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Fitness

Increase Lung Capacity With These 5 Breathing Exercises

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We all know that our body needs oxygen for survival. Every activity in the human body requires oxygen for proper functioning. The lungs play the role of transporting oxygen to every part of the body. And the speed with which lungs take in and let out air determine their capacity. Lung capacity defines the amount of air your lungs can hold. Or how well your lungs supply oxygen by removing carbon dioxide (CO2) from your blood. As we proceed towards the 30’s, the capacity of our lungs tends to decrease slowly. And often we experience difficulty in breathing. With a little daily care and few exercises, you can increase your lung capacity and ensure your body gets the oxygen it needs.

  1. Abdominal Breathing- One of the excellent exercises to increase lung capacity that involves the abdomen, which does most of the task when it comes to breathing. It is quite helpful for people who have COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.)

Steps to Perform-

  1. Relax and lie down on your back.
  2. Place one hand on your abdomen and the other one on the chest.
  3. Inhale through the nose, hold your breath, and breathe out through the mouth.
  4. Squeeze your abdominal muscles just to remove any leftover air from your lungs.
  5. Repeat this at least 10 times and then come back to a seated position.

Duration– 5-10 minutes every day.

  1. Numbered Breathing– This form of exercise is best to increase the pattern of counts that you breathe in and breathe out.

Steps to Perform-

  1. Stand straight with a little space between your feet.
  2. Take a deep breath through your nose and while breathing out purse your lips and exhale all the air out of your lungs.
  3. Repeat for 10 times to keep the oxygen flowing.
  4. Make a small change to this exercise by clasping your hands together and extending your arms in front of your chest.
  5. Breathe in through the nose and while breathing out through your mouth, turn towards your left and then to your right. Keep doing it as long as you exhale the air.
  6. Another variation that you can try is to stretch your elbows and put your fingers on your shoulders and inhale. Exhale while moving your arms in the form of circles.
  7. Now, try the abdominal breathing for one minute. And end the exercise with forceful breathing.

Duration– 5-10 minutes every day.

  1. Pushing Out– It is another great form of breathing exercise to increase the lung capacity to absorb oxygen.

Steps to Perform-

  1. Stand straight with your knees relaxed.
  2. Bend down at the waist while you exhale all the air from your lungs.
  3. Now stand back straight and breathe in the air through your nose.
  4. Fill your lungs with the maximum air they can absorb and hold your breath for at least 20 seconds.
  5. While holding your breath, raise your arms over your head. Once you finish counting till 20 seconds, slowly bring your arms down and exhale through your mouth and get back to the relaxed position.
  6. Repeat the same steps 4-5 times.

Duration– 2-3 minutes every day.

  1. Rib Stretch– This exercise involves breathing through lungs so that the ribs expand and contract when you inhale and exhale.

Steps to Perform-

  1. Stand straight with your back erect and exhale all the oxygen from your lungs.
  2. Start breathing slowly and hold the maximum amount of air in your lungs.
  3. Hold your breath for at least 10 to 15 seconds and then start exhaling slowly.
  4. Perform this exercise at least three times a day.
  5. Now place the hands on your waist and just do a few side bends alternatively.
  6. Raise your arms above your head. Bring your left arm back to your left waist and bend towards your left to feel the stretch on your right side. Then switch sides and repeat this a few times.

Duration– 3-5 minutes every day.

  1. Lung Strengthening Pranayama- Anulom Vilom as it is called in Hindi helps improve your lung capacity and also cure mental problems like depression, anxiety, and stress.

Steps to Perform-

  1. Close your eyes, sit in Padmasana (Lotus Position), keep your spine straight, and rest your hands on your knees.
  2. Close the right nostril with your right thumb and inhale slowly through your left nostril.
  3. Remove your thumb from the right nostril and exhale while closing your left nostril.
  4. Now, inhale through your right nostril and then close your right nostril and exhale from left nostril.
  5. Repeat this procedure at least 10 times.

Duration– 5-10 minutes every day.

As we age, we all need to perform these simple exercises to increase our lung capacity so that we don’t experience shortness of breath or fatigue.

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