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Apnea running?

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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Well-Known Member
Mar 2, 2001
High levels of CO2 stimulate the vagus nerve, which both slows the heart and stimulates digestive elimination.

The yogis say that a yogi inhales prana and exhales apana. The apana vayu (current) flows down the body, and controls elimination among other things. During kumbhaka (breath retention), apana accumulates and the apana vayu becomes strong, stimulating elimination. This is one reason why the yogis recommend going to the bathroom before pranayama practice.

Eric Fattah
BC, Canada

Levi Athan

New Member
May 2, 2003
First of all, in my opinion, concentration mostly matters when it becomes a considerable portion of the effort - as in static apnea. Of course, there are those who claim that the sodium\potassium pumps in axonal membranes consume as much as 1\3 of the total energy the body usually spends, but this is untrue during intense muscular activity. In fact, while the blood supply to the brain remains constant under all but the most critical circumstances, I've noticed that the body automatically tends to reduce mental activity and conserve energy anyway.

Second, having something to do actively stimulates the both the motoric and the sensory cortex, as a runner watches his step and corrects it accordingly. Concentration is much easier when one has something to concentrate upon. Thus, unlike during statics, boredom has hard time activating itself and producing a 'screensaver' of idle thoughts.

Third, I would say that what matters most is not the fact that one is thinking, but rather, what exactly is one thinking. Most common thought which may visit an average, non-competitive, freediver's mind during a static exercise would be something to the extent of "I'm not going to break any records anyway. Does it really matter if I hit four or five minutes?". During active apnea, however, one may get a lot of parasitic thoughts revolving against one central idea: "I'm not gonna make it. I'm not fit for this. The doctor told me to be careful. I ate wrong stuff again. People on the street already give me weird glances." Such thoughts are bound to reduce performance. The truth is, most people consider themselves suffering from abnormal self-underestimatement of their capabilities without realizing that it is but an aspect of a self-preservation instinct, which at times happened to save lives when so called rational thought could not. An average person's mind and body can be compared to a stock PC - it is sold in maximum compatibility mode. After employing a few options which increase performance without any negative results, one has to tweak those system options which may potentially result in severe instability to further increase performance. The key is distinguishing between the pain one has to endure and the pain which could mean real harm, and not forgetting to value your own personal successes - no more of that "So I did it, so what? I'm still pathetic compared to..." attitude. Unlike most sports, I value freediving and related activities for NOT being a race (The PB threads seem a bit ruining the purpose to me), but rather a way to understand ourselves (And our environment, if you're inclined to say so) a little bit better.

- Levi.
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New Member
Oct 15, 2002
mouth breathing

I had a talk about nasal breathing recently and a few things came up
1. If you breath through your nose the pressure in your lungs is higher. I think I remember Pipin saying this.
2. Breathing through your nose is healthier in terms of removing particals from the air.
3. An asthmatic friend went on a breathing course where they were told to avoid all mouth breathing. He now sleeps with surgical tape over his mouth. (presumably not when drunk :) )
4. A tribe American Indians on maturity would test stamina by running with a mouth full of water. Thus requiring nose breathing.

The general trend of the conversation was that breathing like a slack jawed yokel may not be a good idea and this applies to during exercise as well.

On a related note apparantly at this breathing course they were told that we breath too much and that venting co2 to the degree we do is unneccesary and not beneficial. I presume this was in everyday life not during exercise.
Any ideas on the veracity of any of the rather dubious beliefs above?
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Mermaid, Musician and Marketer
Nov 12, 2002
apnea in the gym

I hold my breath on the exercise bike/treadmill/crosstrainer. It seems to help as it feels a lot like a hard dive. I do a kind of pyramid pattern building up the holds then working back down.

Anyone know if this is doing me any good/bad? It does seem to bring my heart rate down a lot but maybe thats too not a good thing.. it also makes a long cardio session more interesting...



Freediving Sloth
Sep 8, 2002
Nasal breathing.

In addition to Cavedave's, I also reckon that breathing through the nose makes the air more moist and warm which is healthier for your lung tissue (helps keeping homeostasis).


give me gills!
Jun 18, 2003
I got a reply from Tanya Streeter about apnea jogging and about which opening you breath from.

I put it up under new thread because she made a long comment about apnea weight training.

Hope it helps
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