SXS Wellness Tip: Stay Calm and Breathe On
Just the mention of meditation sends some people running for the hills. The idea of sitting on a cushion and floating off into the yogic universe is not appealing to many people, especially kids and teenagers! Nevertheless, study after study shows that meditation, yoga and Qi Gong can reduce stress levels and leave you healthier and living longer. Here is the good news, you DON’T have to do a specific practice; all you have to do is BREATHE in DEEP.
A study published in Frontiers in Psychology showed that participants who were taught how to breathe deeply into their diaphragm (so not up into your chest!) over the course of 20 training sessions saw their cortisol (stress hormone) levels drop more, versus the controls who were taught deep breathing, but not coached, for the 20 sessions.
The take away for sport performance: the more relaxed you are (i.e. less stress hormone, cortisol) the better you can focus on the race. One simple way to calm the mind is to breathe deeply. Start slow and build your practice, one minute for the first week, two for the second and so on until you are taking in deep belly breaths for 5 minutes a day, in any position, in any place, just stay calm and breathe on!
Tips provided by SXS Fitness:
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