In a recent Q&A session with the National Basketball Players Association, American professional basketball player Kelly Oubre Jr. who plays for the Washington Wizards talked about the breathing exercises his skills coach has added to his training, saying,
“Breathing is big for me because I’m not really the best breather, so the exercise that he puts me through allows me to use my muscles more, allows me to open up. Breathing is a big deal as far as body movement, so that’s what I’m trying to work on in here.”
POWERbreathe Inspiratory Muscle Training is beneficial in all sports for improving the strength of the breathing muscles, including the diaphragm and intercostal muscles. When the inspiratory muscles tire they divert blood from other hard working muscles (like the arms and legs) which limits performance. But after training with POWERbreathe IMT whole body effort is reduced and endurance improved.
The diaphragm and other trunk muscles also play a key role in maintaining postural stability. During conditions of dual respiratory and postural demand, the respiratory drive overwhelms the postural demand; this may jeopardise postural stability and increase the risk of spinal injury.
So we can see how training the breathing muscles to become stronger and more resistant to fatigue can be beneficial in all sports not only for improving performance and reducing risk of injury, but also for postural demand, such as the twists and turns required in basketball.