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-   -   Exercises to keep breathing? (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7786)

suren 03-24-2005 12:59 PM

Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Hi all,

This question seems trivial - just keep breathing, but yet I find it pretty difficult to keep breathing during a hard training, which leads to tiredness at the end of the class. I can see the same problem when more advanced students do juyuwaza or randori. Yet, there are people who breath and seem relaxed through the whole session and they seem to be as fresh as in the beginning of the class.
My question is: how to train this ability to keep breathing even when you do a hard technique or even when you do difficult ukemi.
I realize this is connected to being relaxed, not fear to be thrown of to be injured, but are there any exercises that could help?
From my understanding running and maybe multiple bokken cuts should help to keep the breathing in shape. Any other ideas?

Thanks,
Suren.

Ron Tisdale 03-24-2005 01:07 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
I smoke (trying to quit now) and don't do enough aerobic exercise, so I always have been pretty dissapointed in my breathing. Relaxing does seem to help a lot! But I'm not so relaxed...so...but its getting better. Just keep at it. One other thing that seems to help me is to really focus on the breathing pattern during technique. I alternate between controlling the in and out breath during the technique, and doing the technique all in one breath, or recieving the technique all in one out breath.

Good luck,
Ron

akiy 03-24-2005 01:27 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Hi Suren,

One "technique" that I've heard is to keep humming...

-- Jun

mj 03-24-2005 02:33 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Running would probably be more than enough if you commited to it regularly. :)

Paul Kerr 03-24-2005 02:40 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
In through the nose and out through the mouth - especially when you get tired.

xuzen 03-24-2005 11:48 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Quote:

Suren Baghdasaryan wrote:
Hi all,

This question seems trivial - just keep breathing, but yet I find it pretty difficult to keep breathing during a hard training, which leads to tiredness at the end of the class. I can see the same problem when more advanced students do juyuwaza or randori. Yet, there are people who breath and seem relaxed through the whole session and they seem to be as fresh as in the beginning of the class.
My question is: how to train this ability to keep breathing even when you do a hard technique or even when you do difficult ukemi.
I realize this is connected to being relaxed, not fear to be thrown of to be injured, but are there any exercises that could help?
From my understanding running and maybe multiple bokken cuts should help to keep the breathing in shape. Any other ideas?

Thanks,
Suren.

Suren,

Two things come into my mind with regards to your question above:

1) Cardio conditioning. Any aerobic activities will improve your stamina, e.g., cycling, jogging, swimming, even brisk walking. If you are a dojo bum who doesn't go anywhere for your recommended daily exercise allowance, then doing loads of back breakfalls or side breakfalls prior and after class will also improve cardio function.

2) Muscle toning. By increasing your body muscle composition. Muscle tends to work more efficiently compared to say, your adipose (fat) tissue or smooth muscle tissue. This means you as a whole should improve your endurance. Hence weight training (under trained supervision) or bokken suburi are good choices. However IMO, bokken suburi tends to only work on the upper body.

Boon.

SeiserL 03-25-2005 05:18 AM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Its rather usual when people copncentrate or try too hard that they tend to hold their breath. One way to train/condition/habituate this out is to go back to basics and incorporate breathing into the technique. Breathe in as you enter and blend, out when you execute. With time the breathing pattern just becomes part of the technqiue and adds a great deal to it. You may just be dealing with a stress response as well as some general cardio conditioning.

Mark Jakabcsin 03-25-2005 06:27 AM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Suren,
Slow down your training and focus on your breathing. Make the coordination of your breathing and motion essential to the technique......which it is. When you are comfortable and successful at one speed, pick up the pass a tiny bit. At first this will seem boring but in a few short months, if done correctly, you will begin to learn to move and breathe together.

Outside of the dojo also work on coordinating your breathing and movement. When you get up from a chair or get out of bed do you hold your breath? When you walk across a parking lot is your breathing coordinated with your motion? When you bend to lift up a box, how are you breathing? Is it coordinated with your motion? Breathing is extremely related to relaxation, hence by learning to move and breathe you will also be learning to relax. Enjoy.

MJ

CaseyD 03-25-2005 01:21 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
How about breathing during ukemi? If I'm rolling I can easily breathe out, but I tend to hold my breath if Im going to land on my back. I often get tired when getting thrown by iriminage.

Bryan 03-25-2005 01:34 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Quote:

Casey Darwin wrote:
How about breathing during ukemi? If I'm rolling I can easily breathe out, but I tend to hold my breath if Im going to land on my back. I often get tired when getting thrown by iriminage.

