Hypoxia training?

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RMFG_187
5/8/08 3:14:31PM
I was just watching this clip on UFC.com of Wandy doing this Hypoxia training. He tapes his nose shut, puts on a snorkel, and a 45 pound vest. trying to limit his oxygen intake so that his body can do more with less.

I was wondering if this really works, and does it measure up to altitude training? Wandy looked tired, but he said he got tired after 15 minutes. will this actually help his conditioning for the fight?

For the link

Look For Wandy w/ a snorkel
Jackelope
5/8/08 4:38:24PM
Mentally, yes. Physically- I'm not so sure.

When people train at altitude their blood takes on a whole new composition to make up for the lack of oxygen in the higher atmosphere. Their red blood cell count increases tremendously.

With this hypoxia training Wanderlei is doing there won't be any difference in the composition of the air coming in, there will just be less of it. My thoughts are that he will have the problem now of wanting to consistently breathe through his mouth. Which is bad, mmmkay boys?

All of this hypoxia training stuff is actually relatively new (at least on the levels it's being done now) so I guess the best answer is that time will tell.
Rush
5/8/08 4:50:09PM
Altitude training is fundamentally hypoxia training. The partial pressure of oxygen inis lower at high altitudes and therefore less molecules of oxygen enter your lungs. As you train/live in those conditions your body adapts to the lower concentration of oxygen by increasing hemoglobin (Hb) and myoglobin (Mb) concentrations in your blood. Once you move back to a lower altitude, you body re-adjusts and lowers Hb and Mb concentrations. There are a number other associated effects due to hypoxia, but they are all Greek to people with no science background (hence I am not going to discuss them)

The hypoxia that your are referring to is interval hypoxia training (IHT). As far as I know, IHT provides the same benefits as altittude training (because they are essentially the same thing). However, without actually reading the scientific journals on the subject (which I don't have time to do) I cannot comment on the degree to which altitude training and IHT provide those benefits.

I would speculate that the overall benefits are more extreme and longer lasting for altitude training, but this is just speculation.


However, one advantage to IHT might be a mental advantage. In altitude training the most mentally challenging part is the initial exposure to hypoxia. After that it get easier as your body adapts. IHT provides an opportunity for constant challenges for mentally (and even pysiologically) dealing with hypoxia. i.e. you can control the level of hypoxia in IHT. I guess one could argue you can do IHT at high altitudes once you've adapted.

With that said, I would recommend IHT for something like fights or other short term exertion activiites, but altitude training for long term exertion (like moutntain climbing or hiking which can span the course of several days)

As for anecdotal evidence, I really don't notice a direct correlation between the endurance of fighters that train at high altitudes compared to those that do not.
wolfman
5/8/08 4:50:27PM
He also used this for his fight against Liddell.
Rush
5/8/08 4:55:11PM

Posted by Jackelope

With this hypoxia training Wanderlei is doing there won't be any difference in the composition of the air coming in, there will just be less of it. My thoughts are that he will have the problem now of wanting to consistently breathe through his mouth.

.




Hah, you typed faster than I did. lol

Actually the composition of air is not difference in high altitudes (it is still ~21% oxygen). However, because the barometric pressure is lower, the partial pressure of O2 is lower. Therefore less molecules of O2 (and all other gasses in air) fill the same volume. Hence the feeling that the air is thinner.

You bring up an important point about the reduced airflow through the mouth.
Jackelope
5/8/08 5:14:24PM

Posted by Rush


Posted by Jackelope

With this hypoxia training Wanderlei is doing there won't be any difference in the composition of the air coming in, there will just be less of it. My thoughts are that he will have the problem now of wanting to consistently breathe through his mouth.

.




Hah, you typed faster than I did. lol

Actually the composition of air is not difference in high altitudes (it is still ~21% oxygen). However, because the barometric pressure is lower, the partial pressure of O2 is lower. Therefore less molecules of O2 (and all other gasses in air) fill the same volume. Hence the feeling that the air is thinner.

You bring up an important point about the reduced airflow through the mouth.



My intelligence on this issue comes from the science of the human body, not things like chemistry and composition of elements. I'm pretty much an idiot where all of that is concerned haha.

I'm sticking with the biggest advantage of it being mental. Mentally he will be able to push himself through the pain and fear of hypoxia, but as for the composition of his blood I'm not really sure that it will change.

I gotta go to work right now, but I really want to writ emore on this issue haha
lance70301
5/8/08 11:14:27PM
What about trying hypoxia training with higher altitude training? Not meant to be a joke, but a way to mentally and physically push your body to its limits.
Jackelope
5/9/08 12:23:08AM

Posted by lance70301

What about trying hypoxia training with higher altitude training? Not meant to be a joke, but a way to mentally and physically push your body to its limits.



That's awfully dangerous if the hypoxia training wanderlei is doing does change blood composition. (which I highly doubt it does because he's not spending enough time hypoxic) Basically when the blood changes it can clot extremely fast, and this can be a problem because any clots that build in the arteries can travel to the heart and cause an AMI, or to the head for a stroke or anywhere else on the body for an aneurysm. Or a multitude of other things for that matter. Any one of them easily able to cause death.
bigbubbano23
5/11/08 7:42:58PM
all i know on this is it will give you a wicked head ache after doing it. less air to the brain hurts.
The-Don
5/14/08 7:15:52PM
I think Wandy's training helps him more mentally as stated above, but is also prepares him for short term situations that a fighter might mace... for instance a broken nose suddenly he has only his mouth to breath through... stuck in a choke he is less likely to panic from the reduced O2 supply all this might give him an edge in a fight... as for long term.. well that I don't know... we'd need someone to study the actualy effects on the body and compare them to what Wandy does as oppsed to high altitude training... Is that show fight science still on this might be a good topic for them to look into
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