Nav: Home

Study: New exercises help athletes manage dangerous breathing disorder

October 16, 2017

A novel set of breathing techniques developed at National Jewish Health help athletes overcome vocal cord dysfunction and improve performance during high-intensity exercise. Vocal cord dysfunction, now also referred to as exercise-induced laryngeal obstruction (EILO), has been shown to improve for athletes after being trained to use the new techniques. The findings were published in the September 16, 2017 online issue of the Journal of Voice.

"These new breathing techniques could represent a breakthrough for athletes seeking help with breathing during training and competition," said J. Tod Olin, MD, senior author of the study, developer of the novel breathing techniques and Associate Professor of medicine at National Jewish Health in Denver, CO.

EILO is characterized by involuntary and inappropriate closure of the upper airway during high-intensity exercise. EILO causes shortness-of-breath during exercise and reduced exercise performance, and can negatively affect an athlete's ability to exercise and perform. An episode of EILO can be noisy and terrifying to patients and observers of episodes. It is diagnosed by observing the upper airway with a flexible camera inserted in the airway during an episode.

The new breathing techniques, now named the Olin Exercise-Induced Laryngeal Obstruction Biphasic Inspiration Techniques (EILOBI), were developed and introduced by Dr. Olin, and are the subject of the research. Two-thirds of study subjects reported the techniques were effective in treating symptoms, while 79 percent confirmed they can be implemented during a variety of sporting activities. Additionally, 82 percent positively evaluated the teaching process. Nearly all of the subjects had received some form of respiratory retraining before learning one or more of the Olin EILOBI techniques.

"The use of real-time video data from a continuous laryngoscopy allowed us to design a series of three breathing techniques that help athletes open their obstructed airways during high-intensity exercise," said Dr. Olin.

Each of the breathing techniques described in the research focus on precisely and intentionally changing airflow during the inhalation part of breathing. The "tongue variant" involves breathing in evenly between the nose and mouth. The "tooth variant" requires patients to generate high inhaling resistance by forcibly taking air in through their teeth, then quickly opening their mouth allowing air to flow freely. The third variant is the "lip variant" in which air is initially inhaled through pursed lips and then the mouth is abruptly opened, dropping resistance and allowing air to rush through the mouth.
-end-
National Jewish Health is the leading respiratory hospital in the nation. Founded 118 years ago as a nonprofit hospital, National Jewish Health today is the only facility in the world dedicated exclusively to groundbreaking medical research and treatment of patients with respiratory, cardiac, immune and related disorders. Patients and families come to National Jewish Health from around the world to receive cutting-edge, comprehensive, coordinated care. To learn more, visit njhealth.org. Members of the news media may visit the media resources page.

National Jewish Health

Related Athletes Articles:

Electrocardiogram shows value in college athletes' screens
Research published today indicates that screenings that incorporate an ECG are more effective at detecting cardiac conditions that put athletes at risk, and more efficient in terms of cost-per-diagnosis of at-risk players, than screenings involving only a physical exam and patient history.
How kirigami can help us study the muscular activity of athletes
Scientists devise an elastic and durable skin-contact patch for measuring the electromyographic activity of the palm muscle inspired by ancient Japanese paper crafts.
Study examines attitudes toward transgender athletes
As several states draft legislation that would force student-athletes to play as their gender identified on their birth certificate instead of on a team that matches their gender identity, a team of political scientists investigated underlying factors that drive public opinion on transgender athletes.
The mind-muscle connection: For aesthetes, not athletes?
The 'mind-muscle connection.' Ancient lore for bodybuilders, latest buzz for Instragram fitness followers.
Sudden cardiac arrest in athletes: Prevention and management
It's marathon season, and every so often a news report will focus on an athlete who has collapsed from sudden cardiac arrest.
Vest helps athletes keep their cool
A new cooling vest for sports athletes may ensure everyone can compete safely in sweltering summer conditions such as the upcoming 2020 Summer Olympics, reports a new paper published in Frontiers in Physiology.
Athletes with sickle cell traits are at more risk to collapse: here's why
A genetic variation known to affect sickle cell disease might be the reason why some college football players experience adverse clinical outcomes during periods of extreme physical exertion and others do not.
Experts provide new guidelines to athletes on protein intake
A review led by a sports scientist at the University of Stirling has set out new international guidelines for protein intake in track and field athletes.
3D printed tissues may keep athletes in action
Bioscientists at Rice and the University of Maryland with the Center for Engineering Complex Tissues learn to 3D-print scaffolds that may help heal osteochondral injuries of the sort suffered by many athletes.
Young athletes with shoulder instability might benefit from arthroscopy
Young athletes with shoulder instability are considered to be a high-risk group of patients following arthroscopic shoulder stabilization given the high recurrence rates and lower rates of return to sport, which have been reported in the literature.
More Athletes News and Athletes Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Listen Again: Meditations on Loneliness
Original broadcast date: April 24, 2020. We're a social species now living in isolation. But loneliness was a problem well before this era of social distancing. This hour, TED speakers explore how we can live and make peace with loneliness. Guests on the show include author and illustrator Jonny Sun, psychologist Susan Pinker, architect Grace Kim, and writer Suleika Jaouad.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#565 The Great Wide Indoors
We're all spending a bit more time indoors this summer than we probably figured. But did you ever stop to think about why the places we live and work as designed the way they are? And how they could be designed better? We're talking with Emily Anthes about her new book "The Great Indoors: The Surprising Science of how Buildings Shape our Behavior, Health and Happiness".
Now Playing: Radiolab

The Third. A TED Talk.
Jad gives a TED talk about his life as a journalist and how Radiolab has evolved over the years. Here's how TED described it:How do you end a story? Host of Radiolab Jad Abumrad tells how his search for an answer led him home to the mountains of Tennessee, where he met an unexpected teacher: Dolly Parton.Jad Nicholas Abumrad is a Lebanese-American radio host, composer and producer. He is the founder of the syndicated public radio program Radiolab, which is broadcast on over 600 radio stations nationwide and is downloaded more than 120 million times a year as a podcast. He also created More Perfect, a podcast that tells the stories behind the Supreme Court's most famous decisions. And most recently, Dolly Parton's America, a nine-episode podcast exploring the life and times of the iconic country music star. Abumrad has received three Peabody Awards and was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2011.