EVERY BREATH YOU TAKE
The way we breathe affects our technique. Almost all of us favor a side when swimming freestyle, so it’s easy to breathe to just one side whenever we enter the water. Single-side breathing is fine when racing (when we need more oxygen), but breathing to only one side can lead to an imbalanced stroke, an inability to respond to race conditions, or even injury.
Bilateral breathing can help. It balances your stroke (especially hip rotation), helps you swim straighter and builds breathing comfort to your weak side. Expanding your breathing optionscan also reduce anxiety during a race and is useful when the sun is in your eyes or you need to avoid a flailing competitor.
Triathlon icon Dan Empfield takes breath management to the next level with his creative technique of consecutive breathing. It’s easier to understand by watching someone do it, so check out this article and video.
Generally speaking, more oxygen means more speed. Experiment with these breath management techniques and see if it gets you closer to mastering the sport’s most intimidating discipline.