If you are going to improve your breathing and strength for diving, you will need to exercise by targeting groups of muscles. The pushup and pike abdominal is an exercise that has been found to be effective since it targets the abdominals and chest. Assisting muscles like the triceps and shoulders also benefit from this exercise. You will need an exercise ball to perform it.
There are other positions that will work on strengthening your back and shoulders thus preventing back and shoulder injuries. By strengthening your upper body, you are also training it to support controlled, relaxed and deep breathing which is necessary for diving.
Make Your Diving Better? Breathe Better!
Your exercise program should include deep breathing, especially when doing abdominal exercises. You will need to focus on the diaphragm, a muscle responsible for seventy five percent of all the air flow. Also target your intercostal muscles which are responsible for moving the ribs which account for the remaining 25% of air flow when breathing. You should also consider targeting the chest muscles, pectoralis major and minor, which are active when you inhale and exhale.If you are able to breathe properly, your muscles will remain oxygenated and this will make all the difference between endurance and fatigue.
Exercises to Strengthen your Torso
Here are exercises that can help and of course be sure to start with a 10 minute aerobic warm up:
- Ball Walk Outs – This exercise develops your lower back and abs, strengthening them so that they support your body. The ball should be under your thighs and hips. Extend arms forward under your shoulders and walk on your hands so that you roll the ball down your legs to your shins. Now reverse direction and be sure to keep your balance as you move the ball down the center of your body.
- Pushups – Using the ball to do these makes it easier. When you are at the bottom, your elbows should be almost at a right angle but slightly less. When you are at the top of the pushup, your arms should be fully extended. Be sure not to lock your elbows. Start with 5 reps and build up to 100 with time.
- Pike Crunch – In order to carry out this particular exercise, you need to already have a great foundation of overall body strength. You will be rolling the exercise ball up to your chest but using your feet. Do 10 reps or simply interchange it with a pushup. It strengthens your lower back, abdominals and upper body while improving coordination and balance.