The key muscle diaphragm of the runner

Coach Giorgio Rondelli explains how to use the diaphragm and diaphragmatic breathing to obtain a better sports performance and fight anxiety

Giorgio Rondelli

You almost always know the ins and outs of how ours works diaphragm, both in everyday life, but also in the context of a sporting performance, culpably takes a back seat. Instead it is the fundamental involuntary muscle in the phases of inhalation and exhalation. Able to move blood in circulation to a much greater extent than the heart itself. In the human body, the diaphragm separates the rib cage from the abdominal one. Finally it has a thin and flexible and also irregular shape. Much higher to the right where the liver is located. It is also called the muscle of “serenity” because if it works well, the whole organism benefits from it due to its ability to take in greater quantities of oxygen. But if he is well trained.

The diaphragm and sporting performance

With these premises it becomes all too easy to understand that having a rigid and contracted diaphragm greatly penalizes the sporting performance of a runner. Even because it also greatly affects your general posture. Here then is that a consequent incorrect breathing, in addition to causing other dysfunctions, see problems in the digestive system, produces a noticeable accelerated fatigue. With negative results especially in the context of a sporting performance. Maintaining a perfect functionality of the diaphragm is not, however, easy as it is it is not a muscle that can be stretched. For this purpose, practices such as yoga, specific breathing exercises, but also the intervention of an osteopath or a physiotherapist can serve.

Breathing

Then it is necessary distinguish between thoracic and diaphragmatic breathing. A practical way to feel the difference is to lie on your back with your right hand on your stomach and your left hand on your chest. If we want to train the diaphragmatic breathing then we should feel the right hand movement well. While that of the left hand should be imperceptible. In case of chest breathing exactly the opposite should happen. By exercising constantly, it is possible to manage diaphragmatic breathing in an optimal way. Great advantage for sports. Especially for combat states of anxiety which often penalize several athletes. Certainly a plus in the moments of crisis which are almost always there. Both in training and in competitions.



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