter, the headache seems to recur with exertion. Most exertional headaches are benign, but to rule out medical causes, it is a good idea to check with your doctor.

Exercise-induced asthma (EIA) is a narrowing of the airways that causes breathing difficulties. It is theorized that EIA is due to the cooling and dehydration of the lungs that occurs during activity as more rapid breathing takes place.

Sudden sharp, intense pain under the lower edge of the ribcage is known as a “side stitch.” Such pain is caused by a muscle spasm of the diaphragm and usually happens during rigorous exercise, such as long distance running. This condition occurs more frequently in novice exercisers and people who are shallow breathers, although even seasoned athletes may experience stitches at some point.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in

Michelle Obama takes dogs Sunny and Bo on final walk through White House
Michelle Obama takes dogs Sunny and Bo on final walk through White House

The Obamas will soon leave the White House for the last time as the president and first lady. Their eight years in the historic house is coming to an end. First lady Michelle Obama took the Obama’s Portuguese water dogs Bo and Sunny on what’s described as a final walk through the building the Obama’s have called home now since 2009...
Dog found in Detroit with ears, nose cut off
Dog found in Detroit with ears, nose cut off

The Michigan Humane Society is seeking the public’s help in a horrific case of animal abuse. The organization received a call from a concerned citizen in a Detroit neighborhood on Tuesday, and a rescue team located the injured Rottweiler mix and rushed him to an animal hospital after observing his severe wounds, according to a press release from...
Dating website matches Trump supporters
Dating website matches Trump supporters

One California man wants to "make dating great again" with a Trump-themed dating website. Trump Singles is a not-quite-new, but suddenly ignore-at-your-own-peril dating site is aimed squarely at supporters of the president-elect. Founder David Goss launched the site in May 2016 for "like minded" people with the same political views...
Gmail phishing scam may lead users to give up login info
Gmail phishing scam may lead users to give up login info

A new phishing scam is allowing hackers to gain access to unsuspecting Gmail users' accounts and target their login credentials, according to recent reports. Mark Maunder, CEO of security service Wordfence, described the scam in detail in a blog post, adding that it is also targeting other services beyond Gmail. Tech Times reported that the scam involves...
Tuna, star of the Amazing Acro-Cats, dies of cancer
Tuna, star of the Amazing Acro-Cats, dies of cancer

The cowbell won't sound quite the same now that Tuna, the star of the Amazing Acro-Cats cat circus, has died.Happy Cats Haven posted the news Friday on its Facebook page: "To all our fans of Tuna and The Rock Cats and the Amazing Acro-Cats, it's with many tears that we let you know that Samantha Martin's star kitty Tuna crossed the Rainbow Bridge...
More Stories