5 Simple Cardio Exercises For Better Lung Functioning

Cardio not only helps in increasing physical strength but it can also better lung functioning.

Chanchal Sengar
Written by: Chanchal SengarUpdated at: Nov 11, 2022 12:03 IST
5 Simple Cardio Exercises For Better Lung Functioning

Cardio workouts are also referred to as ‘aerobic’ exercises since the word ‘aerobic’ means ‘with oxygen,’ and breathing regulates how much oxygen can reach the muscles to aid in their ability to burn fuel and move. Since it’s a rhythmic activity that involves big muscles in the body thereby increasing the heart rate while performing the activity. We spoke to Rahul Basak, Fitness expert at Cult.fit, who shares five easy cardio workouts here that improve lung functions.

As per various experts & health associations, getting at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise, or 75 minutes of vigorous activity each week is recommended. This would mean 20 to 30 mins of exercise most days a week.

These types of workouts have various advantages. Apart from weight management, improving lifestyle disorders like managing BP, cardiovascular diseases, etc, and improving bone health, it also helps in improving the functioning of our lungs. It helps in decreasing how frequently you must breathe as exercise ability improves and can lead to reductions in fatigue and shortness of breath in chronic lung problems. 

Also Read: Why Most Smokers Don’t Get Lung Cancer, Expert Answers

1) Breathing exercises

Diaphragmatic breathing: Alternatively referred to as belly breathing or abdominal breathing. Usually, people get in the habit of breathing without fully utilising the lower part of their lungs. With this breathing technique, you consciously practise filling in the lungs to their maximum capacity and increasing oxygen uptake.

Alternate nostril breathing: It is a pranayama technique and is practised as a part of Hatha Yoga. This exercise helps clear out the nasal passage and improves respiratory muscle strength.

Humming exercise: Increases nitric oxide in the body and acts as a vasodilator and helps with easier blood flow through the vessels and prevents muscles from tightening.

Also Read: Manage Migraine With Bhramari Pranayama or Humming Bee Breathing Technique

2) Brisk Walking

Walking at a moderately quick pace of around 5-6 km/hr is known as brisk walking. The faster pace of this kind of walking puts more strain on the body's muscles. As a result, it offers a light aerobic workout while enabling the walker to travel a large distance quickly. A regular schedule of brisk walking might help with endurance. Normally, rapid walking can leave you feeling out of breath, but you should still be able to speak.

Cardio Exercises For Better Lung Functioning

3) Jogging or Running

When you initially started running it was quite possible you quickly ran out of breath, however over some time it became easier & you become used to the pace. This is because your lungs become more efficient in delivering more oxygen to the bloodstream & too quickly, as well as it becomes more efficient at removing carbon dioxide (CO2) from your body. Running increases the endurance capacity of your respiratory muscles – diaphragm and intercostal muscles – increases, allowing deeper and more efficient breaths when you run.

It also helps you grow more capillaries in your lungs, which means you can get more oxygen to your muscles more quickly. You develop more alveoli as you run more. These transfer oxygen into the capillaries by taking it.

4) Swimming


Swimming leads to increased lung capacity and endurance. It helps in increased breath-holding capacity. The amount of time that swimmers must take the necessary breaths depends on the timing of their stroke. This requires your body to adapt to having to wait a little bit longer, which can increase breath endurance. Swimming is known to reduce symptoms of Asthma- both the frequency and severity of asthma attacks. By increasing air capacity and endurance, swimming helps lessen the troublesome symptoms of asthma. Additionally, breathing in the warm, humid air that is frequently present in indoor pools is very beneficial for maintaining flexible lungs and open airways.

5) Jump Rope

Jumping rope, which takes some practice to master, may make you breathe heavily, and this, when done repeatedly over time, can result in some significant increases in lung capacity. A 2017 study published in the Journal of Physical Therapy Science At the end of the study, The essential capacity of the lungs was significantly larger in the participants who jumped rope than in the cyclists.

Image credits- freepik