Developing self-control

Approach: Deep-breathing

Deep-breathing is used to slow down the intake of air into the lungs. Breathing is controlled by focusing on the process of breathing in, filling the lungs, holding the breath and slowing exhaling. This will allow an athlete to remain calm and perhaps lower their heart rate.

ApproachOrganisationProgression and challenge
Deep-breathingWhen there is a feeling of self-control being lost, take deep breaths.Use deep-breathing before and during a performance if possible – perhaps by reducing the number of breaths. Take big, slow, controlled breaths to try to calm feelings of loss of control.


Explain the use of the process of deep-breathing

The performer would sit somewhere quiet away from interruptions or distractions to focus on deep-breathing techniques. They would breathe in deeply so that the lungs fill. They would focus on the feeling of the lungs being full and not on any negative feelings. Then slowly, keeping control, they would breathe out a little at a time. This again keeps the mind on the breathing and shows the performer that they can control themselves.