Thursday, December 8, 2011
Why Not Try Some Weight Lifting For The Breathing Muscles?
Respiratory muscle training may not have been a part of your training program in the past, but that may change as you read on.
What is RRMST? Resistive Respiratory muscle trainers are hand held devices designed to strengthen the muscles of inspiration and expiration. These portable devices are easy to use and beneficial for anyone interested in developing power and endurance of their breathing muscles.
How Does it Differ From Incentive Spirometry? Following surgery or hospitalization for an upper respiratory infection, patients are often given an incentive spirometer. These devices are designed to help you to take a deep breath, but you are not working the muscles against resistance, and they are designed for inspiration only. You might find it useful to use your spirometer to measure the progress of your respiratory muscle training.
Why Add Respiratory Muscle Strength Training To Your Workout? The respiratory system was built for exercise, and yet, the respiratory muscles are often taken for granted. Respiratory muscles are the muscles responsible for filling and emptying your lungs, and like the skeletal muscles, the respiratory muscles can be strengthened with exercise. In a 1998 study looking at the effect of respiratory muscle exercise using a resistive device called a BREATHER®, investigators found that respiratory training increased breathing efficiency and exercise performance.
Who Could Benefit From Respiratory Muscle Strength Training? Healthy individuals and athletes could benefit from exercising the respiratory muscles, as well as elderly persons and individuals with pulmonary and neuromuscular diseases. With age, physical function declines, which influences the respiratory muscles, and just as other muscle groups within our body can become weaker the respiratory muscles also lose strength. Recent research has begun to examine the benefit of respiratory muscle training for persons with neuromuscular and neurogenic diseases such as Parkinson’s Disease and Multiple Sclerosis. ,
How Can Strengthening The Breathing Muscles Help Voice And Swallowing? Patients are sometimes surprised when I suggest that resistive respiratory muscle training be added to their voice or swallowing exercise regimen. Respiration, phonation (voice), and swallowing are all interrelated functions and highly dependent on muscle strength, coordination, and accurate timing of breathing and swallowing. Since we are always using the breath out (exhalation) for speaking, interrupting exhalation to swallow, and using the muscles of exhalation for cough effort and airway protection, it makes sense that strengthening the muscles of inhalation and exhalation may help one to: swallow at higher lung volumes, better time breathing and swallowing, improve cough effort, and use better diaphragmatic breath support for voice.
 Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 1998, Vol. 30, No 7, pp -1169-1172.
 Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2003. Jul;84 (7): 994-9. Effects of inspiratory muscle training in persons with Multiple Sclerosis.