POWERbreathe Trial – Melanie Ryding Week 6: Back up and kind of running

The forced go slow and new scatter brain that I seem to have developed is becoming very frustrating. I just can’t think or do as fast as I used to be able to do. Its like a need a pause button while my brain processes stuff. The number of times that I have had the ‘well?’ kind of looks from my husband – its getting quite regular.

He apologised the other day. He said he had become accustomed to me being so get up and go whizzing about, he just can’t get used to the 1st gear me at all.

Small steps

I can now walk without clutching the walls, which seems like a ridiculous thing to get excited about. But, it’s all small steps in the right direction. The permanent feeling of being on the deck of a ship in a storm at sea is beginning to abate. Ihave now been out on a bike, on the road, and round the scene of the accident. Another small thing ticked off.

I also have been swimming, I thought this would be a nightmare, but all went well.  At the end of this week, though, i managed to resume PowerBreathe training, right back at level 4 where i was before. I was quite impressed!

Concussion test, take 2

I was determined to do better than last week. I very quickly discovered that wasn’t up to me. David Sutton said I was drastically better at the thinking stuff than last week. I almost felt like I was myself again, at times. But, balance… nope. I still felt like a drunk without all the fun, when I was asked to balance with eyes shut.

A head injury is a head injury. You have no bearing on how it develops. All you can do is respond, rest, adapt and wait. Frustrating, but the result was better. I was given the go ahead to try gentle exercise. Better than nothing.

Up and running at last

I was keen to get a few things out of the way. My misconception about the running being potentially problematic was one of them. I still don’t trust this odd head of mine, so I decided to go to the gym, nice and safe. I started on the cross trainer, but the programme ended in 30 mins. I had the number 45 in my mind and I really wasn’t sure that 32 minutes of running was a good idea. So I climbed back on for a bit and stepped tentatively onto the running machine for my last 15 minutes. I began walking. My right leg still felt odd, heavier than the left, like it had all week. It felt like a dead leg. I was determined to crack this, so started jogging the slowest jog I think I may have ever jogged in my life. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that it was in fact ok, apart from the fact that my legs felt like lead. But I didn’t care. I was running, and I didn’t expect to be able to do that just inside two weeks after the accident. I was so pleased I can’t tell you. And, thankful for running machines. I didn’t need to get back to where I had started, I could simply climb off and sit down!

It’s a roller coaster ride in the world of head injuries.

Melanie Ryding


Read more about how POWERbreathe improves running performance.

POWERbreathe Trial – Martin Haines Week 3: Feeling pretty good

Another interesting week. I played golf for the first time in 9 months this week and I knew about it the following 2 days! I’m in pretty good shape and biomechanically I’m pretty good too, but playing golf at these speeds of movement in the swing is hard to reproduce in a gym, so stiffness is likely when you’ve not played for a while. The interesting thing for me was the thoracic (upper back) stiffness wasn’t as bad as normal and certainly didn’t last as long. With me being asthmatic when I was a kid, my rib joints (costo-vertebral joints) are susceptible when I do any sport (especially golf) and the only reason I can give for them not being as bad as usual is using the powerbreathe. Maybe they have helped my rib joints in some way?

On another note I’m still only on level 1, so I’ve a long way to go!!!

Hope that’s OK. Is their somewhere I can go to look at them and see the others’ blogs?

Keep moving freely
CEO Intelligent Training Systems

UK Biomechanics Coaching Association

POWERbreathe Trial – Melanie Ryding Week 2: European Championships

Week 2.
I went to the European championships this week. I did take the POWERbreathe with me, and hoped to be able to continue fitting in my 30 breaths twice a day, but knew it may be a logistical challenge. I did manage at least one of them per day.


I think it is still early days, but something must be happening, because I remember it hurting my chest on the very first use, and now on level 3 it seems to be becoming more managable. I no longer get the chest pain, and maybe next week will be able to move it up another level. I have not been training hard, so I would not have needed my inhaler anyway. Training is on taper / race mode so it will be interesting to see what happens when I return to track sprinting etc after the rest week. That is when I usually need the inhaler so I am looking forward to finding out if it will have an impact.


Well that is all for now but their will be more to follow 🙂

POWERbreathe Trial – Samuel Dallimore Week 2: Getting into the swing of things

This week I have been continuing on my progress in and out of the pool. Weights and core resistance work in the gym and then lots of hypoxic exercises in the pool. Hypoxic exercises in the context of swimming training involves lots of breath holding and having to swim whilst doing so. It can be really tough at times but by using my powerbreathe I’m starting to already feel my breathing muscles becoming stronger. I’m putting these amazing early gains down to the twice a day every day routine and the added fact that because I train at elite level my body has learnt to adapt/ recover to fitness and strength training faster and faster as time goes by. It’s meant that I’ve  been able to hold my breath longer and longer whilst feeling slightly more in control of my asthma. I used to react terribly to intensive exercise in most forms, losing all control of my breathing, but im starting to see that all that I need to do is to train and learn to control these muscles required to do so. The progress with this is slow but steady and the most important factor is that it’s continual, the harder I can push on the powerbreathe and remain in control the better and faster the results I can see in and out of the pool.