This is a sign that you haven’t been working on the muscles that help you breathe. Do you find yourself out of breath after going up stairs or upstairs? Maybe you should look into respiratory training. Respiratory training includes simple exercises that improve the activation of your diaphragm. A couple activities that really utilize the diaphragm are yoga and Pilates.
If you are able to supply oxygen to your body and remove waste products during exercise, then you will find yourself less out of breath than before. Your diaphragm is a muscle at the bottom of your rib cage and directly under your lungs. It plays a crucial role in stabilizing your core, which is why it can be strengthened by abdominal exercises.
Your diaphragm is what you see compressing and contracting when you are breathing in out. Your diaphragm should be rising out when you breathe in, and falling when you are breathing out. This means that you are getting an ample about of air and not restricting the amount of air that is going into your lungs which is the opposite of chest breathing. The more efficiently that you breath, the healthier your lungs will be.
There are many different exercises and stretches that you can do in order to build up your diaphragm. One of the best things that you can do is to go to a beginner’s yoga class where they will teach you some basic breathing techniques. The most important aspect to breathing in yoga and Pilates is to breathe in your diaphragm without moving your chest up and down. Another option is resistance training which means that after you have mastered diaphragm breathing while laying down, you add weight on your upper abdomen in order to strengthen even further.
If you feel like you may be suffering from shallow breathing, OSR will be able to help make sure that you are getting enough oxygen to your body. Our physical therapy team here in Kailua will put together a plan of care in order to make sure that you get your diaphragm in the best shape possible!
For some great exercises to try at home to strengthen your diaphragm click here!