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On This Page: Aerobic Reserve | Backpacking | Bench Pressing | Exercising | Free Diving & Underwater Swimming | Golfing | Hyperventilation | Movement | Running & Jogging | Surfing FAQ Pages: Asthma & Bronchitis | Exercise | Mental / Emotional Disorders | Performing | Physical Disorders | Rebirthing & Leonard Orr | Sleeping & Snoring | Spirituality | Techniques & Tools | Weight Loss & Body Flex | Miscellaneous A-M | Miscellaneous N-Z [ Return to Top ^ ] AEROBIC RESERVE Dear Mike: Do your techniques or exercises generate just as much capacity as activities commonly described as aerobic? From Mike: The key is how much energy is expended in accumulating the energy. What is the "cost" of accumulating that energy. We are looking at #130 Better Breathing Exercise #2, the #176 Rapidly Improving Your Breathing Video exercise called "Side to Side." To be optimal you must also expand the rib cage and cause an increase in the rise of the diaphragm. This requires the #176 Rapidly Improving Your Breathing Video and #130 Better Breathing Exercise #2. Mike [ Return to Top ^ ] BACKPACKING & BREATHING Mike, I read with interest your article on proper breathing versus restrictive clothing. You make some very good points. My passion is hiking and backpacking. As you know, most of today's packs are designed to transfer a lot of weight to the hips via a padded hip belt, which must be strapped on fairly tight to be of any use. Such belts around the abdomen at the hip level make "belly" breathing a bit difficult. Your comments please and maybe some suggestions. From Mike: That is a very interesting to me. When I go walking I walk with weights (26 pounds) wrapped criss cross front and back over each shoulder across me like a bandelero for bullets, made of tough leather-like plastic filled with steel or lead BBs. They were special made years ago from a man named Steel and I cannot find the manufacturer but they are great because they allow my chest to expand in all directions and to breathe fully. Water might work as well instead of the BBs. Could be a good product. I would give free breathing.com recommendation to such a product. The first thing that comes to mind is to carry things on the head but that is not easy and has cervical dangers. If someone were to make a special pair of pants like a jump suit that had side pockets at the hip that the pack slipped into to distribute the weight? But then we still have the shoulder pressure. I notice that the real heavy packs are balanced a lot above the shoulders. Reminds me a little of African and Tibetan bearers. There is wisdom there, Lighter packs and pack animals would me MY choice if I needed to carry my food and equipment.

Related Topics Aerobics Asthma and Exercise "Breathing Lessons" Article in Woman's Sports and Fitness Exercise FAQ Florence Griffith Joyner Hyperventilation Side Stitches--How to Avoid Cramps When Working Out Rebounders & Breathing Spinning Sports-Induced Breathing Problems Questions

Ask Mike your questions via e-mail, phone or mail Contact Mike. Toll-Free Phone 866 MY INHALE 866 694 6425 International 001 828 456 5689 Fax 828 454 5475 International Fax

001 828 454 5475 Michael Grant White Box 1551 Waynesville, NC 28786 USA Mail Wanted We would love to hear from you. Please send us your Optimal Breathing Development success story. "He who breathes most air lives most life." -- Elizabeth Barrett Browning

