Certain activities can improve the efficiency of the lungs. When a person’s lung capacity is restricted, this can help minimize shortness of breath. The lungs enable for the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide, which is required for the body to operate.

Age, smoking, pollution, and other factors can all reduce the efficiency with which the lungs operate. Some medical conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma, can reduce lung capacity.

A person’s ability to adjust the amount of oxygen their lungs can contain may be limited. Breathing exercises, on the other hand, can assist alleviate shortness of breath caused by poor lung function.

This article discusses three exercises that can help reduce shortness of breath in people with chronic lung disease or respiratory infections.


Mouth breathing

Lip breathing can help keep the airways open for longer, allowing more air to enter and exit the lungs. Sit up straight if you want to perform lip breathing; excellent posture can assist improve lung movement.

Slowly and deliberately inhale deeply through your nose.

Keep your lips together – they should be almost touching, as if you were performing a “kissing” gesture.

Exhale via squeezed lips; the exhale should ideally be twice as long as the inhale.

Some people find it especially beneficial to concentrate on time, such as by breathing in for 5 seconds and expelling for 10 seconds. It can assist in keeping a watch that displays the seconds close.

For people who are physically inactive and may not exercise their breathing muscles as frequently, continuous lip breathing may have special benefits.


Abdominal breathing

The American Lung Association recommends this exercise to assist enhance the pace at which the lungs expand and collapse. Abdominal breathing focuses on strengthening the diaphragm muscle, which allows the person to take deep breaths. To complete the activity, follow these steps:

Place your hand or anything light on your stomach.

Slowly inhale through the nose, paying attention to how high the stomach is.

Exhale slowly through your mouth.

Breathe in through the nose, this time trying to raise the stomach to a higher level than in the previous breath.

Exhale, and attempt to exhale two or three times on every inhale.

Roll the shoulders back and forth and rotate the head from side to side on a regular basis to ensure that the exercise does not lead to upper-body stress.

For 5-10 minutes each day, practice belly breathing and lip breathing to improve lung function.


Intermittent training

If you have shortness of breath or shortness of breath when exercising, interval training may be a better option than continuous exercise.

Interval training includes alternating between brief bursts of high-intensity exercise and shorter bursts of low-intensity activity. For example, in a cycle, a person may attempt walking quickly for one minute, then gently for two minutes.

Similarly, a person may do a one-minute strength-training activity, such as biceps or lunges, and then walk for 2-3 minutes at a light speed. Intermittent training allows the lungs to recuperate before being challenged again.

When exercising produces shortness of breath, it’s a good idea to take a few minutes to catch your breath. Lip breathing can be beneficial until the shortness of breath passes.


Lung health tips

Although exercise cannot repair lung damage, it can help a person use their lungs to their full potential. Other strategies to enhance and maintain lung health include:

Quit smoking.

Drink plenty of water.

Maintaining physical activity

If a person develops signs of lung issues, such as shortness of breath during everyday activities, pain when breathing, or a persistent cough, they should see a doctor. The sooner a person receives treatment for any lung issues, the higher the chances of a positive outcome.


When do you do breathe exercises?

Breathing exercises, like aerobic activities, can assist improve heart health by making them operate more efficiently. Breathing exercises are recommended by pulmonologists for patients with COPD and asthma because they help maintain the lungs robust. When a person’s lungs are healthy, they should practice these exercises to gain strength, and they should continue the procedures if they are short of breath.

Deep breathing exercises may aid in the expansion of lung capacity. Deep breathing, for example, according to the British Lung Foundation, can help remove mucus from the lungs following pneumonia, enabling more air to flow. To do this exercise, take 5 to 10 deep breaths, then cough hard a few times, and repeat.

Other activities, such as lip breathing, can aid in the management of shortness of breath during respiratory disorders. According to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, this may assist with COVID-19-related shortness of breath. However, no studies have been conducted to examine the impact of breathing exercises on lung capacity in patients with COVID-19. There is no proof that it is a safe or effective approach to address the symptoms of this new illness at this time. Before beginning any new breathing exercise, it’s a good idea to consult with a doctor.

While breathing exercises can help persons with moderate respiratory symptoms, people with severe symptoms may require oxygen treatment or the use of a ventilator.

Anyone who is concerned about respiratory problems should consult a doctor.