All about breathing - how it effects your fitness, health and wellbeing

Breathing is the first and last thing you do in life and each year you will take 8-10 million breaths. Since it happens unconsciously, driven by reflexes, it’s easy to assume that your breathing patterns are already optimal in fulfilling its main role of oxygenating your body.

But the truth is that breathing patterns can be dysfunctional, negatively effecting everything from your hormone levels and sleep quality to your dental health and physical performance.

Continue below to learn about the basics of breathing mechanics and why you should pay attention to how you breathe for your wellbeing, fitness and health.


Breathing, also called respiration or ventilation, is done with a primary role to move oxygen into and carbon dioxide out of the lungs. You breath about 7-8 liters of air per minute, containing 20% oxygen (at sea level) and of which you utilize about 5%. This means your take in around 450-550 liters of pure oxygen per day (all depending on body size, activity level, etc).