POWERbreathe and MTB Pro-team Elettroveneta Corratec

POWERbreathe Italy, Alphamed, have recently signed an agreement with Pro-team Elettroveneta Corratec, Italian Montain Bike, Cross Cycle Team. They were the first winning team in Italy for this competitive discipline.

Five athletes from four different countries make up the Elettroveneta Corratec team for 2013 – Ivan Alvarez Gutierrez, Soren Nissen, Kristian Hynek, Michele Casagrande and Enrico Franzoi.

Each member of the team will be using a POWERbreathe Plus to train their breathing muscles as breathing technique is an important aspect for optimising cycling performance on the trail and can greatly influence riding style. And as breathing can be a limiting factor to keep on pedalling, POWERbreathe breathing training will strengthen their breathing muscles to help them increase their stamina and endurance so that they can ride faster.

Because the lungs aren’t a muscle, they rely on the muscles surrounding them for their expansion and contraction. It’s this supporting structure that each athlete will need to strengthen and condition in order to appreciate proper, full breathing.

After using POWERbreathe for about 3-4 weeks, each member of the team should be able to call on their inspiratory reserve for that extra push at the end of the competition to get them through. With lung size varying from person to person, there are natural limits to lung capacity, however you can influence the total lung capacity that you actually use; your vital capacity.

When you breathe all the air out from your lungs, what’s left is called residual volume, or ‘stale air’, and it remains in your lungs. Too much of this is unhealthy. By using POWERbreathe to exercise the breathing muscles, each member of the team will be strengthening their lungs’ supporting structure and improving their vital capacity (the usable portion of their lungs) and maximising their ability to breathe.

Alphamed will also be presenting the Elettroveneta Corratec, Italian Montain Bike, Cross Cycle Team with a POWERbreathe K5 with Breathe-Link software which will offer:

  • Real-time breathing measurement and analysis
  • Import and export of .bre files (breathing file extension) for data sharing
  • Real-time, live test feedback graphical display with enhanced visual feedback
  • Detailed, simultaneous plotting and analysis of data
  • Detailed high resolution records of each session
  • Creation of personalised breathing training sessions
  • Automatic warm-up
  • Automatic cool-down

The team will also be using their POWERbreathe before each competition to warm-up their inspiratory muscles, alleviating the feeling of breathlessness at the start of the competition. Research has shown that a standard pre-exercise warm-up routine fails to prepare the inspiratory muscles (breathing muscles) for the rigours of exercise, and laboratory trials on competitive rowers showed that a POWERbreathe warm-up significantly improved rowing performance and reduced breathlessness.

And for recovery afterwards the team will be using their POWERbreathe to speed lactate clearance, as a POWERbreathe cool-down can help speed lactate clearance even more effectively than a traditional active recovery strategy.

Alphamed met up with the five members of the Elettroveneta Corratec, Italian Montain Bike, Cross Cycle Team earlier this month to talk to them all about POWERbreathe, the research, and how best to implement POWERbreathe into their daily training.

Read more about why you should include POWERbreathe as part of your cycling training, however if you’re a cyclist and are already using POWERbreathe, then please leave a comment here as we’d love to hear about how you feel you’ve benefited from this breathing training.

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