Oxygen Consumption in Underwater Swimming.
NAVY EXPERIMENTAL DIVING UNIT PANAMA CITY FL
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Oxygen consumption was determined during underwater swimming at speeds between 0.5 and 1.2 knots in 15 subjects. The method involved use of oxygen-rebreathing closed-circuit scuba with calibrated supply cylinders and a means of maintaining constant speed over a marked course. The results indicate that oxygen requirements are approximately tripled by increasing speed from 0.5 to 1.2 knot. The mean values indicated a distinct and progressive loss of efficiency above 0.8 knot. The probable average normal speed of underwater swimmers using similar equipment was 0.8 to 0.9 knot. Speeds below 0.7 knot were uncomfortably slow, speeds above 1.0 knot were considered too fast for more limited periods. Values for the probable range of individual oxygen requirements in underwater swimming are derived from the results and are presented for various ranges of activity.
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