The technique of breathing with the diaphragm, which Rickson learned from Orlando Cani in the early eighties, is not as complicated as people tend to think. Its benefits, according to Rickson, are hard to overstate, and encompass many aspects of his life.
Our recent interview with the legend allowed him to speak at length on the subject. Enjoy the third part of his comments below, and get caught up on part 2 here.
“As I put the hand on this, what I call ‘golden information,’ I was addicted; I felt like I was touching gold, and I never let things down, I never stopped practicing anymore. For my practice in surfing, for my practice in fighting, for my practice in relaxing, bioginástica, movements, I always did coping with my breathing.
“And then I felt like now, it's hard to make a movement and not cope with my perfect breathing, like tennis players do those days. [Imitates tennis-player sounds.] They get speed 'cause they exhale in the right time, and they also breathe as they move. [More tennis sounds.] So they never thought about breathing, but every time they touch the ball, they put the air out, so the air comes in and they keep reinvigorating themselves. So it's a very deep knowledge of breathing in modern tennis, like you're supposed to have in modern jiu-jitsu practice, supposed to happen in basketball, supposed to happen in boxing... Boxing also [boxing sounds], they can practice their breathing.
“So any activity, from sex to fighting, you can actually add a beautiful difference if you know how to do it. So I recommend you and everybody to understand diaphragmatic breathing and take advantage of this process, in order for you to go high-performance or be relaxed in bed without stress.”