We speak a lot about how important it can be to use conscious breathing techniques to relax and re-center our minds and bodies. However, sometimes we need an energy boost in our day.
Typically, to combat the fatigue of the day, we’ll reach for an energy drink or coffee to get us through those last few hours in the office or at home – but what if there was a different way to get a boost of energy without enduring the inevitable pitfalls of consuming caffeine?
Using the correct breathing technique can boost your energy levels while giving you improved productivity without suffering the crash that typically comes after when using a stimulant like coffee.
In today’s blog, we’ll be exploring the power of breathing and how using conscious breathing techniques can give you a vital boost in your daily energy levels.
Heightened Breathing, Heightened Senses
One of the best ways to observe, in real-time, the powerful effects of breathing techniques on overall performance is by watching the sport of Rugby Union. Specifically, try watching the New Zealand National Team, known as the “All Blacks” for their attire, just before starting a game against another team.
When the All Blacks begin a game, they choose to engage in a Maori pre-battle ceremony known as the Haka. In addition to being a show of intimidation and cultural pride, the Haka is a powerful tool for the All Blacks because it requires them to engage in a particular form of breathing.
Powerful and frequent inhales and exhales through the nose and mouth are huge components of the Haka, allowing the players to boost their energy levels massively as the game is about to begin. Little wonder then that the All Blacks are hugely dominant in rugby.
The science of the Haka, and many other conscious breathing techniques, boils down to the effect that short, intense, and full breathing can have on the parasympathetic nervous system - or our fight or flight response.
Typically, breathing exercises often try to quell overactive nervous systems, allowing us to relax and recharge our bodies. However, when trying to get that extra bit of focus and energy for the day, activating our parasympathetic nervous system can be beneficial, especially when done in a controlled manner.
Invented by Dominique Williams, the 5-3-3 technique was designed for sports applications to focus professional athletes before engaging in games/matches/heats.
The 5-3-3 technique is designed to maintain focus while improving the user's energy, making it ideal for breaks between strenuous activities or to combat dips in productivity when working.
The 5-3-3 method is as follows:
- Take five deep breaths through the nose and out the mouth, ensuring you completely fill and release the air in your body.
- Now, take three quick breaths by again inhaling through the nose and exhaling through the mouth.
- Finally, take three more breaths, inhaling through the nose and exhaling through the mouth. However, on the exhale, allow yourself to do so loudly and vocally.
- Repeat the process for another 2-3 minutes or many times as desired.
For more information regarding how to manage your breathing for a more effective lifestyle, visit our other blogs here at The Exhale to get the latest tips and tricks. For free guided breathing exercises that you can take anywhere, try out the Breathwrk app here.
And remember Breath Better, Live Better.