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Old 09-13-2013, 05:15 PM   #1
Kiel Stuart
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Elevation training masks

I'm thinking about picking up one of these:

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/380621870...84.m1423.l2649

Most of the reviews I've read so far say people had a similar first impression to myself: "what is this stupid thing" but that it's actually very challenging and effective if you give it a shot.

Anyone have any more in depth experience with one like this or similar?
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Old 09-13-2013, 06:36 PM   #2
Cody Lichtenwalner
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Re: Elevation training masks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiel Stuart View Post
I'm thinking about picking up one of these:

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/380621870...84.m1423.l2649

Most of the reviews I've read so far say people had a similar first impression to myself: "what is this stupid thing" but that it's actually very challenging and effective if you give it a shot.

Anyone have any more in depth experience with one like this or similar?
Waste of money. Doesn't do what it claims.

"It doesn't take a medical degree to know that if you're at sea level, breathing sea level air (20.9% oxygen) through a restrictive device, the air coming through it and available to you is still going to be of 20.9% oxygen content. So how do products like this simulate altitude training as they claim?
Quite simply, they don't."

also wfs
http://ericwongmma.com/mma-altitude-...device-review/
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Old 09-13-2013, 06:54 PM   #3
Pearse Shields
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Re: Elevation training masks

No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. No. God, no.
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Old 09-13-2013, 07:00 PM   #4
Blaise Davis
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Re: Elevation training masks

The first way elevation training works is by decreasing the oxygen concentration in the air. Hence elevation training at high altitudes.

The second method is to lessen the amount of total oxygen to the body so the body is made to use that oxygen more efficiently. Basically restricting the amount of air you can breathe in. With this reduced oxygen the athletes body is effected in several ways however the most important is that the red blood cells and new capillaries increase the transfer of oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the entire body. Hence training with a restrictive air device. A lot of people use this in MMA and they swear by it. Some people use a snorkel. It works in my opinion, but probably less effective than true altitude training. But if your looking for an edge all those little things you can do turn into a lot.
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Old 09-13-2013, 07:19 PM   #5
Robert Fabsik
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Re: Elevation training masks

How does it decrease the concentration of oxygen in the air?
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Old 09-13-2013, 07:21 PM   #6
Blaise Davis
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Re: Elevation training masks

it decreases the amount of air you can breathe in per breath, which decreases the total amount of oxygen you breathe in, not the percentage of but yet the total volume of oxygen....so by this method yes it does work to some extent, but by how much is another question i cannot answer
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Old 09-13-2013, 07:39 PM   #7
Frank E Morel
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Re: Elevation training masks

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Re: Experiences with elevation training masks
No.... Training at attitude elicits a physiological response of the body releasing more red blood cells and increase the production cycle..this is due to the level of oxygen concentration. Below four thousand feet oxygen contcentration is roughly 20%. And stays constant because constant due to hemoglobin. Unless you suffer from blood loss...it's pretty much constant. After that 4k it bell curves downwards rather quickly per 1000 feet. Hence the term thin air.

So I guess the real question is can you train for this?
Yes... But.....

1- to maintain the ability to function in a hypoxia state is largely stay in a thin air environment. Achieved by 1- living at attitude for awhile. Aka acclimatization. Move to any where in Colorado, Mexico city or lake Tahoe
2- using a altitude tent.... Basically is a sleeping bubble that is sealed off and filled with low percentage oxygen. Forcing the body to release more red blood cells. Takes about 3 weeks to acclimate but it must be done nightly.
If one stops and you are not at altitude .... In roughly 10 days, the corrects itself and readjusts to the 20 percent mark.
Can it be done indefinitely ?
Yes... Expensively, you own a altitude simulatutor
Cheaply. Move to a height of 4k feet plus.
Covertly , Yes... Blood doping, Epo supplementation Both work but have hand in hand health risks that lie on morbid side.

Using a mask? In theory yes ... Reduce the volume of air pumped in to the lung but increase the demand of oxygen ... The body releases some more blood volume by reducing flow to other unnecessary body parts- tempoarily.
Reality...Once you take off that mask.... It tilts back in to balance.
Oxygen level in the air at less than 4k... Will still be 20percent. Your body hasn't released enough natural occurring epo to impact anything. Meaning no lasting effects.


There is a reason why the us Olympic training centre is in colorado
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Old 09-13-2013, 08:32 PM   #8
Blaise Davis
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Re: Elevation training masks

very well put, thanks
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Old 09-13-2013, 10:14 PM   #9
Kiel Stuart
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Re: Elevation training masks

I've heard of people seeing gains on the track/road after breath hold training, so I can imagine this working in some obscure way.

It's not going to reduce the concentration of oxygen in the air you inhale but if train with it routinely it is going to reduce the total amount of oxygen you're receiving overall, and this only gives your body the option to adapt.

If you routinely run 3 days a week at Sea level without the mask on, then wear the mask on one of those runs you're still restricting your oxygen intake compared to your previous routine.

I don't know how this is going to affect your performance which might negate the purpose of the mask in the first place but it's interesting. I think I'll probably have to have a crack for myself and end up learning the hard (expensive) way if it's useless.
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Old 09-13-2013, 10:33 PM   #10
Steven Wingo
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Re: Elevation training masks

For a long time there was debate about the benefits of altitude training. Now they have pretty much agreed on what is best: "live high train low." Some elite endurance athletes in fact do this, living in Mammoth, California and driving down about 4000 feet each day to do their hard training at lower altitude.

Note that there are negatives associated with training at altitude. Your intensity is, by necessity, lower. You can't get as much oxygen to your muscles due to the reduced air pressure. So you can't go as fast. That is bad if you are training with the purpose of wanting to go fast.

Let's use a CrossFit workout as an example--Fran. You can't do Fran as fast at high altitude. Say you go from 3 minutes at seal level to 4 minutes at altitude because of reduced air pressure and therefore oxygen. Well the cardio effect might be similar at altitude, because of the reduced oxygen environment, but the muscular endurance workout--a big component of a workout like Fran--will not be as intense. You are doing the same work in 4 minutes, not 3. It is less intense from that perspective. What happens when you always do Fran at altitude, in the 4 minute time frame, and then try go do it at seal level? Your muscular endurance is not there to now do it in 3 minutes--you have not trained your muscles to do that workout that quickly.

The altitude tents (and homes even yes they have them for some endurance athletes) theoretically work. You go outside and train as intensely as possible in a sea level environment. Then you spend most of the rest of your time, in particular all your sleeping hours, at altitude. The time at altitude causes increased red blood cells, resulting in increased cardiorespiratory fitness (at least temporarily) when you move back into a low altitude environment. Even the tents and homes, however, are subject to debate for endurance athletes--you don't recover as well from training at altitude. So is the beneficial effect of time at altitude outweighed by the negative affect? There is not a clear cut answer and the issue is still debated.

Most importantly, don't confuse one of those masks with training at altitude. They are not the same thing. Those masks make your lungs work harder to get air in and out. There may be a benefit to that, I don't know and have never seen studies on the issue, but understand it is not the same thing as being at altitude. The air in the mask in not "thin" like at altitude. Your lungs just have to work harder to get the air in the mask because there is restriction of air flow. But that is just not the same as lower air pressure.

When are those masks really useful?

What they are really good for is if you are military or a firefighter and may have to wear a mask like that at some point. It will restrict air flow. Training with restricted air flow will absolutely help in that regard. You are training your lungs for the extra work required. Most of the folks in that position, however, just do some of their workouts in their gas masks in lieu of a cheap knock off product claiming to be something else.
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