Don't hold your breath...

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Postby Sonnon » Tue Jan 02, 2007 10:41 pm

http://www.explosivelyfit.com/coach.htm

http://www.brianmac.demon.co.uk/articles/scni21a1.htm

Danny M. O'Dell, MA. CSCS*D wrote:While under the heavy bar it is easy to get into the habit of holding your breath during the execution of the lift. Holding your breath does help in moving the heavy iron as it stabilizes your core but it comes with a cost to your overall health. And that cost is a tremendous increase in your blood pressure. High blood pressure has been known to directly cause damage to your body by raising the risk of having a stroke, causing a heart attack, damaging your kidneys and increasing the risk of a blood vessel aneurism. Any of which will cause a quick cessation of your lifting for the day.




http://www.strengthfit.com/modules.php? ... icle&sid=6

Michael Phelps, M.D. wrote:High blood pressure increases the risk of heart failure, renal failure, kidney disease, stroke, and myocardial infarction.



In evaluating the effects of chronic weight training on cardiovascular function it is necessary to be specific as to the type of lifting in question. Weight training consists of three major divisions: bodybuilding, Olympic-style lifting, and power lifting. All three differ in goals, training methods, neuromuscular response, and cardiovascular response. Basically, how one lifts determines the acute and chronic effects of weight training on cardiovascular function.



Olympic-style lifting places the least strain on the cardiovascular system, compared with other types of lifting. Due to the technical nature of the snatch and clean and jerk, full-body movements that are executed quickly with no prolonged breath holding, there is no sharp rise in blood pressure, in contrast to power lifting. Elite Olympic-style lifters (excluding heavyweights) are noted for having a high level of cardiovascular fitness (VO2 max in the low to mid 60’s). The regular performance of high repetition (8 to12) power snatch and power clean using light loads for general bodybuilding purposes has a positive effect on both functional strength and cardiovascular fitness.



Bodybuilding, especially in the form of interval weight training and circuit training, has proven effective in developing combined strength and cardiovascular fitness. Cardiovascular improvement is related to selection of exercises, training intensity, duration of the rest periods between exercises, total number and frequency of training sessions, and initial fitness level. Clinical research indicates that circuit training can produce a significant increase in lean body mass, strength, cardiovascular endurance, and a lower diastolic blood pressure in both healthy and borderline hypertensive individuals. The cardiovascular response to circuit training suggest that this is a safe and acceptable form of exercise for cardiac patients. Using moderate resistance, circuit weight training may be a useful anti-hypertensive therapy.



Power lifting. Of the three forms of weightlifting, power lifting has the greatest potential to produce exercise-induced hypertension. To gain insight as to how internal stress develops within the heart when performing a heavy power lift (bench press, squat or dead lift), we need to look at the acute functional cardiovascular dynamics that occur during lifting.



When a heavy squat, bench press or dead lift is executed the heart is forced to work against a high after-load pressure. After-load pressure develops in response to high arterial blood pressure resulting from a sharp increase in muscle perfusion pressure due to obstruction of blood flow when muscles contract with force. Obstruction is virtually complete when the force of muscle contraction effort reaches 80 percent of maximum. How hard the heart must work during a lift is determined to a great extent by the arterial pressure required to drive the blood through to the muscle tissue that is contracting the hardest. For example, in both power lifting and functional isometric lifting, the muscle tissue pressure upon the arteries is very high, thus requiring a very high perfusion pressure, which, in turn, effects a large increase in blood pressure. The long-term effects of heavy lifting increases left ventricular thickness and mass with no increase in cardiac output. This is a physiological condition, not a pathological one.



Other factors influencing an increase in blood pressure during heavy lifting are prolonged breath holding, including the Valsalva maneuver ( making a forcible expiration against a closed glottis), and wearing a lifting belt, super suit, and knee wraps. Combined, these factors bring about a sharp increase in intra-thoracic pressure from 80 to 200 mm Hg or more. This increased pressure is transmitted through the thin walls of the great veins: venous blood return to the heart is thus severely decreased. The result is a surge in systolic and diastolic pressure (reading up to 400/300 mm Hg have been recorded). Sharp increases in blood pressure of this magnitude is not seen in Olympic-style lifting, as there is no sustained breath holding.



