Breath Hold Pushup Protocol

By Greg Finch

breathing, push up

The Breath Hold Push Up Protocol is very much a body and mind melding practice. You will be challenging your mind to relax as it screams at you to take a breathe. It is practicing to reduce that fear in a controlled environment to better prepare you and make you comfortable in the ocean and adverse surf conditions.

1 - 5 below describe ONE grouping of the Push Up Protocol you are going to complete 3.

I suggest starting with a 4-6-4 rep count in each set and progress from there. A good progression strategy is to add reps to the middle set in the second grouping first.

Example: Group 1 = 4-6-4, Group 2 = 6-8-6, Group 3 = 4-6-4

Prioritize maintaining breathe control (Breathe hold during sets, 1 breathe between sets) over higher rep counts of pushups.

1. Start with 2 minutes of nasal / diaphragmatic breathe

Start on all fours. You are looking to pre-load your body with oxygen, focus the mind, and feel prepared for the push up protocol.

2. Get into the top of your pushup form

2. Take 1 more deep inhale and HOLD THE BREATHE

You will hold the breathe throughout the repetitions of the set

  • Complete the repetitions in the set
  • Go back onto all fours
  • Slowly but FULLY exhale
  • Go back into push up form
  • Take ONE more full nasal inhalation and again hold breathe throughout the next set

3. Complete Second Set

  • Go back onto all fours
  • Slowly but FULLY exhale
  • Take ONE full nasal inhalation and again hold breathe throughout the next set

4. Complete Third Set

  • Go back onto all fours
  • Slowly but FULLY exhale

5. Complete TWO Minutes Recovery of deep nasal diaphragmatic breathe


That is one grouping. You will complete 3

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