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what is your breathe-up?

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
It can take a long time to get an up-to-date response or contact with relevant users.


Shallow Water Whiteout
May 29, 2004
I've done several searches on here and haven't found a thread dedicated to this topic with a lot of good answers. I have no formal freediving training, or knowledge of freediving techniques. I usually just breathe really slowly (4 cycles per minute) for two minutes before apnea. However I have also tried breathing in slowly but exhaling quickly (is this hyperventilating?). I also read something posted by someone recently that entailed:

inhale 3 sec
hold 6 sec
exhale 6 sec

I tried that in a static the other night and did 3:30 which is a PB by a lot. I had almost no breathing urge, and the funny thing is, that method was posted in a thread about solo freediving, because it is supposed to keep the breathing urge very strong, for safety reasons. I tried same method a few nights later and got very strong breathing urge and couldn't come close to 3:30 again, it was very uncomfortable.

I guess I'm looking for detailed breathe-up methods like the one I posted above, the benefits and detriments of each one (i.e. suppression of the breathing urge, slowing of heart rate, risks when using on a real dive, etc). I know almost nothing about this... I've heard hyperventilating is stupid and risky, but I've also heard many say that their breathe-ups are on the borderline of hyperventilation. I don't even know what the specific definition of hyperventilation is.

All input is appreciated. :D
Bearing in mind I am relatively inexperienced (pb is 4:10), I have tried quite a lot of breathe-up techniques. The conclusion I have come to is that different things work for different people, you just have to try lots of different ways for yourself. I have found that I do best simply with long slow deep breaths (about 4 per minute) and then a couple of fast deep breaths just before the hold. However, different methods work best on different days too. So I guess the only way to find what is best for you is to keep trying lots of different ways.
Here are a couple of ideas to get you started...

5 secs inhale
5 secs hold
5 secs exhale

5 secs inhale
5 secs exhale (no hold and no gap whatsoever between breaths)

8 secs inhale
10 secs hold
8 secs exhale