While the acute effects of heavy power lifting on cardiac function poses no health threat to an aerobically fit lifter with normal systolic blood pressure (below 140 mm Hg), they may have serious implications for those with normal diastolic pressure and borderline systolic hypertension (140 to 154 mm Hg). In weightlifting induced hypertension, when the resistance against which the left ventricle must pump (after load) is chronically elevated the cardiac muscle hypertrophies. The total oxygen consumption of the heart, already increased by the work of expelling blood against a raised pressure increases further because there is more cardiac muscle. Therefore, any decrease in venous blood flow to the heart has more serious consequences in borderline hypertensive lifters than is does in normal individuals.



According to The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, individuals with borderline hypertension are at greater risk for strokes, heart disease, and kidney failure than comparable people with a normal systolic pressure. Power lifters in the heavier body -weight classes (90 kilos and higher) with systolic hypertension must be considered to be at the greatest risk. The combination of anabolic steroid and growth hormone usage, excessive muscular bulk, and lack of minimal cardiovascular fitness (VO2 max below 35 ml per kilogram of body weight) places such a lifter in the high risk category for heart disease. A study reported in the journal of Hypertension (June 1999), involving 19 male athletes, linked a 12 month weightlifting program designed predominantly to optimize muscular strength, with stiffing of the proximal aorta and leg arteries, which contributed to a higher cardiac after load. The net effect was an increase in resting systolic blood pressure. During the study the subjects refrained from participating in aerobic exercise. The results of the study point out the need for athletes to cross-train for strength and aerobic fitness.



The trouble with heart disease is that the first symptom is often hard to deal with: sudden death.




http://nsca.allenpress.com/nscaonline/? ... -4295(1999)021%3C0054:TIOTVM%3E2.0.CO%3B2

Childs, John D. wrote:ONE ON ONE: The Impact of the Valsalva Maneuver During Resistance Exercise

Issn: 1533-4295 Journal: Strength and Conditioning Journal Volume: 21 Issue: 2 Pages: 54-55

Authors: Childs, John D.

Article ID: 10.1519/1533-4295(1999)021<0054:TIOTVM>2.0.CO;2

Clients are especially at risk for abnormally high blood pressure during a Valsalva maneuver. Exercise-induced arterial hypertension from the Valsalva




http://www.fitness-health.co.uk/blood-pressure.htm

The Valsalva Maneuver or holding the breath while performing an exercise can increase blood pressure to extremely high and dangerous levels. Blood pressures of nearly 400/350 have been recorded during such actions. Existing aneurysms can burst, blood vessels in the eye can rupture and even retinas can tear (Valsalva Retinopathy). This is a common and dangerous practice. It is also the job of the trainer or spotter to recognize when the breath is being held and bring it to the exerciser's attention immediately.




A simple google search will produce an enormous volume of research...
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Postby Sonnon » Tue Jan 02, 2007 10:50 pm

Too often seniors argue over things that only focuses attention on the mundane and insignificant areas of what we are supposed to be teaching. Faulting the Uechi-Ryu majority because they don't breath the way others do is silly, especially since fit athletes spend so little time worry how they breathe during intense physical exertion.


I would need to see research here proving that fit athletes spend "little time" on breathing. In the decades of research I've done, I've never encountered such a statement from professional to amateur level.

I've worked as US National Coach for several years in one sport, competed at an international level myself in several sports, spent thousands of logged hours with national and Olympic coaches from various countries in other sports as well.

The one common feature to all of the athletic disciplines I've encountered with those other professionals in the field is this:

Breath is the single most central feature of a technique in any physical activity.

Of course no athlete worries about breathing DURING performance. That's like saying that someone worries about their drawing technique during a gunfight. Practice before performance is the guiding doctrine of every discipline I know of.

And practicing the integration of efficient breathing with efficient movement and structural alignment is the goal of all physical disciplines.
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Postby Stryke » Tue Jan 02, 2007 11:05 pm

This is a common and dangerous practice. It is also the job of the trainer or spotter to recognize when the breath is being held and bring it to the exerciser's attention immediately.


