Bohemian modernist flat downtown

Zografou, Greece
Laid-back, colorful, modernist 60 sq.m. flat downtown. Feels as if you're staying at an absent friend's place. A variety of day- and night-life options accessible even on foot. Easy to commute, dir...

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Dynamo Concepts Training Videos: How to Breathe for Performance

I don't know why, but way too many people in martial arts circles project mystical properties on breathing. And people who want to take advantage of other people make sure that confusion is perpetuated and as widely spread as possible - in a few words, ignorance sells seminars.
I hate to be a party pooper, but breathing is just a physiological process, that helps provide energy for the activities involved in... well, life. Now, if an activity demands lots of energy, breathing performs one more role, namely that of delaying the onset of muscular fatigue: you breathe faster, thus you exhale more often, so you remove the excess carbon dioxide from your blood, so you slow down the acidification of your muscles - no biggie there either. Let's take this one step further: if your activity involves generating significant amounts of power or absorbing significant amounts of force, then your breathing acquires one more role, this time a biomechanical one, that of stabilizing your core, in order for your limbs to have a stable platform to generate power from.  - simple as ABC!

In case you did not notice, in both cases above, physiology AND biomechanics, it is your exhalation playing all the important parts: removing excess carbon dioxide AND stabilizing your core. So, the basic idea behind the performance breathing method we use in the Dynamo Concepts system is to emphasize exhalation and the rest will take care of itself. I was first taught this method of breathing by A.I. Retuinskih, founder of the ROSS system. Down the road, through personal communication with Dr Vladimir Tikhonov, a sports scientist working with the Russian kettlebell sport national team, I found out that this the exact same way elite kettlebells athletes breathe during the later, most fatiguing stages of their sets.

In the following video I am explaining this method of breathing that, in the ROSS system, is known as 'using the body as bellows' and I am using the kettlebell snatch lift in order to demonstrate one type of application. Besides my work with kettlebells, I have applied this breathing technique with my students during bag and focus mitts work and have found out that it helps keep the heart rate significantly lower during intense effort exercise.

Go ahead and check the video, then, and If there's anything I could further explain, just send me a message. Please keep in mind that my breathing in the video is a bit more pronounced so that it can be audible - you definitely don't have to breathe so loud, but you sure need to coordinate your breathing with the rhythm of your movement.

Train smart, train safe, be your own instructor,