The hip versions out now might want to be less belly and back invasive if possible. Certain exercises like the Sit Bend and shhhh and the BASIC BASIC in the #191 Secrets of Optimal Natural Breathing can be used to offset the low back weight-pressure-invasion by the back pack. There are others to offset other stresses of movement and portage. All of this reminds me of meeting Will Siri of the Sierra Club back in the 70s. He was on the first American team that conquered Mt. Everest. He did it in his 50s I believe. What a rock of a man. he was awesome, even in his sixties. Mike Recommended program [ Return to Top ^ ] BENCH PRESSING & BREATHING Hi Mike, Just purchased your tapes and book. What had brought my attention to your offering was a web search. I had been walking during lunch at work with a rather "competitive" colleague. Turned out to be a bust because I was inhaling so much pollen & exhaust that I was making myself sick with phlegm and extreme shallow breath. This made me very nervous. I have been listening to your tapes and the bells in th background are very relaxing. The exercise has helped me take fuller -better quality breaths which in turn has helped me to relax which in turn has improved my life. I also have a question -- does bench pressing weights (which ads bulk to the pectoral muscles ) have in any way a restricting effect on breathing???? Bud From Mike: Absolutely. Bench pressing is what I do the least of in my workouts. If you got the manual you will find the weight training series of about 25 exercises around weight room equipment. Good stuff when used judiciously. Judiciously is the key word, as in most things in life, moderation is the key. Mike Recommended program [ Return to Top ^ ] EXERCISE AND CHEST PAINS Question I started doing two exercises I saw in an article about two weeks ago. One was jumping rope and the other lifting small weights(@ 5lbs) I did both of these every night not longer than ten minutes. However, starting a few days ago I have been having upper chest pains. These are continuous pains, when I breathe, stretch, etc. Could this just be a pulled muscle from the exercise? I'm a little concerned since they have not gone away yet. Please send me your answer. I am wary of going to the doctor just to be told it's a strained or pulled chest muscle. (I have stopped the exercises for now). I am 23 years old and in fair shape. From Mike: It may be that you are breathing incorrectly when you exert but to be sure you should go to the doctor to rule out anything worse. When you get the Sports Performance program, then you can ask me a question or two if you need. Mike [ Return to Top ^ ] EXERCISE-INDUCED BREATHING PROBLEMS Dear Mike: I have recently developed a difficulty with my ability in regards to deep breathing based on a substantial second hand smoke situation and also I hate to admit an occasional use of an illegal herb. My doctor doesn't dispute it, but feels it mostly derives from my anxiety, in other words making the existing problem worse. I am 48 years old, in superb health and exercise regularly and feel I am in tune with my body. I definitely agree that I exacerbate things when I have difficulty breathing but feel there is an underlying cause that I at this point am hopeful to try and eradicate and not just treat. I also have come to the conclusion that some of my chest tightness which may further increase my anxiety is derived from a recent increase in my weight lifting. From Mike:

Probably so. So stop weight lifting until you know how to do it properly. I recently had a severe ankle sprain which has caused me to decrease my cardio workouts considerably, possibly adding to my woes. The last few days, however, I am back at the cardio, and during the activity and for a period of time afterwards, felt like my old self (I felt great), but as the day wore on, I could feel the strange lack of oxygen sensation I currently experience reassert its presence. I'm not really short of breath, just can't get that full dose of air. At times I feel fine and have never had a cough, wheezing, fatigue, or anything else other than the tightness which I explained. Is someone with early stage COPD capable of doing what I am doing? Possibly, but do not think that way. Develop your breathing properly and it will not be an issue. Is there any chance the worst case scenario is that I do indeed have something like emphysema? Does not matter if you do what is necessary and proper. I have had this about a month and feel as though I can conquer it however. My major symptom is simply that I cannot get a good long breath like I am used to, but I can still perform in the most vigorous of activities it seems. Can one just get a major assault to the respiratory system and fully recover? The doctor has me on Alprazolam (Zantac) which actually does some good, but is it masking the real problem or does it being effective indicate that a large part of my problem is indeed anxiety? I agree. Anxiety is caused primarily by poor breathing. It also exposes and if occurring enough can cause poor breathing; reflecting and effecting. Read the article on reducing anxiety, and practice that exercise. See if you calm down a bit. After all it does work as a muscle relaxant. But there are times on it or without it that I am nearly 100%. From your website I gather you are an incredibly knowledgeable individual and I humbly seek your advice. I am not prepared currently to buy one of your products but I swear to God if I am cured I will be strengthening my breathing techniques with one of your products for sure and offer the grandest of testimonials. I have hundreds of grand testimonials. You just need to do the correct thing now. Promise. Now I need something else. What do you think? A bad incident that will go away? I had zero problems whatsoever until one day I noticed difficulty breathing. Before that I'm out playing basketball hard with 20-year-olds on a regular basis with no inkling of a problem. Is this something you're familiar with and I would appreciate your best advice. I am waiting for chest x-ray results sometime next week, and are there other tests I should take that you may feel are necessary? You will never be CURED. That is a concept that the medical establishment often overuses. You need to take responsibility for your exercise and breathing development. Then you will probably not have those problems. I recommend you get our Rapid Breathing Development program at. It comes with a money back guarantee because it works. [ Return to Top ^ ] FIREFIGHTER AND SURFER All of your exertion is probably causing your breath to be restricted. You are almost guaranteed a MAJOR advance in your progress if you visit to me in my office. Or get my Rapid Breathing Development program, and see how you do with it. It should help a great deal as well. You can also do phone consults. [ Return to Top ^ ] GOLF Hello Mike, Just a few words to let you know that you are having success I personally have benefited greatly from breathing exercises but I never really suffered badly but as good disciple I have been carrying the message forward I live in North Wales UK and area once well known for its coal mines and its resulting chest and breathing problems. I was recently playing golf with an ex miner when he start having breathing problems and was in distress so later over a drink I explained to him about different methods breathing as he said he had not been given any such advice from his Doctors I downloaded some of your info and others off the web and posted it to him, I didn't see him for a month then one day when arriving at the club he rushed over to me grinning from ear to ear he had read my info he felt miles better but most of all was the vast improvement in the quality of his sleep, I have made a pal for life. Many thanks and God Bless. Len M. From Mike: Good for you. Whenever I get to Wales I can show both of you a special way of using the breath to improve your game. Recommended product to enhance relaxation and breathing ease while playing golf.

