Hydration and Breathing

Discussion in 'Health Tips for the Martial Artist' started by First Action, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. First Action

    First Action Orange Belt

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    Sufficient hydration and proper use of breathing techniques are often overlooked. The fact is that these two things are extremely important to sustain a healthy mind and body, especially when in physical training.


    Hydration
    Hydration of your body is extremely important whether you are doing physical activity or not. Most people will not experience the sensation of thirst until approximately one liter of water is lost, making thirst a very poor indication of when to drink. Some indications of being well hydrated may be that you need to urinate every two to three hours. Your urine should be clear and you should not experience a parched/dry feeling in your mouth. If you urine is yellow and smelly, you are under hydrated. Effectively, you should be ‘drinking for tomorrow’.


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    Approximately two hours before exercise, it is advised to drink 400 to 600 ml of water (approximately 2 glasses). During exercise, drink 150 – 250 ml every 10 to 15 minutes. After exercise drink 1.5 to 2 Liters. It is important to regularly replenish fluids lost through sweating, but sculling or gulping water is very ineffective and is more likely to give you a cramp during further exercise, as well as making you have to use the toilet more often. It is much better to take small sips. Also, if you drink sports drinks you should dilute them 50-50 with water.


    In general, you should aim to drink the cleanest water available. Food can be a great source of water especially fresh fruits and vegetables. Also, be aware that diuretic substances such as caffeine and alcohol will dehydrate you further.


    Breathing
    Breathing is the sustenance of life force. When you breathe correctly you will be able to train harder and recover faster. You will also feel more energetic and on a higher level.


    To get the most out of each breathe you should breathe through the nose. It enables the air you breathe in to be filtered more thoroughly before it enters your lungs. Breathe in slowly and deeply so that your lungs are expanded to their maximum. Use you diaphragm as a sucking pump and then expand your rib cage with the help of your shoulder muscles. Then, exhale with slow exhalations using mostly the diaphragm in a reverse action as a squeezing pump, until your lungs are completely empty. Before your next breathe, take a regular pause at the end of your exhalation as you normally would if not concentrating on breathing.


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    During the normal course of your day you will not be able to concentrate in breathing in this way, but if you practice just a few minutes each day, and any time you remember to through-out the day, then you will slowly condition your natural breathing pattern. A good time to practice is as part of and after your cool down after your workout.
     
  2. Uncle

    Uncle Blue Belt

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    The nose breathing is not just because of filtering the air. It also has to do with warming and moistening the air to maintain the moisture balance in your tissues. Anyone who lives in a cold, dry climate, (and I do) will tell you that if you breath through your mouth you will dehydrate faster.
     
  3. First Action

    First Action Orange Belt

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    Good to know.. thanks123
     

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