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SET BREATHING

Lateral breathing is used in Pilates - it keeps the abdominal muscles engaged, which helps to stabilize your core.

To get in rhythm of your breathing during your workouts, start to breathe through your nose. Here are some tips:

1. Each breath you take should go in and out through the nose.

2. The air you breathe in through your nose should go all the way down into your abdomen (belly), while maintaining a consistent inward pull of the abdominal muscles, during both inhalation and exhalation. This creates body awareness and helps you to focus your mind on your body.

3. Breathe relaxed, breathe rhythmically, and breathe mindfully.

Any exercise where the inhalation occurs during one part of the exercise and the exhale occurs in another part of the exercise would also be considered set breathing. These breathing patterns prevent you from holding your breath during the exercises, which is important as you need to keep oxygen flowing to the muscles in order to get all the benefits of your workout.

Set breathing is also used to activate the muscles - a dynamic exhale can activate the transverse abdominis which enables you to train these often difficult to train muscles and set the rhythm of the exercises. Set breathing is also incredibly useful to help set the correct pace of your workout and strengthen your respiratory muscles. This training will allow you to gain more control of your breathing.

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