Armchair Training! How to hold your breath for longer

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Although most of us will never suffer a two to three-wave hold down, or stare down a 20-foot beast of a wave hoping things don’t go wrong, we’ve all felt a sense of panic as we scramble to the surface haven’t we? Well it’s that time of year where we aren’t doing as much surfing as we like or might not be gyming it as much as we should, but there is some training you can do whilst sat on your sofa – increasing your lung capacity and we could all benefit from learning to hold our breath longer hey!

We’ve chatted to the Errant Surf instructors to get their tips on how they have increased their lung capacity, which they reckon has helped get them out of some tricky situations on a few occasions. So whether you’re a total beginner, or a pro, read what our athletic bunch of surf coaches have to say…

1. ALWAYS train with someone as you might pass out! Sounds pretty heavy but you want to make sure you’re in a safe, controlled environment with someone watching as you don’t want to black out, fall down, and get hurt – Max

2. Before you start to train, just remember that you’ll always hold your breath longer if you’re not timing yourself as it’s all a mental exercise and you’ll freak out when you near that landmark time you’re trying to break so maybe get a mate to time you – Sam

3. Try going for a run and get to a pace where your heart’s going then start Breath Hold Tables. Basically, hold your breath for 30 seconds, breathe for 1 minute, and then hold my breath for 30 seconds, and then breathe for 1 minute. Repeat that for 12 minutes – Amy

4. In diving or snorkeling or whatever, you relax and get calm and can hold your breath for a while. In surfing, if you’re taking a beating, you’re already stressed and expending a lot of energy, so just try and stay calm!! – Will

*When you’re practicing holding your breath, please do it in a safe, controlled environment under professional supervision. Or better yet, take a freediving class.


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