Lung Strength & Function
Today, I’m going to cover a very fast, no pun intended, fast exhalation exercise.
Lung Strength & Function – Getting Some Context
Usually when we are working on improving respiratory muscular strength we use devices like this, which is an inspiratory and expiratory muscle training device meaning it has resistance.
However, there is some excellent research out that indicates that if we do nothing more than just focus on a fast exhalation we can improve oblique activity, transversus activity and we can also improve lung function just by focusing on non-resisted fast exhalation.
Here’s how you do it.
Lung Strength & Function – Correct & Incorrect Method
You’re going to buy a very, very cheap, very inexpensive spirometer. This will cost you 15 or 20 bucks on Amazon and is a fantastic training tool.
If you have asthma, you probably are used to using one of these, but these are invaluable for working on improving respiratory function.
Here’s how the exercise is done. After you have your spirometer, you’re going to stand there. You’re going to take a very full breath in deep – as deep as you can. And then you are going to do a very sharp, fast exhalation with the focus being on the instantaneous intensity of the exhale.
We’re not trying to empty our lungs.
So I’m going to demonstrate it correctly and incorrectly.
Alright, so first full breath in and a super fast, super hard exhalation.
All right. Now you get a measurement on your spirometer not a big deal right now unless you’re tracking it for a specific reason.
The other way that people often do this, which does not seem to be as effective, is to work on exhaling all of their air.
So this is the incorrect version.
Both can have some effect but in terms of looking at the literature what we’re seeing is the first version – the fast instantaneous hard contraction to get the air out is more effective.
Lung Strength & Function – How Much To Do?
The way that we were going to do this is you are going to do 20 breaths and you’re going to do that in three minutes.
That’s because we don’t want this to feel horrible.
It doesn’t have to be super fast or super intense.
So you set your timer for three minutes.
You do 20 sharp, fast, instantaneous exhalations after a full inhale.
If you do that, based on the research study that we’ve been looking at, you’re looking at doing that three times a week for four weeks.
That particular regimen – very easy – is literally going to take you whatever that is.
Nine minutes per week.
It’s shown some quite profound effects on improving respiratory muscle strength and also some measures of lung function.
So give this a shot.
Let us know how it goes.