I find a lot of confusion on the forums over Valsalva and pressurised breathing and the difference between that and an active exhale .

IMHO very different .

the point above being very important IMHO

while not a power lifter I`ve acheived at stages some reasonable lifts , and never have taught or been told to hold my breath .

I think as with anything theres a balance and extremes are the usual culprit .

interesting statistics on using belts suits etc and there effect on blood pressure , Ive always been a fan of lifting raw .

powerlifitng of course has many health issues , there must of course be dietary and drug issues when considering longevity .

lots of good information Scott , thanks for sharing , and good to see you on the forums 8)
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Postby Bill Glasheen » Wed Jan 03, 2007 2:10 am

I'm happy to see this thread evolving as it has. 8)

A few comments...

  • I intentionally refrained from any posting for a while. Being on business had something to do with it as well. I'm actually doing this post in a Boston hotel room. :)
  • Welcome, Scott! Good to have you around.
  • I really liked your post, Neil!
  • I'm curious as to the motivation for the studies you cited, Scott. I enjoyed reading all of them, BTW. :) FWIW, I've thrown my weight belt away, gotten rid of my knee wraps, and have adopted many Olympic lifts in my routines. As they say, great minds think alike! And my blood pressure has dropped from 130/85 as a teenager to 110/60 at age 52, so I must be doing something right. One anedote among thousands...

    But....

    Why all the posts on Valsalva, Scott? I don't understand. Nobody here (who knows what they are doing) is doing Valsalva.
.

Part of the problem - and part of my plea for us all to ask more of ourselves - is the discipline of precise language and a deep understanding of the systems we are working with. At least with the studies Scott cited, I understand exactly what is being discussed and can appreciate the issues of concern.

My language and the language of the common practitioner on the street may be different. And both those languages may be different from a superb practitioner from the past who was effective but had anachronistic ways of communicating what was being done. IMO it's perfectly valid listening to and trying to decipher such language. Without an open mind to "ancient ways", we wouldn't have the understanding of NSAIDs that we do today. When you take your ibuprofen, you can thank the medicine doctors of the past who knew to give extract of the willow bark. When you take an antibiotic, you can thank Native Americans who knew to use fungus to treat a wound.

There's no attept to disparage here. Quite the contrary, this is just a gentle plea to get all to appreciate where we can go with the collective resources we have to take our understanding of human performance to the next level.

Anyhow, keep on keeping on, guys. I'm enjoying this. I'll find a few times on this business trip to stop on by and see what you all have created.

- Bill
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Postby Bill Glasheen » Wed Jan 03, 2007 3:15 am

By the way, Scott, I was a bit skeptical about the findings in many of the publications you cited on health and weight lifting of various types. As you of course know, these aren't randomized, controlled trials, but rather epidemiologic studies. And there's that damned confounding influence of anabolic steriods, growth horomone, etc.

But... Compelling nonetheless. 8)

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Scott..

Postby gmattson » Wed Jan 03, 2007 1:56 pm

Good to see you on the forums again. Regarding the quote:

Too often seniors argue over things that only focuses attention on the mundane and insignificant areas of what we are supposed to be teaching. Faulting the Uechi-Ryu majority because they don't breath the way others do is silly, especially since fit athletes spend so little time worry how they breathe during intense physical exertion.


This was a poorly worded statement that is causing me to cringe as I re-read it.

A poor attempt to cram a dozen thoughts into one paragraph without a careful re-read.
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Postby Van Canna » Wed Jan 03, 2007 3:13 pm

Hi Scott_ I was hoping you’d jump into this breathing fray _ as it is really your battleground. Smile. Happy New Year my friend.

I would need to see research here proving that fit athletes spend "little time" on breathing. In the decades of research I've done, I've never encountered such a statement from professional to amateur level.


Could not agree more Scott.

My experience as a fit Athlete in national rowing competition, in soccer competition as a striker, and as a shot putter in track and field_ was heavily grounded in ‘intelligent breathing dynamics’ as fostered by the excellent coaches.

