Christian Long

David Blaine: How I Held My Breath for 17 Minutes

In TED Talks on May 24, 2010 at 3:28 pm

Extra credit reflection by DANIEL L.

Original TED page w/ speaker bio, links, comments, etc:

David Blaine:  How I Held My Breath for 17 Minutes

Some of the things that David Blaine does, or actually everything David Blaine does, just amazes me. Why would you want to live in a glass box for 44 days with nothing but water? That is just crazy. Also why would you want to be buried alive for a week also with nothing but water. David Blaine always tries to challenge himself to do things that people say cant be done.

One of the most famous things David Blaine is known for is the holding his breath under water situation. I remember watching this on television and I was just in shock that someone could hold there breath for that long. Everything that David Blaine talks about on TED is how he wanted to do what nobody could think he could do. Like hold his breath under water for 17 minutes. David Blaine prepared unbelievably for this next challenge and did everything he could to reach his goal. He researched free divers and learned the proper ways to hold your breath under water. For example he found out that your not supposed to move under water because if wastes energy. In four months of training David Blaine was able to hold his breath for 7 minutes. What he figured out is that if he could slow his heart rate down then he could hold his breath alot longer. So he tried many situations where he had to slow his heart rate down under chaos. So he put himself in a shark tank and held his breath for as long as he could.

When David Blaine decided that he wanted to break the world record, he wanted it to be live on primetime television. The world record was 8 minutes and 58 seconds. Now what messed David Blaine up was when the television producers decided that they wanted to put hand cuffs on him, this really messed him up and made his heart rate go up. He blacked out within about 7 minutes and had to get pulled out of the water. After failing the challenge David Blaine decided he wanted to try again. David Blaine made it to 17 minutes.

David Blaine made an incredible quote by saying ” magic is training and experimenting, while pushing through the pain to be the best that I can be.” David Blaine does whatever it takes to be the best at everything he does, whether its card tricks, holding his breath under water, and just being the best magician in the world. David Blaine does what everyone says is impossible, and makes it possible.


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