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Sport Performance & Breathing

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The Buteyko Method is a corrective breathing program

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Motocross (Scrambling) Lactic Acid & Forearm pump

Motocross (Scrambling)

Back in 1986 at the age of 17 I started racing Motocross (Scrambling). The first meeting I raced in, I remember thinking how hard I was gripping the handle bars of the bike during the race I was not able to keep it up for long until fatigue crept in (Lactic Acid). I trained hard to try and relieve the problem but was never able to get rid of it, it seemed the harder I trained the worse it got, so I raced my bike at a pace that I could ride without tiring and never gaining much success.

I packed in racing in 1994. In 1999 I came back into the sport at the age of 30. During the time away from the sport I still went to the gym on a regular weekly basis. Back racing I still found the same old problem Lactic Acid, I went to my Doctor asking him if he knew how I could over come it. He didn't but said he would try and find out. I never did get to find out from him, and know now why.

A stroke of luck - I happened to be talking to Alex Spence who mentioned that he had just come back from New Zealand after becoming a Practitioner in the Buteyko Breathing Techniques. I started to quiz him about this and told him about the way I was breathing before and during race meetings. Right away he said I was doing the wrong thing and didn't I suffer from Lactic Acid? Yes big time, I replied.

The next few weeks he gave me a few brief points on how the breathe. There was only a handful of race meetings left. I started breathing the way Alex had said to right away and felt the difference. I was far more relaxed and had far more energy. The last meeting of the season and I had a 5-point lead of the championship. I went into the meeting feeling so relaxed even to find that they had added an extra lap to each race, before this would have finished me. The whole day went so easy for me and at the end of the meeting I finished with first overall in all my classes giving me first overall in the 2002 Scottish classic under 40s Championship. Second overall in the Pre 75 up to 300cc. Also, first Scottish rider on the day to win the Scotland v England team challenge, and this is because I partly knew how to breath correctly.

Since then I have done the full Buteyko breathing course with Alex and apart from racing I have found much more benefits from the course. Can't wait to get back on a bike.

Stephen McNally

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