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Instantaneous thorax pressure on turnaround

Mar 30, 2018
12
2
13
56
Fiji
I Have been getting throat infections regularly in the past year freediving and I think I narrowed it down to a mild form of thorax squeeze with NO bleeding, that nevertheless leaves me open to infections after diving. The infections turn into fully blown flu sometimes and I am out of the water for another month. I get a feeling as if someone is throttling me just after the turnaround when I remove the nose clip and that does it. It's like a sudden vaccuum in my throat. I can stay very relaxed through it. There is no discomfort on the descend. After the dive my throat feels irritated and dry. I am always well hydrated and relaxed, but I have trouble leaving my noseklip on on the way up with air expanding in my nasal cavity. Most divers keep their clip on during ascend. Could this be related?
 

Tim B.

Member
May 1, 2017
33
9
23
Nusa Penida
Hey Tobias
There's a lot of things to consider here and quite frankly without further detail it is going to be hard to diagnose for anyone what is happening in your chest.
In general it sounds like this is an issue I personally would not just brute force my way through, so kudos for asking for help!
Aside from that, what is your depth at which this occurs?
How did you arrive at the conclusion that it is a thorax squeeze?
 
OP
OP
T
Mar 30, 2018
12
2
13
56
Fiji
... it's definitely a throat issue, not lungs. I feel the pressure in my throat (throat and surrounding tissue have nerve endings for pain sensing unlike lung. What baffles me is the sudden onset - not gradual - and on the turn only from the below rv region 35 - 40 meters and only when I dive with nose clip and take it off at depth. I have since learned to keep my nose clip on and focus on soft pallett relaxation on the turn and ascend and the problem of sore throat after the dive has not recurred. So fingers crossed ... .
 
OP
OP
T
Mar 30, 2018
12
2
13
56
Fiji
... have to add that I am fairly new to nose clip use. Still find it uncomfortable on the way up when I have a contraction ... more practice!
 

Tim B.

Member
May 1, 2017
33
9
23
Nusa Penida
Good to hear that it started working better for you!
I was just wondering because you led with "thorax squeeze" and I was not sure if you actually meant trachea or surrounding.
My other guess would have been to look at your turns and your neck position during and after the turn.
I have some students that push back their chin into their their throat or unconsciously lift their chin during and after the turn. Both producing tension and/or negative pressure in the trachea, leading to a scratchy feeling etc.

It sounds like you are already aware enough to further locate the exact region where the discomfort comes from. That's really great and more dives will most likely help you either solve it gradually or overcome the issue altogether.

Another related movement might be what you do with your mouthfill when you turn.
For example do you let go of it when you turn or keep it.

Good luck in figuring it all out further!
 
OP
OP
T
Mar 30, 2018
12
2
13
56
Fiji
...it's actually hard to remember what exactly I do with my neck - throat during the turn. I certainly try to keep it neutral and relaxed. As for mouthfill, I keep my "leftover" until after the turn and release it gently back into the lungs only on the way up. Sometimes it can accidentally end up in the stomach ( evident by belching after the dive). The location of the pressure used to be above the glottis and above the voice box so not really a thorax issue. But I think I really fixed the problem now with better soft pallet awarenes and control. Need to get these good habits become second nature so I dont need to focus much down there and can enjoy being depth-zonked again.
 
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