Lung volumes

Lung volumes

Lung volumes refers to physical differences in lung volume, while lung capacities represent different combinations of lung volumes, usually in relation to inhalation and exhalation.

The average pair of human lungs can hold about 6 liters of air, but only a small amount of this capacity is used during normal breathing.

Breathing mechanism in mammals is called "tidal breathing". Tidal breathing means that air goes into the lungs the same way that it comes out.

Several factors affect lung volumes; some can be controlled and some cannot. Lung volumes can be measured using the following terms:


The largest human lung capacity recorded is that of British rower Peter Reed at 11.68 litres [English Institute of Sport, 17th November 2006, test ID 27781] , roughly twice that of an average person.

Unofficially Grant Hackett, an Australian Olympic Swimmer, has a lung capacity of 13 litres [Hackett diagnosed with asthma]


External links

* [ "Lung Function Fundamentals" at]

* [ "Respiratory Calculations"] - University of St. Thomas by Rex Njoku and Dr. Anthony Steyermark
* [ RT Corner (Educational Site for RT's and Nurses)] at

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