Apnea O2 & CO2 Static Tables for breathing exercises – For Freediving and other sports

In many high activity sports (for example freediving) there are some well-known exercises to develop smart breath-holding skills. Most of these exercises consist of breath holds and rests with specific lengths — apnea tables or static tables (apnea training based on repeated intervals of breath holds). They are mostly used in freediving but they can be very beneficial when practicing other sports or just for meditation and relaxation moments.

freediving apnea static tables co2

O2 & CO2 Static Tables are timed static breath holds with no movement during them. Their aim is to get the body used to the extreme conditions of lack of oxygen or excess carbon dioxide.

If you want to improve the duration of your breath hold, you must get your body used to have high levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) and low levels of oxygen (O2). It takes quite a lot of time to do it but this static training undoubtedly leads to a visible improvement in the long run.

You need to follow two types of tables – CO2 and O2 tables. They are both based on your personal best (PB) breath-hold time, which you should measure beforehand. Additionally, you will measure your PB every 2 months and adjust the tables accordingly.

Before trying to perform the maximum breath-hold, make sure you do some warm-up breath holds first.

CO2 Table for exercises

This type of static table enables the body to get used to high levels of carbon dioxide. It does that by decreasing the resting time between fixed breath-hold periods. The duration of breath-hold should not be higher than 50% of your personal best and the table should consist of no more than 8 cycles.

This table is an example based on a personal best of 3 minutes:

1ventilate – 2:30 minapnea – 1:30 min
2ventilate – 2:15 minapnea – 1:30 min
3ventilate – 2:00 minapnea – 1:30 min
4ventilate – 1:45 minapnea – 1:30 min
5ventilate – 1:30 minapnea – 1:30 min
6ventilate – 1:15 minapnea – 1:30 min
7ventilate – 1:00 minapnea – 1:30 min
8ventilate – 1:00 minapnea – 1:30 min

Total duration 25:15 min

Of course, you can adjust this exercise by changing the breath-hold duration to 50% of your personal best or by changing the duration of the starting resting period.
With this table, you want to decrease the duration of the initial and final resting periods and to increase the duration of the fixed breath-hold.

O2 Table for exercises

This type of static table makes the body get used to very low levels of oxygen. It does that by increasing the duration of breath holds between resting periods. The duration of the last breath-hold in this table should not exceed 80% of your personal best and the table should have 8 cycles or less.

This example table is based on a personal best of 3 minutes:

1ventilate – 2:00 minapnea – 1:00 min
2ventilate – 2:00 minapnea – 1:15 min
3ventilate – 2:00 minapnea – 1:30 min
4ventilate – 2:00 minapnea – 1:45 min
5ventilate – 2:00 minapnea – 2:00 min
6ventilate – 2:00 minapnea – 2:15 min
7ventilate – 2:00 minapnea – 2:30 min
8ventilate – 2:00 minapnea – 2:30 min

Total duration 30:45 min

You can modify this table by changing the maximum breath-hold to 80% of your personal best or by changing the duration of resting periods between breath holds.
With this exercise, you want to decrease the fixed resting period and increase the duration of the initial breath-hold.

It is important to perform between two to four tables per week – one at a time – Never perform both types of tables during the same day.

IMPORTANT! If you violate any of the table limits you may suffer serious damage to your respiratory system. Never practice more than one table daily! Never practice more than eight cycles within one table! Never practice without the company of another person who is completely aware of what you are doing! Practicing static tables may lead to an LMC or even a blackout.

freediving apnea static tables


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  • I wonder if these tables could be explained. What does ventilate mean/ and apnea? What do you do? It is so hard for a beginner to understand how to use these tables if you are just starting out.

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    • Hey, thank you for reaching out. We can clear these things up for you.
      ‘Ventilate’ means relaxed, normal breathing and ‘Apnea’ is not breathing at all, just stop. Tables are based on your personal best apnea time. Our example is 3 minutes. You can calculate your values according to your personal best by doing simple math.
      Or you can download the app on the link from the post if you want your personalized exercises without doing the math by yourself.

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