It may annoy some of your trainging partners, but a good kiai when taking a fall will help you to keep breathing. Once you have confidence and control over your breathing you could eliminate the vocals. Many striking arts encourage kiai when taking a hit to keep the core tight and to keep you breathing through and beyond the attack....amongst other reasons.


just a suggestion

suren 03-25-2005 01:52 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Many thanks to all. Your responces are as always helpful and invaluable.

xuzen 03-25-2005 07:40 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Quote:

Bryan Walker wrote:
It may annoy some of your trainging partners, but a good kiai when taking a fall will help you to keep breathing. Once you have confidence and control over your breathing you could eliminate the vocals. Many striking arts encourage kiai when taking a hit to keep the core tight and to keep you breathing through and beyond the attack....amongst other reasons.


just a suggestion

Bryan,

I have been doing the kiai when falling down thingy and yes you are right, it actually makes you last longer in jiyu waza/randori... I guess it all boils down to breathing.

Boon.

Mark Jakabcsin 03-28-2005 08:24 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Quote:

Casey Darwin wrote:
How about breathing during ukemi? If I'm rolling I can easily breathe out, but I tend to hold my breath if Im going to land on my back. I often get tired when getting thrown by iriminage.

Casey,
Imagine your lungs are an inflated rubber raft. The valve is closed and something very heavy falls on top of the raft. The raft pops because there isn't anywhere for the air to go, hence all of the force is directed into the raft. Your mouth is the valve of the raft, when you are thrown, your body and the ground are the heavy object. If you stop breathing and keep the valve closed, there is no where for the force to go but into your body. Hence open your mouth and match your exhale with the force of the ukemi. This will greatly reduce the wear and tear on your body and increase your ukemi pleasure.

MJ

John Matsushima 04-04-2005 07:07 AM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Ki breathing exercises have helped me with my breathing. I practice them whenever I can, throughout my day, and it has helped me to take longer, deeper, slower breaths. I have found I can do a technique and then some in one breath. The old saying to "do a technique in one breath" is a little confusing. I used to think that this meant matching my breath to the technique. For example, for a shomen-uchi ikkyo, I would inhale when meeting the attack, then exhale when going down for the pin. This may be a good place to start to start taking control of your own breath, but as you start to do techniques one after another, or do randori, the breath runs short. So for me, I do one technique "within one breath", making my breaths longer by staying relaxed, and being able to do more. Of course, physical fitness does help too as well as humming (but make sure it's a nice, slow and easy song; I wouldn't recommend humming to Metallica) :freaky:

MaryKaye 04-04-2005 10:20 AM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
One of my teachers recommends turning off the hot water at the end of a shower and trying to control your breathing through the shock of having cold water spray on you. (This is the "home version" of cold-water misogi.) He says that if you can learn to control your breathing through that, it will carry over into ukemi. You can ki-ai on the exhale to make it easier.

I will admit, I don't do this very often, and usually end up springing out of the shower as if poked by a pin....

Mary Kaye

Gabriel A 04-04-2005 02:28 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Ron, good luck in quiting!
Regards
Gabriel

Rupert Atkinson 04-04-2005 05:38 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Quote:

Suren Baghdasaryan wrote:
Hi all,

This question seems trivial - just keep breathing, but yet I find it pretty difficult to keep breathing during a hard training, which leads to tiredness at the end of the class...Yet, there are people who breath and seem relaxed through the whole session and they seem to be as fresh as in the beginning of the class...From my understanding running and maybe multiple bokken cuts should help to keep the breathing in shape. Any other ideas?

You have answered your own question. Run, and run until you get your breathing in rhythm with your running.

And for those who seem as fresh at the end - maybe they have just gotten used to their training and are not training hard enough. Or, maybe they are just very fit. But, sometimes, the only people 'working' are the low grades. I think everyone should be pushed a little. Or, those seniors may BE tired, but not LOOK tired. That is another skill to acquire :) But, it certainly makes sense to aim to be able to train hard and not be too tired.

Rupert Atkinson 04-04-2005 05:51 PM

Re: Exercises to keep breathing?
 
Quote:

Mary Kuhner wrote:
One of my teachers recommends turning off the hot water at the end of a shower and trying to control your breathing through the shock of having cold water spray on you. (This is the "home version" of cold-water misogi.) He says that if you can learn to control your breathing through that, it will carry over into ukemi. You can ki-ai on the exhale to make it easier.

I will admit, I don't do this very often, and usually end up springing out of the shower as if poked by a pin....

Mary Kaye

My grandfather believed in the cold bath. And he used to chuck me in too! The Result? I like jumping in the cold bath at the bath house. I have also tried to control my breath at that moment.

I also used to go canoeing - even in winter. Wet-suit or not, the first dunk of the day in a freezing river takes control of your body away from you. The shock to your body is so much that you cannot even breathe for a moment, sometimes a few seconds. In fact, your muslces also freeze up and your body can barely move. Once used to it, you are 'in control' of this lack of control. You relax, bob about a little, and slowly get the breathing and moving of limbs in order. And then reach for that damned canoe ...

It's not the shock of falling into a cold river that kills, it is the panic the sudden shock (of being momentarily 'frozen-stiff' if you like) can create. So, I think your cold shower idea has merit. Except, as I remember, Aikikai Hombu only had cold showers. So, I recommend, try it without the hot part and see how that wakes you up for the day :)


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