[ Return to Top ^ ] HYPERVENTILATION Question: How is hyper-ventilation normally treated? From Mike: Four ways I know of are drugs, surgery and breathing into a paper bag, and biofeedback. The first three are inefficient and worsen or develop bad breathing habits, the last is ok but not as effective as Optimal Breathing techniques and exercises. Recommended Program [ Return to Top ^ ] HYPERVENTILATION SYNDROME I got hyperventilation syndrome and I can't give you a clear and simple explanation of why I have this syndrome. I believe is an habit that I have because when I sleep I don't have it. I have difficulties exhaling the air (which make me a lump in my throat). I have done some pranayama breathing (Hindu breathing exercises) which seems to help a lot. It is using the finger and closing/opening the nose. I stop this exercise because they said is not good for someone who breathes bad. Can you confirm this to me. I really need some help on this and have some hope that this problem can be solve. Thanks for listening From Mike: I would get my special including two different exercises and my manual. They will change your breathing more to what you need. Guaranteed. You may want to order it now as the site will be down for a few days starting tomorrow AM. Recommended Program [ Return to Top ^ ] HYPERVENTILATION: EXERCISE-INDUCED Dear Mike: Interesting article re Exercise induced Hyperventilation. I am 59 and up to age 58 I was able to run 2 miles in 1800.Suddenly one day I could not run 500 yards. I was on Atelenol and I went for Stress Ekg and Asthma test. Conclusion was asthma. Re-prescribed CA channel blocker. I do not use an inhaler but discovered that if I warm up (sweat) I can run. Could excess weight put pressure on diaphragm? and if this is indeed hyperventilation why could one not breathe into a paper bag to increase CO2 exhalations. From Mike: Yes, excess weight can cause breathing problems. Hyperventilation is largely a breathing balance issue. It is often misdiagnosed. To the degree our breathing is developed is the degree we do not hyperventilate. Change your breathing coordination with our Recommended Program, and the hyperventilation will most likely go away. Yes, weight can cause breathing restriction. Best you develop the breathing and the way I approach it, the weight often falls off. [ Return to Top ^ ] MOVEMENT AND BREATHING Breathing and movement are interrelated and in many way interdependent. Great dancers cannot be great singers. Great singers cannot be great dancers. GOOD...yes, great...no. What is YOUR choice? When you breathe out during contraction you must then let go completely and allow the breath to enter large deep and easily. Give it time. Develop that to the max now. [ Return to Top ^ ] RUNNING AND MOUTH BREATHING Question: I am 17, I run cross-country and middle distance track and I have been trying to figure out the best method of breathing. For a long time now I have been breathing in and out of my mouth. I have experimented with changing the speed of my breathing with different paces. I thought that the best way to breath would be to take longer breaths and to exhale fast. Is that a good way of breathing? From Mike: No

