Let’s chat about respirometers

Let’s chat about respirometers

Last year, when we were just beginning to navigate the horrors and the scariness of Coronavirus, my guru in all things running, Dr. Rajat Chauhan, advocated the regular use of a respirometer to strengthen the lungs and improve one’s breathing capacity.

I duly bought one, used it enthusiastically for a few days, then bought a 2nd one for my asthmatic husband. Inevitably, with time, they were used less regularly and mine has sat on my desk for well over a year, supposed to remind me to use it every day, but – if the truth be known – ignored most of the time.

Of late, however, under the never-ending onslaught of friends getting sick from Covid 19, friends getting admitted into ICU, and – oh, the horror- one of them dying of Covid last week, I have dusted off the respirometer and am trying to use it several times a day.

I know it’s not a magic potion, but basically anything we can do to increase our lung function is all for the good, especially for those of us living in a polluted city like Delhi

First of all, here’s the inevitable Dr. Google definition of a respirometer for you:

“Also known as respirometer/three ball exerciser/breathing exerciser/lung exerciser.

Innovative system to exercise respiration through inspiration.

Device is composed of base and central part divided into three chambers containing three small spheres.”

Like so:

It really is a very simple (& inexpensive) device, so there’s no excuse at all for not buying one and using it.

Here is the guru himself, Doc Chauhan, showing how to use a respirometer,

I find I can inhale (see left) better than I can exhale, but neither is anything to write home about, so clearly I’m going to have to work hard at both exercises.

I also wondered whether between inhaling/exhaling one is more important (hey, I’m not a scientist or a doctor, so forgive the simplistic questions!!)

I found this Scientific American article very interesting, especially the section explaining cardiac coherence.

Anyway, what I’m aiming to do first and foremost is to improve my breathing using this respirometer, in the hope that all the other health/calming/mindfulness benefits will accrue as a consequence :)


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