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How safe is packing?

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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Skip packing, or at least avoid it until you know exactly what your doing.

The extra air is normally for equalize when you go deep, and for this there is better methods. Mouth fill is much more useful and will take you deeper. Takes more time to learn, but it's a lot better and safer when you control the technique.

Dr. Peter Lindholm is doing a special studies about "packing vs. risks" just right know, and later we can use his work to answer more questions :)

Packing for Static and Dynamic takes looong time to learn in, and you have to do very small step forward when it comes to increase the packing. Remember that your heart is just between your lungs, and if you pack to much you create big problem not only for your lungs, but also for your pump...

I teach glossophryngeal breathing (packing-carpa) in a big hospital here in Milano, and to mix packing with apnea is very, VERY advanced and should only be done by the highest level of the professional freediver’s.


Vital capacity 9.0 L (154 procent over average)
Residual volume, 1.95 L
Glossopharyngeal breathing(lung packing) 12.68 L
RV+VC = TLC total lung capacity 10,95 L
TLC + packing 14,63 L
(tested by Dr Peter Lindholm)
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My thoughts on the matter...

There are many reasons given for packing, these are some of them...
(Not saying that they are good reasons, just that some people pack because of them)

1. Increasing O2 stores
2. Increasing amount of air for equalisation
3. Psychological - having 'as much air as possible'
4. Compensating for restricted breathing caused by water pressure, suit etc.
5. Copying experienced freedivers - 'he can hold his breath for x minutes and he always packs'

These are very different reasons, and some are more risky than others. I would say that 4 is the safest, and 5 is the most risky.

My reasons are compensating for restricted breathing caused by water pressure, and having that little bit of extra air, because I often lose some during a dive.

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