From what I have picked up the best way to breathe while running is in through the nose and out the mouth. No I have been trying to breathe this way while I run, but when I get tired I start breathing back through my mouth only. Is there anything I can do to correct this, or should I breathe a different way? It is better to breathe in and out thorough the nose. Try filling your mouth with water and run that way, slowly at first for you can get used to it. Or count clearly in a whisper as you run. Let me know how that works for you. Read ALL the pages of my website starting with exercise and FAQ and tips. Get my Rapid Breathing Development program. [ Return to Top ^ ] RUNNING & MOUTH BREATHING I know I am a little out of shape, but when I jog, I start breathing ok but even before I get to the 1/4 mile marker, I am breathing heavily. I try to inhale through my nose and exhale thru my mouth. I've been told that this keeps you from getting tired too soon. I'm good for a while and before I know it I'm breathing in through my mouth and exhaling through my mouth. It's somewhat embarrassing because I notice people turning around to see who's dying. Thanks for you help. From Mike: Whoever told you to breathe out your mouth was dead wrong unless it is VERY hot. Then it lets the heat escape faster. But if it is that hot, you should probably not be running in the first place. Practice when it is cool to warm and try to stay with nose breathing. Go slow and easy. Mike Recommended Program [ Return to Top ^ ] RUNNING AND SPORTS IN YOUTH Dear Mike: I am 14 years old and I play little league baseball. The other kids Say I don't run fast enough and I never get a hit that will take me past first base what are some tips on running faster and sprinting longer and faster. From Mike: I suggest you join the school choir (whether you think you can sing or not) and it will help you with your running. Take the BREATHING TESTS for hidden signs of breathing blocks. Purchase the Sports Performance program. Mike [ Return to Top ^ ] JOGGING AND BREATHING What is the proper technique for breathing while jogging? I tend to breathe heavily and I cannot take in too much air through my nose before I'm ready to exhale again when I jog I tend to breathe heavily From Mike: You need to free up your breathing BEFORE you jog. Read breathing lessons, then get my Sports Performance program and focus on the Strapping techniques and Optimal Breath Releases (OBRs). [ Return to Top ^ ] FREE DIVING -- BREATH HOLDING -- HEALTHY OR NO? Hi Steve and rest, Below is a re-post about breathing technique, originally posted on the US Free dive list in 2000. How would you experts describe the proper breathing technique. I think it's a highly personal thing that is shared, thus far, only because we are constrained by basic, common physiological limits. What our psychological limits are remain to be seen. Remember the sub4-minute mile: in 1954 Roger Bannister ran it--what was thought to be simply beyond human capabilities. And then, within one year 37 others did it; within 2 years, over 300 had done it). And then there's the paradigm-shattering Bob Beamon super-leap in the '68 Mexico City Olympics (29-feet, 2 1/2 inches -- beating the existing world mark by nearly two feet!). It has happened in other sports: quantum

