Breathe better to move better: Train to breathe like a pro athlete

Story highlights

  • Breathing is natural, but there are ways to breathe better
  • Many pro athletes train in techniques to increase mobility and prevent tension
Dana Santas is the creator of Radius Yoga Conditioning, a yoga style designed to help athletes move, breathe and focus better. She's the yoga trainer for the Atlanta Braves, the Philadelphia Phillies, the Tampa Bay Rays, Tampa Bay Lightning, Orlando Magic and dozens of pros in the National Football League, National Hockey League, National Basketball Association and Major League Baseball.

(CNN)From an early age, we're taught that breathing is part of our autonomic nervous system, like digesting food, so unless there's a problem, it's not something we need to think about. But, unlike digestion, we actually have the ability to control our respiration -- and for good reason. Arguably, the way we breathe has the power to impact every aspect of our health and wellness, from how we think and feel to how we move.

Many of us recognize the link between breathing and physiology, particularly during times of stress, but most don't realize its reciproca