How to Hold Your Breath Longer While Freediving

A man free-diving underwater

Want to improve your freediving? Or are you interested in free diving? Do you wish to hold your breath longer? If you answered "yes" to any of them, you should be aware that freediving requires extensive body preparation beforehand. Exhale-stretching is a type of physical exercise that needs to be performed (also referred to as the empty lung stretch or diaphragm stretching).

What is the Exhale Stretch?

When holding your breath, the exhale stretch helps the lungs by stretching the muscles to increase oxygen capacity. Unfortunately, when practicing for a sport like freediving, this kind of exercise is not recommended sufficiently as a regular practice.

These stretches assist your body get ready for physical activity like swimming, and if done properly, they can also increase your flexibility over time and prevent injury:

But where do I start? It's essential to have a set of workouts that are effective as part of regular training, regardless of whether you're new to freediving or simply want to get better at the sport. But once more, it's challenging to know where to begin.

We have therefore developed a few methods for performing this stretch. Exercises of this nature can be done correctly and practically.

Stretch Exercise 1: When Sitting

A man holding breath in yoga position on the beach

Photo Credit: Les Mills

The exhale stretch can be performed while seated. Before beginning this workout, make sure you are sitting comfortably. Next, inhale deeply and then let it out. The next step is to forcefully exhale as much air as you can while maintaining a slumped over position. You then hold your breath for a second time, this time with empty lungs, and wait for your diaphragm to relax before straightening your hunched back. Your diaphragm will suck up or "stretch" if you do this.

Diver deep underwater

When you need to breathe, hunch yourself back up again before you take a breath. If not, you could injure yourself from the strain of gasping for air. To execute this correctly, a lot of experience is required.

The goal of this stretching exercise is to maintain this position without breathing for as long as you can. However, whether you're a pro or a newbie, it's obvious that not everyone can hold their breath for extended periods of time.

Stretch Exercise 2:  When Standing

A runner taking a breather

Prefer to stand, rather than sit? Then consider this exercise, which involves standing while having your legs apart. Meanwhile, you’re supporting your upper body with your hands on your knees. Be sure that the abdominal region is relaxed, while you do this exercise. If, at some point, you let your arms drop, then you should also let your body fall down towards your legs.

This technique causes the diaphragm to extend and move up into the chest when you exhale, much like the sitting exercise. The distinction is that in order to exhale as much as possible, you must allow your body to fall toward the earth while you do so. Don't forget that you must support your upper body with your hands on your knees.

Additionally, it's crucial to warm up before performing this exercise. The same stretches are performed once or twice to warm up, but this time you're dealing with passive exhalations rather than forceful exhalations.

One More Thing…

Once you're in the water, you'll eventually need to put these exercises to action. Keep in mind that using these new talents in the water requires confidence. Therefore, keep practicing if you're not yet confident using these skills in practice. When freediving, developing that confidence is essential. Never try free diving without mastering these techniques.


Lung stretching is a crucial component of your everyday fitness regimen. Both stretches help you expand your lung capacity, which is beneficial for freediving in particular.

It's crucial to remember not to overdo these stretches, though. If you overdo these activities, you run the danger of injury and weariness. Begin slowly and increase your speed as you continue to practice.

Find a moment during the day to perform this program while performing these stretches frequently. Choose the key areas that require improvement. Don't waste time attempting to determine what works and what doesn't; only you know what works for you. Concentrate on the things that will benefit you the most and best complement your freediving training.


About the Author

Mildred Delgado works for both and As a marketing strategist, she helps marketing teams to create a company site that shines in both functionality and accuracy. Want to learn more about Mildred and her works in the marketing industry? Visit her at

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