Running Technique – Breathing Struggles When Running

Over the past 3-4 years I’ve been working with a number of runners and one of the most common struggles are related to breathing patterns and rhythm. Every running has questions regarding this.

How should I breath when running?
Is there a rhythm?
How do I breath in through the nose if I can’t get enough oxygen in?
How do I keep the rhythm? I lose it after a while

In the 6 min video below I attempt to address all these questions and suggest several solutions. If you have a health condition that can be made worse through deep breathing or breathing exercises talk to your doctor before applying the ideas in this video.

The struggles identified:

– can’t take in enough oxygen through the nose
– can’t keep the same rhythm of breathing through the nose for a long time
– nose hurts when breathing through the nose in winter (because it’s cold)

 

Some of the solutions discussed in this video:

 

1. Correct breathing rhythm through the nose

To begin with I suggest the following rhythm:

2:2 – 2 in breathes, 2 out breaths
For practice and to increase lung capacity you can take it up to 10:10 and then down to 2:2.
Eventually you want a 2:3 pattern or 4:3 (breathing out one longer than in). This is because you want to avoid the first out breathe to fall on the same foot over and over again.

 

2. How to keep the rhythm through longer runs

Don’t worry if you lose the rhythm. Maybe after breathing 10 times on the nose you need to breathe a few time through the mouth. It’s not a problem and not written in stone. Then get back in the rhythm.

 

3. How to practice the rhythm until it becomes natural

If you want nose breathing to be natural you have to close your mouth throughout the day and breathe through your nose. You might feel you cannot get enough oxygen.

However, how do you expect to be efficient breathing through your nose if you breathe through your mouth when you walk, sleep and do housework.

Breathe through your nose, that’s why it’s there, for you to use it for breathing.

 

4. How to allow more oxygen to come in through the nose

Relax. This is the “trick”. Forcing air in by tension your nose and face will only restrict the flow. Relax your face, mouth, nose and nostrils and allow the air free passage through your nose.

When you need to breathe in through the mouth just do it and then go back to using the nose. Even if you have a problem with the nose (i.e. sinus) and it restricts the breathing relaxing your nose and face can’t harm, but only help.

As mentioned before, you cannot expect to take it enough oxygen through the nose, to be efficient, if you don’t use it.

 

5. Abdominal breathing

Efficient breathing doesn’t only mean breathing through your nose but also breathing into the stomach without lifting your shoulder.

For runners the shoulders and level of tension in them impacts their performance almost instantly. Watch the video on how to relax the shoulders.

Watch the video below as I give examples and talk about other aspects as well. If you wish to attend our dedicated running workshops email support@themtechnique.com

alexandramerisoiu
Alexandra Merisoiu, The Body Engineer, is the Founder of The Merisoiu Technique - Institute Of Health And Human Movement and Dracula’s Retreat. She is also a qualified Low Back Pain Management and Prevention Exercise Instructor and REPS registered.

She specialises in working with runners, beginners and advanced, who want to run faster, further, with less effort and fewer injuries. This is done through natural movement fitness and running technique and mechanics drawn from the many disciplines Alexandra has studies throughout the years, including long distance running.

Since 1995 she has explored how the body and mind works. She has done this through using many different sporting techniques and working with a wide variety of highly respected coaches. Throughout her Martial Arts career she has achieved 3rd Dan Black Belt in Karate Shotokan, runs her own Karate club and is IJKA 2017 triple World Champion, 2016 WMO Martial Arts British National and European Champion. She still competes at an international level.

It is through these learnings, and drawing inspiration from respected natural movement names such as MovNat, IdoPortal and POSE Method of running among many others, that she has created The Merisoiu Technique and has established her own unique transformational programs that incorporate thousands of years of knowledge with Natural Human Movement.

Alexandra’s mission is to challenge the status quo of how to achieve the truly strong, fit and powerful body a runner needs to perform at their best level. This is done through building strong, lasting foundations in the natural outdoor environment; reducing the risk of injuries and educating people on the power of the fundamentals of natural human movement and running mechanics.

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