Our body is such a beautiful vessel that is capable of greatness and all works in synergy and harmony. When areas are tight or weak then the workload isn’t distributed evenly and other body parts have to do more work to make up for the other body parts not working optimally. When certain body parts are tight this also wreaks havoc on our breathing.
One muscle in particular is the Latissimus dorsi. Now generally when we think of this muscle we think of it as the muscle we use for chin ups or when we are at the gym for a Lat pull down but this amazing muscle also assist with our breathing process.
This muscle attaches on our thoracic spine and the lower 4 ribs, iliac crest and into the inside of our arm
Also known as “accessory breathing muscle,” they enhance the movements of the trunk during inhalation and exhalation. On an inhale they help to lift/expand the circumference of the rib cage helping to increase the volume of air that enters your lungs and during exhalation, the latissimus dorsi muscle helps decrease the circumference of the trunk/rib cage helping to expel the required air out.
So if your Lats are too tight then you wont be able to get that lateral (outward) expansion which can impact the amount of volume of air you can get in to your lungs.
Try this stretch to help loosen the Lats. Find something to hold on to then grab it on tightly creating leverage . Now place the same leg of the hand you have reached out and stretch the leg as far back as you can with the foot on the ground with weight on the ball of your feet and pull what you are holding on to and this will help to open up your side body and stretch open the Lats.