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How to Expand Your Lung Capacity

by
author image Brian Richards
Brian Richards is an attorney whose work has appeared in law and philosophy journals and online in legal blogs and article repositories. He has been a writer since 2008. He holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from University of California, San Diego and a Juris Doctor from Lewis and Clark School of Law.
How to Expand Your Lung Capacity
A man is taking in a deep breath. Photo Credit AntonioGuillem/iStock/Getty Images

Lung capacity is important for athletes, musicians and individuals recovering from respiratory illness. Depending on your fitness level, you may use several different exercises to expand your lungs. You can perform lung exercises daily, but as with any exercise, do not push yourself too far beyond your comfort level. Overworking your lungs may result in shortness of breath, dizziness or loss of consciousness. Consult your doctor before beginning a lung capacity workout.

Step 1

Sit upright in a comfortable chair without touching the backrest. Place both hands on your chest and abdomen to feel them rise and fall as you breathe in and out.

Step 2

Breathe in as deeply as you can, feeling your abdomen rise as your lungs fill with air. Time your breaths so you are breathing in for three seconds, holding your breath for two seconds, then breathing out for three seconds. Repeat this process for 20 breaths.

Step 3

Breathe in as deeply as you can, this time feeling your chest rise as your lungs fill with air. Focus on expanding your chest rather than expanding your abdomen as you breathe in. Time your breaths so that you are breathing in for three seconds, holding your breath for two seconds, then breathing out for three seconds. Repeat this process for 20 breaths.

Step 4

Inhale by first concentrating on expanding your abdomen, then continue inhaling while concentrating on expanding your chest. Hold this breath for two seconds, then exhale, concentrating on emptying your chest first, then your abdomen. Continue this process for 20 breaths.

Step 5

Inhale deeply to fill your lungs completely, then exhale the full contents of your lungs into your empty balloon. You do not need to blow up the balloon all the way; focus on blowing as much air as you can into it with a single breath. The resistance of the balloon will help you strengthen and expand your lungs.

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