Many imagine Marine Corps Boot camp as a feat of strength and toughness. While you wouldn’t be wrong to assume that, it is much more of a mental challenge than anything else. The boot camp is designed to prepare recruits to function at a high level under extreme amounts of stress, just as they will need to during war.
The Marine Corps, along with being all-around badass, has a reputation for having great accuracy with shooting. What’s their secret? The breath. During the boot camp, recruits are trained to breathe in a way that helps them to relax through high pressure situations and extreme fatigue. Here is how it goes:
- Inhale into the belly
- Slowly exhale (longer than you usually would)
- Pause at the end of the exhale
I recommend this technique to everyone as it facilitates a meditative state and can reduce stress and anxiety for anyone, not just Marines. Go through the steps four or five times as frequently as possible. Learn the specifics of diaphragmatic breathing here. This way of breathing not only helps with stress and anxiety but also muscle tension and pain. Give it a shot and let me know what you think!