But George is probably referring to a karate ‘fit athlete’ who apparently is held to a different standard because of the ‘Chinese breathing methods’ _ who knows_

These Chinese breathing methods continue to confuse. We had Master Hur at summer camp a few years back[the national Chinese Wushu champion, who demonstrated the exhale with his strikes_ impressive power.

And Toyama sensei reports that Kanbun exhaled with every movement in his Uechi.

I believe you also mentioned you have recommendations for proper breathing in the practice of martial arts. :?:

Bill is correct that Uechi breathing does not Valsalva_ But my interest lies in what you wrote a while back
Now, the Valsalva Maneuver is the physiological effect of survival arousal upon the metabolism.


Could you elaborate on why this happens?

With this in mind, what breathing entrainment procedures should be practiced during martial arts practice to minimize this dangerous effect of survival arousal?


I have read some of your writings on this
Respiratory retention is result of anxiety induced, fear-reactivity. The Soviets did a great deal of research on this topic for the refinement and enhancement of their sportsmen (sport was a political platform for the former USSR).

Upon intimate contact with an aggressor, initially a human organism excites (mobilizes) to such a high degree that the physiological arousal (sort of like a chemical cocktail inside you) is too great and the fear-reactivity mechanism "seizes the engine". With mat-work, done in slowly increasing velocity, this mechanism can be used for advantage.

Fear is positive and productive, but the seizing of the fear-reactivity mechanism (panic) can cause spastic movement behavior resulting in huge losses of energy. However, when the mechanism engages it can be used to double and triple your normal strength output through concentrated effort.
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And this from a fighter

Postby Van Canna » Wed Jan 03, 2007 3:29 pm

My exhales (giving or receiving) are more along the lines of the muay thai "yeeeshhhh". It may be psychological, but when I'm really whaling on the bag or pads, loud exhales help me focus.

As you guys know, some type of exhale (loud or quiet) is necessary on every punch/kick. When executing a combination of strikes, most beginners hold their breath through the whole combination, thereby unnecessarily fatiguing themselves. If you can remember to breathe out, your body will automatically breathe back in for you.

You can practice the stomach tightening by yourself anywhere (in the car, at work, at school, etc). Even in the mall, tighten up and stay tight whenever someone is in your "red zone" and when they're gone, relax until the next person walks by.

Think of the torso between the bottoms of the ribs to the tops of the pelvic bowl as a slinky, one of those big loose springs kids get for Christmas.

Take a long hot dog balloon and blow it up inside the slinky.
The slinky becomes rigid and strong instead of floppy and soft.

However, the internal pressure puts a lot of stress on the diaphragm, especially where the esophagus and aorta pass through from thorax to abdomen; as well as the throat, glottis and vocal cords.

Therefore, one forces air through these openings, restricting the flow enough to keep the torso pressurized and at the same time allowing emergency over-pressure relief.


Pressure should maximize at the instant one makes forceful contact, or at the moment one moves the waist as a unit in a turning movement.

A person who uses weights in training can also intuit the moments of greatest stress and force air through the small openings of throat and lips.

Some forms use the voice box and vocal chords as part of the valve mechanism.

Additionally, one can use the voice almost as a weapon, as atemi, as one can also use facial expressions to strike the emotions of the adversary.

I think in the street this would have the effect of directing your "energy" or "rage" against your opponent as well as somewhat intimidate your opponent -
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Re: Don't hold your breath...

Postby Rockalbert » Sat Dec 23, 2017 10:46 am

I don't much about the techniques but breathing on striking happens naturally with me.
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Re: Don't hold your breath...

Postby Van Canna » Sat Dec 23, 2017 3:48 pm

It is the natural thing to do.

It can increase your ability to produce more explosive movements. Just watch a power lifter or shot putter. They always exhale when performing their explosive movements.

Exhaling means that you will inhale as well. Meaning, you will be getting rid of the old carbon dioxide and inhaling more oxygen.

You'll get much much more tired while punching and holding your air in.

Another reason for that fatigue, aside from lack of oxygen, is added muscle tension.
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