Here’s a great photo of the Romanian Olympic Rowing senior team training with POWERbreathe IMT devices at the end of their V02 testing, respiratory muscle training and psychology program.
Coach Dorin Alupei encourages sport-specific training, tailoring workouts for the effort needed within each type of sport, and in this instance, for rowing, where breathing can reach maximal levels.
The synchronisation between breathing and locomotion while rowing pushes breathing to its limits.
As a rower in a 2000m race you will be breathing twice per stroke; breathing out during the initial part of the drive (when the blade is in the water), taking a breath as you reach the end of the drive, breathing out again as you come forward and taking a small breath just before ‘the catch’. This small breath at the catch is vitally important in terms of allowing the optimal transmission of force from your body through the blade and into the water; the muscles of your torso brace against a partially inflated lung.
Your torso muscles include your breathing muscles, and it’s pretty difficult to brace your upper body and breathe at the same time, so you have to work your breathing in around the stroke rate.
POWERbreathe inspiratory muscle training (IMT) specifically targets the breathing muscles, and has been shown to:
- Improve rowing time trial performance by up to 2.2% - equivalent to slashing 60m in a 2km race
- Increase strength of inspiratory muscles by 30 – 50%
- Improve rowing performance and reduce breathlessness in competitive rowers after a POWERbreathe warm-up
The Romanian Olympic Rowing team shown above are all using POWERbreathe Plus Level 2 models.
Visit the POWERbreathe YouTube channel to watch our series of 3 videos in the playlist POWERbreathe for Indoor Rowing >