The Operational Workout Of the Day (OpWOD) is a series of exercises designed to develop your specific capacity to function as a Krav Maga practitioner – enhancing physical fitness, work capacity, explosiveness, and/or stress response. This week I’m focusing on breathing. Yes, breathing.
Breathing is one of the most important and under rated self-defense skills, and it’s a skill that can be substantially improved over time with practice. Breathing practice enhances your lung capacity, as well as conditions you to utilize breathing during stress events. This month, I’d like to encourage you to add the following efforts to your regular workouts.
At the end of your workouts, assume the high plank position. Think of this pose as similar to the starting position for push-ups:
- Hands directly below your shoulders
- Head and neck and spine are all neutral (aligned with your body)
- Suck your belly button in and up one inch (connect your upper/lower body)
- Feet are as wide as your hips
- Weight in the balls of your feet and toes
- Body is held in a straight line, arms fully extended
In this position, close you eyes and count your breathes from 1 to 10. The way you are going to breathe is important:
- Close your mouth; you’ll be using your nose to breathe in and out
- Constrict the back of your throat
- Take a deep breathe in, filling your lungs for a slow five count
- Slowly breathe out for a five count; expel all your air
- Pause and repeat
When done properly, your 10 breaths will have a total duration of 50-60 seconds.
Week #1: Do this drill X1 after every workout and for at least 5 days
Week #2: Do this drill X2 (twice) after every workout and for at least 5 days (one minute rest between the two sets)
Week #3: Do this drill X3 after every workout and for at least 5 days (one minute rest between the three sets)
Week #4: Set your timer for 15 minutes, do this drill for the entire session. Your goal is to stay in high plank the entire time or to minimize the number of times you fall out of plank and reset (if you fall out of plank position, take no longer than 15 seconds rest before you resume plank position).
Focus on your breathing and counting. When you mind wonders, bring your thoughts immediately back to breathing and counting.
OBJECTIVE: Focus, Deep Breathing, Stress Management, and General Fitness
You CAN do this!