Can Powerlung Trainer Increase VO2max, Fitness and Body O2?
Powerlung Sport Review
The PowerLung breath trainer is a breathing device used to train respiratory muscles
resistance that can be independently regulated for inhalations and
exhalations. It has some similarities with the Powerbreathe, UltraBreathe, and
Expand-A-Lung devices. The PowerLung was invented by Mr. Barry Jarvis who wanted to improve his
sport fitness after a heart attack. Several small trials
have tested the effects of the PowerLung on various groups of people, including: young
soccer players, cross country runners, intermittent sprint athletes,
marathoners and triathletes, SCUBA divers, elite international
swimmers, older females, and the elderly (see
references below). The device became popular in many sports for improving fitness in
swimming, rowing, triathlon, and some other sports, as well as for asthma.
Reviews and research pilot studies have found improvements in various
measured parameters, such as higher VO2max (not in all studies), better lung
FVC, and VEmax), lower heart rate for the same load, and some others.
These effects indicate that PowerLung influences automatic breathing patterns and body-oxygen levels
by increasing alveolar and arterial CO2 during breathing sessions and after
them. The PowerLung trainer has adjustable resistance and some additional dead space
(leading to increased volume). However, the Training Mask (as well as other
breathing devices including the Frolov breathing device, Samozdrav, Breathslim,
and the Amazing DIY Breathing Device) have a larger extra dead space to trap exhaled
PowerLung for asthma, COPD, emphysema, and other diseases
PowerLung trainer can be
beneficial for people with chronic health problems (asthma, hypertension or
heart disease, COPD, emphysema, cystic fibrosis, and so forth), when their body
oxygen level is about 10-12 seconds or less, and they suffer from chronic
PowerLung vs. Powerbreathe, Expand-A-Lung, UltraBreathe and other trainers
we consider health benefits and changes in body-oxygen levels, it is wrong to compare PowerLung vs. Powerbreathe or Expand-A-Lung
vs. Powerlung since it is how you use it, rather than what you use,
that matters most for your health most. However, one sport device has definite
advantages due to increased dead space. More info about this device is below.
One of the hardest things for athletes and coaches is to realize that
breathing patterns and body-O2 content at rest (before exercise)
predetermine fitness, VO2max (endurance), and sport performance for any
This graph below explains why modern population is unfit, has low
brain-and-body-O2 content, and suffer from diseases.
In order to achieve improvements in VO2max and other parameters of endurance
and sports performance, the PowerLung breathing sessions could be made progressively more
challenging with possible breath holds (e.g., after exhalations) for
advanced users to further increase their alveolar CO2 and body-oxygen levels.
Application of correct lifestyle changes in order to improve
body oxygenation are vital for long term success in breathing retraining
and getting additional benefits from the PowerLung trainer for sports, fitness,
higher VO2 max and better health. Review the links below for other devices and breathing-related
For sport and elite athletes
There is one more effective breathing device that can be used continuously during exercise for up to 20-40 or more minutes mimicking training at high altitude. This device is used by Pete Jacobs, 2012 Ironman World
Champion. You can find more details and the review of this device right below as your bonus content.
Four Weeks of Respiratory Muscle Training Improves Intermittent Recovery
Performance but Not Pulmonary Functions and Vo2 Max Capacity in Young Soccer
Players, Emre AK and Can Ozgide; Middle East Technical University,
Department of Physical Education and Sports; Orta Dogu Teknik Universitesi,
Cankaya, Ankara, Turkiye
The Effects on Pulmonary Function and Performance from Training
Respiratory Muscles in Collegiate Cross Country Runners with PowerLung,
M.M. Barnes, D.M. McGee, A.K. Butler and R. Galbreath, Dept. of Physical
Therapy, Wheeling Jesuit University, Dept. of Exercise Physiology, Ohio
University Eastern, Dept. of A.R. Physiology, Ohio Valley C & R Surgery
The Effects of Respiratory Muscle Training Program Effects on
Performance, Dyspnea, and Respiratory Muscle Fatigue in Intermittent Sprint
Athletes, Clay Nicks, Richard Farley, Dana Fuller, Don Morgan, FACSM,
Jennifer Caputo, Columbus State University (Columbus, GA); Middle Tennessee
State University (Murfreesboro, TN)
The Effects of Respiratory Muscle Training on Performance in Older
Females, Watsford, M. L. & Murphy, A. J. (2008). Journal of Aging and
Physical Activity. 16(3): 245-260.
The Effects of Respiratory Muscle Training on Older Females, Mark L.
Watsford, Aron J. Murphy, Matthew J. Pine, Aaron J. Coutts. Human
Performance Laboratory, University of Technology, Sydney.
The Effects of Respiratory Muscle Training on Maximal and Submaximal
Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Measurements, William E. Amonette, BS, CSCS
& Terry L. Dupler, Ph.D., Fitness & Human Performance Laboratory, University
of Houston-Clear Lake, January 15, 2001.
Respiratory Resistance Training Increases Ventilatory Capacity in the
Elderly, Nathan Andrew Trueblood, Earlham College, 2004
Respiratory Muscle Power Before and After Training (with PowerLung),
Greg Wells, University of Toronto Respiratory Research Group, 2003
Five-week Respiratory Muscle Training Program Effects on Lung Function
and Air Consumption in SCUBA Divers, Casey W. Fisher, Ann L. Gibson.
Barry University, Miami Shores, Florida
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