Tennis is beneficial for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. In fact, people who work on tennis training more than three days per week have been shown to report better health in comparison to those who don’t.
Regardless of your reason for playing, nasal breathing can help you take your game up a notch.
How Nose Breathing Boosts Performance in Tennis
It may sound farfetched that your nose might play a role in your endurance, but in reality, nasal breathing on the court can help you power through every shot and play harder, for longer.
Benefits of Nose Breathing While Playing Tennis
Power Through Your Serves, Forehands, and Backhands
Ever wonder why professional tennis players sometimes grunt upon hitting the ball? Serena Williams does it for a reason. It’s because it helps players breathe through their shot.
Your follow-through has to be fluid and purposeful. Learning to breathe through it correctly can help you power through and hit with accuracy.
Do try this technique, inhale deeply and slowly through the nose before you serve or return the ball. Breathe out through the nose as you hit the ball and continue to breathe all the way through your follow-through.
Breath control via nasal breathing can also help you play at top power, for longer periods of time.
Play At Top Power, for Longer
Tennis games are typically lengthy. Best of three matches can last as long as ninety minutes, and best-of-five matches usually last well over two hours.
This can be incredibly tiring, leading to your endurance falling flat. Nasal breathing can help you stay sharp on the court so that you can play at your best for the entirety of every match.
How? Because less oxygen is required for respiration when you breathe through your nose when compared with breathing through your mouth.
Breathing through the nose increases carbon dioxide in the body to an optimal level. Since CO2 is the key to more efficient oxygenation, your cardiovascular system does not have to work as hard to supply your hard-working muscles with the oxygen they need. The scientific name for this process is the Bohr effect.
This also leads to lowered blood pressure, heart rate, and stress. Nasal breathing places the body in a parasympathetic state versus a sympathetic “fight or flight” state. In turn, you can play harder and longer with less effort.
While these benefits will certainly help you on the court, your nose can also play a hand in helping you outoff the court.
Benefits of Nose Breathing During Rest
Soothe Strained, Sore Muscles
Tennis elbow, wrist injuries, and soreness are all injuries that you will likely have to deal with after a match. What all these injuries have in common is that they are all results of inflammation.
Once you’re off the court, nasal breathing can help you recover from them more quickly. This is all because of nitric oxide’s role in breathing through the nose.
When you take in air through the nostrils, the nose produces nitric oxide, the miracle molecule responsible for redistributing blood flow and increasing arterial oxygenation. This combats inflammation caused by physical stress.
As a result, nitric oxide can help you recover more quickly from any strain your body has been put through on or off the court.
Try the following exercise before your next match to ace it with the help of nasal breathing.
Try This Nose Breathing Exercise Before Playing Tennis
Breathing exercises are just as important for tennis training as volley drills. Try the following breathing coordination technique from the book “Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art” by James Nestor to get your mind and body in the game.
Sit up in a straight, seated position. Take a gentle inhale through the nose. Once you reach the top of your breath, count from one to ten repeatedly.
Continue this into your exhale. Once you reach the end of your exhale, keep counting to ten in a whisper as your voice trails out.
Keep on counting until only the lips are moving and no sound is coming out, completely emptying the lungs. Inhale again and repeat up as needed up to thirty times.
For added assistance when nasal breathing, use SomniFix Strips to take out all of the guesswork.
Take Your Tennis Performance to the Next Level with SomniFix
Tennis is a game of strategy. It requires you to think on your feet (literally) and make decisions on the fly. Distractions can ruin your concentration.
To stay focused on your breath without having to worry about it, tape your mouth with a SomniFix Strip. See how long you can play with the strip on before you need to start mouth breathing.
Don't want to tape your mouth during a game? That's fine. Start by doing this during training sessions. Since nose breathing begets which will train your body to nose breathe as the default.
You can even use them at night to improve your sleep quality by promoting nasal breathing while you snooze. With SomniFix, the match point win is yours.
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