If You’re about to Go Underwater, What is the Best Way to Hold Your Breath?
- A Few Quick Breaths In and Out, then a Big One.
- One Large, Deep Inhale, then Hold.
- One Large, Deep Exhale, then Hold.
- Inhale Like Normal, then Hold Your Last Breath.
Answer: One Large, Deep Inhale, then Hold.
Try not to let the movies be your guide. Most of them show a person in a panic, taking a few deep breaths in and out, then inhaling deeply before diving in. When you do this, your brain is fooled into believing there is less carbon dioxide in your lungs than there really is. Because of that, your brain doesn’t get the signal that you need oxygen when it should. The result is that you pass out, and possibly drown. It’s called a shallow water blackout and it’s easy enough to avoid. If you’re going underwater, just take one large breath and hold it before going under.