This apparatus was popularised by UFC lightweight standout, Sean “Muscle Shark” Sherk and serves the purpose of simulating high altitude training. You often hear about MMA fighters and boxers going to train at places that are at a high altitude such as Big Bear (California).
Thanks to the Elevation Training Mask, high altitude is now portable. At first glance it looks like a gas mask and has an anarchic appearance to it and perhaps even fetish-esque to the perverse (and we suddenly have your attention). The mask draws a paradox somewhere along the lines of “hellish” and “effective”.
It is accompanied by three different nozzles that have varying levels of oxygen restriction. The first time you workout with the mask is a major shock to the system. And like anything new, the more frequently you use it, the sooner you will get comfortable with this torturous device – we use the word “comfortable” in a most liberal sense.High altitude workouts enhance an athlete’s gas tank by forcing the body to adjust to the lower level of oxygen. The mask is said to improve lung capacity and anaerobic perimeters. It will also help enhance mental toughness and render you a greater ability to regulate your breathing under resistance – essential for competition.
Even shadow boxing in your lounge can be transformed into a mammoth undertaking through usage of the mask. It sells for around R1 000, but it is definitely money well spent.