Breathing Techniques to Try When You Are In a Choke or Hold

Updated on 5 minute read
Picture of Chris Chow in Ring

When we look at the things that we do unconsciously, we think of breathing and thinking. Both these functions are very important for us to sustain and they are very important for day-to-day life as well. Technically breathing is the first thing that we learn as a child and it stays with us till we diet, however, most people never understand that there is a proper way to breathe. We have seen people using meditation and yoga as a way to help with breathing but that doesn’t focus only on the breathing it technically links the physical activity with the breathing. It helps you know how you need to breathe when you are working out.

Similarly, when we talk about MMA, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, or other combat games one thing that we will keep hearing is the breathing technique and its importance. Even if we see the exercise plan, we will see that the instructor keeps telling us to breathe properly and let the air fill our lungs, hold and then start the exhaling process. You need to be very conscious of your body movement, your rib cage movement, your lungs, and your respiratory system in general. Another important thing is to learn how to inhale through the nose and exhale through the mouth. Most people do not use the mouth for breathing at all, on the contrary, there are a few people who only use the mouth while breathing. Both these techniques are wrong and must be addressed.

2 Athletes Fighting - Breathing

With the help of this article, we will mainly focus on the ideal breathing technique that you need to use in your day-to-day life. Apart from this, we will also discuss the breathing process that will help you calm and take control of your game even when you are in a passive or submissive position. Usually, it happens that people panic and they do not focus on breathing which only makes them panic worse.

Ideal Breathing Techniques and Exercise to Help You with Breathing 

When we talk about breathing most people do not take it seriously because we unconsciously breathe and no one thinks it is that important. However, Harvard health in a recent study explains that most people only use 40% of their breathing capacity of lungs. We hardly fill our lungs and just keep doing it repeatedly till it becomes a habit. Our breathing process is very important and there is a technical explanation behind it. When you breathe, you need to let the air fill your lungs and let your rib cage rise. Once done, you need to hold it and then let go. For the inhaling, you need to use your nose because the nose has small hairs that will filter your air and the environment of the nose helps in warming the air as well. Eventually, when you let out the air, you need to do it through your mouth so that moist air can help prevent your mouth from drying. For the overall exercise and learning to breathe, you need to practice yoga, meditation, and muscle relaxing technique. These exercises will help you sync your body movement with the breathing process.

How to Breathe When You Are In Choke or Hold?

People usually get conscious when instructors tell them how to breathe when they are in a choke but a hold doesn’t put pressure on the neck but still has the same impact on the body. People when in submissive conditions panic very easily and this has an impact on their physical condition, and their psychological condition. To get out of the physical and psychological stress they need to use their technical knowledge. Most people get traumatized and they panic only to make this worse. Your command over your body, breathing, and overall understanding of the situation are very important.

Picture of Fighters in Ring - Breathing Techniques in Choke

Starting with the physical condition, when you are in a submissive position and there is a giant guy lying on your chest it automatically gets difficult for you to breathe. This is the reason you need to prepare yourself in advance, work on your abs and your breathing habits. Your physical condition matters a lot. If you have worked on heavy exercises they will eventually help you improve your condition and no matter how heavy a guy or how tight a choke might be you will be able to retain your breathing.

The second and most important part is the psychological condition. We have seen that when people are in the dominant condition they get very active however when they get dominated by their opponent they stress out and panic very easily. As a sportsman, it is very important to keep in mind that you have to keep a grip on your emotions. If you feel stressed or claustrophobic try to meditate with your workout so you stay ready for all kinds of stressful conditions.

Picture of Girl in Blue Breathing

The third part is a little technical because you need to know how you are going to use the position of your opponent for your own personal advantage. Start by breathing hard when you are on your back but as you try to lift your opponent and shove him to the side start breathing lightly. Then as you gain control, you will see improvement in breathing.

Bottom Line

To sum it all up, when you are trapped at the bottom, you need to understand the position. Most people when in the bottom position usually have too much weight on themselves that they find it hard to breathe. This limits their energy and they start to waste their energy by panicking and not controlling the situation. When you are in such a position, your main goal needs to be that you are going to hold your position so you do not panic and do not exhaust yourself by randomly moving your body without aim. Your main goal should be to look at the movement of your body and how you can use the position of your opponent for your own benefit. When in a submissive position, you need to let the air get into your lungs and have maximum oxygen reach your lungs. Make sure your head is still in the game and once you get back your thoughts only then think about controlling your opponent. You need to understand the physical condition, psychological condition and then make an adjustment according to your technical learning.

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