breakthroughs that somehow potentiate the next level of achievement by others, and within a short time frame. There seem to be subconscious subcultures that invisibly govern huge territories in the mindscape. Surely there must be keys to this territory. There's got to be a breakthrough point out there for us too; something that will shatter the psychological barrier and pull us all along in it's slipstream. Safety and consciously, I hope, but also inevitably. It is a dangerous game though; we should make no mistake. And if it never happens, then surely what we have now is enough. After all, following the paradigm shift, there will simply be another to await. For me, for now, the game is fantastic and it is plenty. Let's smile within our arena and bask in the richness of the game we have discovered! Re-post follows: I've recently been asked by a tank diver friend about just how we do it: hold our breath for "so long." Certainly, we all do something specific and, perhaps, different from one another. Much of what I do I found hard to explain to him. I've since been trying to be more consciously attentive to exactly what I do: physically and mentally, both in preparing for the dive and during. I wonder how you all experience and think about just what it is we actually DO when we do what we do. My attempt to explain it to him follows. What's your way? The Prep: Start relaxed, floating on the surface. Notice any tension in my body and "let it go," like preparing for a meditation. Get to baseline breathing rate and once established, and fully recovered from the previous dive, I take several progressively deeper breaths, "breathing from the stomach up thru the chest" ala yoga exercises. Maybe 3-5 breaths like this. Then, about 5-7 very deep and more closely spaced breaths. The final, is the deepest and is held. Care is taken to NOT increase heart rate thru anticipation of the dive or other mental stimulants (control the limbic "primitive" brain). The Descent: Release snorkel, pike, raise leg, begin to drop. A few strong slow kicks to get to negative and then, depending on the type/depth of diving, glide down to depth or kick a bit more to get thru the top portion of the dive and down to depth. Mentally, as a natural low-level anxiety emerges, the game begins. The relationship towards the fear of air starvation becomes a game. It is "out there" in the consciousness, and I physically smile at it like an old acquaintance, neither friend nor enemy. The Hunt: Depending on what I'm hunting, of course, the down time, scanning, and positioning are different. What does not change is the sense that I have a limited time and that my breath-control strategy must match the hunt. Typically, I try and strike a balance between mental alertness and a calm that is all-pervasive. It's sounds contradictory but it somehow works. Eyes are alive, head turns slowly, legs move just enough to maintain balance. I notice the "feel" of the coolness of oxygen in my blood. I focus on the wealth of it, as if here, of all places on Earth, I have all that I need. I also feel a kind of physical drowsiness that I maintain, even when tracking and shooting a fish. The guiding principle: don't "electrically spike up" i.e., keep the neurons firing slowly, the electrical impulses steady (I'm a believer in lateral line sensitivity to this in our prey fish). The Ascent: Ultimately, my control of, or relationship to, these feelings begins to erode. It "becomes" time to go up. Small contractions may begin in my gut/diaphragm and throat. I may even hear an internal groan or two in my lower throat. I begin to smile and to redouble my relaxing "non-effort efforts." Anxiety, tension, and wasted movement are the tricksters that conspire to rob me of oxygen (and life). I smile at them, search for that relaxation, and rise. Kicking slowly, trailing my gun. Streamlined. I focus on the beauty of the light above (I'm often in kelp and it's akin to cathedral lighting in an old church) and I move towards it. If it's an easy one, and I feel I'm overreacting and not properly "in my head" I'll actually stop before the surface and wait a few seconds: training and reminding myself not to lose it, reinforcing that I've got more than I need, in most cases, and that panic is death. If it's a tough one and I feel I'm anywhere near the edge I will close my eyes for that last "shallow water blackout" interval (10-20 ft from the surface) and start doing math problems(!) to stay mentally alert but relaxed. The concentration, I think, keeps me from the risk of a passive letting go. (As a former ocean lifeguard, I've seen passive drowners: people who just let go and die. It's a very strange and real thing, and may be a potential within us all.) The Recovery: Once on the surface, I wait a moment (training, again) before I take that first breath. I take it and exhale immediately. Then I take another, which I hold for a few seconds before slowly exhaling. An old martial arts instructor of mine, who was a 4-time gold medalist in Tae Kwon Do in the Korean Army, used to drill us hard on breath control at just the time when we were heaving for air after an intense workout. I used to think him a sadist; but he was a master. Yes, there is a moment of dizziness on that first pause before releasing, but it soon fades and you can return to normally breathing and heart rate surprisingly

soon. The Afterglow: After a typical ( 2- to 4-hour) dive like this, my lungs feel expansive for days. I miss it all within a week and I know that I've got to get back to that place where it seems I have all that I need. JC From Mike: Interesting. It makes a lot of sense. I read Pipin's heart rate is around 60 usually and goes up to 100 when he hits the water and then down to 40 during descent. Having read the following I suspect that there is a distinct cross over where the length of time one can hold one's breath (conditioning) must be balanced against the oxidative stress and resultant potential for shortening the life span. You will be fitter but you probably won't live longer. Depends on your priorities. #176 Rapidly Improving Your Breathing Video [ Return to Top ^ ] SWIMMING UNDERWATER & FREE DIVING I enjoy going snorkeling, but I would like to be able to stay down longer. Are there any ways that I can increase the length of time I can hold my breath while underwater? From Mike: Learn to relax and increase your natural breathing reflex. Get my Sports Performance program. [ Return to Top ^ ] BREATH HOLDING WHILE FREE DIVING Question: what is the longest that a person can go holding their breath, safely. From Mike: It depends upon their volume and conditioning. Pipin Ferraras who holds the world free diving record can dive down to 435 feet below the surface of the ocean on one breath. This requires tremendous practice and exercises to offset the breath-holding restrictions that it invites. My sense is that he has trained himself to lower his metabolism, heart rate and breathing rate at will. Something similar to what Yogis do when they are buried alive for several hours or days. This takes years and years to perfect. I counsel against breath holding for most people as it blocks the breathing system including the speaking and singing voice. Recommended product [ Return to Top ^ ]

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