Cadence Breathing
What is a Breathing Cadence? Breathing Cadence, is simply the inspiration and expiration of the lungs to the ‘tempo’ [cadence] of the right or left arm or right or left foot movement.

For example; breathing in [ inspiration ] and breathing out [ expiration ] when the right foot touches the ground during jogging or running. This breathing technique effects the body functions much like the timing sequence of a automobiles ignition system.

There are different types of breathing cadences that can be used during actual physical performance. The most popular one is breathing in and out to the cadence of the individuals dominant foot side, that is, either your right or left side depending on the individual. The initial breathing cadence starts with the runner’s dominant foot, in many persons this would be the right foot, strikes the ground. Simply put, each time your foot touches the ground you will either be breathing in or breathing out.

The running stride segmented

1. First point of contact is often the heel strike
2. Your second point following the natural roll of the foot is mid-stance. This would place your foot directly below your body’s centre of gravity.
3. The third point is where the foot first leaves the surface (toe lift-off)

These three points of foot stride reference exist for both feet. However, which foot you cadence breath off of is your choice, depending on the physical needs of your body and the running surface. Up until now we have suggested that you initially learn and run using the heel plant as the point of reference to cadence breath off of. That is to say; to perform your breathing in and breathing out when the heel of the chosen foot first comes in contact with the surface [ heel strike ]. After you feel comfortable with heel strike cadence breathing we suggest that you take the next breathing learning step. This step is learning to breath off of anyone of the three positions in the step.

Cadence breathing may be counted off from anyone of the above three foot positions. That is to say; breathing in and out from:

1. Heel strike
2. Mid-stance or
3. Toe push-off

Varying the point of air intake [ inspiration ] or exhaust [ expiration ] can be beneficial to your performance if mastered correctly, and in the same instance detrimental if not done correctly. With cadence breathing you can vary the point of air intake or exhaust depending upon the air demands placed upon the body by its physical exertion. So, by breathing at key foot positions in your running stride you can drastically change your performance. It may take time to master this however once you do, you will see significant changes in your performance.

Once you adapt and find that the breathing technique is working without your conscience effort you will know that the body has made the transition to utilising it fully with the natural movement of the muscles.

More information to follow under Breathing Tips