The Phoenix

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Didgeridoo to the Rescue!

Did you know in a study of over 5000 couples dealing with snoring, 80% of them will end up sleeping in separate bedrooms?!

There may be some hope yet for those suffering from this epidemic.

A recent Swiss study has found one possible cure for snoring...the didgeridoo!

What is a didgeridoo? It's an ancient musical instrument, native to Northern Austrailia's aboriginal people. It's made from tree limbs or trunks and hollowed out. The didgeridoo player blows into the instrument, and it produces this rhythmic low-pitched buzzing sound. If you've seen the movie "Crocodile Dundee," you would probably remember the sound of the didgeridoo playing constantly in the background, just to remind us that Paul's Hogan's character is indeed from Austrailia. Interestingly, the didgeridoo plays only one note. Click here to listen to a sample of a didgeridoo (mp3 format).

So what was the Swiss study?

The researchers examined 25 patients who suffered from snoring and moderate sleep apnoea to scientifically assess what impact didgeridoo playing would have on them. Half the group were given daily lessons in playing the Austrailian instrument. After being taught how to place their lips over the instrument and produce a keynote for 20 to 30 seconds, they learned the art of circular breathing. Circular breathing is a technique of inhaling through the nose while maintaining airflow through the instrument, using the cheeks as bellows. It's the same technique jazz musicians utilize while playing the trumpet. The participants had to practice at home for at least 20 minutes on at least five days a week.

I assume getting half nekkid and wearing body paint wasn't part of the didgeridoo experience.

Over a four-month trial period, participants noticed a significant improvement in their daytime sleepiness and sleep apnea. And their partners also reported less disturbance from snoring. The researchers say training the upper airways through the breathing techniques required to play the didgeridoo was behind the improvement.

"Our results may give hope to many people with moderate obstructive sleep apnea syndrome and snoring, as well as their partners," the report's authors said, whose research is being published in the British Medical Journal.

It's an interesting study, and perhaps similar exercises and circular breathing techniques can be developed and employed to help those with snoring and obstructive sleep apnea problems. I've heard rumors that these brillant Swiss researches are working on a new project for 2006:

Playing the Contrabass may help cure erectile dysfunction.


Blogger Sherri said...

This could prove useful for my husband. He snores. Horrible loud ear rattling snores. If I'm upstairs I can hear him snoring from the downstairs couch.

12/29/2005 10:50 AM  
Blogger angel, jr. said...

It's a lot prettier than those pieces of tape they are told to strategically place on the bridge of their noses.

12/29/2005 11:59 AM  
Blogger Kid Jacque said...

Woah. That is a seriously big saxaphone thingy....

12/29/2005 12:20 PM  
Blogger KC said...

My Mom needs one of these! Where can I get one? heehee!

12/29/2005 12:42 PM  
Blogger Bruce said...

I expect Dizzy Gillespie never had a snoring problem...

12/29/2005 3:16 PM  
Blogger DLAK said...

snoring is a sign of insanity, so is the didgeridoo.

12/29/2005 3:33 PM  
Blogger Dirk the Feeble said...

They take lessons to play an instrument that only produces one note?

12/29/2005 3:34 PM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

Isn't it funny how snorers are the ones that fall asleep the fastest? What's up with that?

Those breathe right strips only help those that snore due to nasal congestion. That's only less than 10% of snorers.

I would think that trumpet players that employ the circular breathing, like Dizzy Gillespie, wouldn't snore. We should take an unofficial poll. Seek those that play the trumpet.

12/29/2005 3:35 PM  
Blogger siren said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

12/29/2005 3:39 PM  
Blogger Free at Last! said...

I had to come and see who was preventing me from calling my blog The Phoenix,oh well,first come,first served and all that rot!


12/29/2005 3:40 PM  
Anonymous the weirdgirl said...

Hmmm, think Free At Last is a snorer?

12/29/2005 5:06 PM  
Blogger FLAMINGO1 said...

Where can you get one of those contrabass thingies???

12/29/2005 5:42 PM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

For your very own Contrabass Saxophone, you could go here:

You can also get a Didgeridoo from:

Seriously, you could fit a small child in the Contrabass saxophone.

12/29/2005 5:48 PM  
Anonymous delmer said...

I don't see a neck strap on the guy playing the Contrabass. How's he keep it up? (Maybe the Swiss are closer to an ED cure than previously thought.)

12/29/2005 6:54 PM  
Blogger siren said... brother plays the trumpet and he also snores. Maybe he's the exception and not the rule.

12/29/2005 7:07 PM  
Blogger Ben Heller said...

haha Delmer. You're right

Phoenix ?

I thought Woodwind instruments were for erectile problems

Get It ? (Wood)wind.

Sorry bad joke. Go back to England Ben

12/29/2005 7:07 PM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

Oh man, you guys make me laugh.

By the way, I wonder if there are many Delmer's in England...

12/29/2005 7:49 PM  
Blogger Laurie said...

Sounds like the war paint and getting nekkid is the best part!

12/29/2005 8:30 PM  
Blogger Sar said...

Is wrong that sound of the didgeridoo made me *giggle*? Then again so did your post and Delmer & Benn's comments.

12/29/2005 9:16 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

only Phoenix could segue from snoring to giant phallic musical thing to place to store small children

12/29/2005 10:16 PM  
Blogger :P fuzzbox said...

My wife and I race to see who can get to sleep the fastest as we both snore. I think that I would rather put up with the snoring than listen to this Aussie noise maker.

12/29/2005 10:19 PM  
Blogger David Amulet said...

Peter Gabriel used the didgideroo to great effect on one of his recent albums. It's a haunting sound that works well in the right atmospheric pieces. By itself, however, it is more likely to summon a horny moose seeking a mate.

-- david

12/30/2005 6:04 AM  
Blogger BrianAlt said...

I'd like to say something interesting and witty here, but I can't really think of anything. So I'll just be honest instead.

Nice punchline. The Contrabass Saxophone REALLY made me laugh.

You do seem to have a knack for discovering the absurd. Nice job.

12/30/2005 7:22 AM  
Blogger Reiki said...

I would think that there would be other ways of learning the circular breathing techniques than playing the Didgeridoo, but snorers are annoying, especially when they deny that they snore.

12/30/2005 7:46 AM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

I wonder if playing the alpenhorn would also help a snorer. Those things are GIGANTIC, like 8-10 feet big.


12/30/2005 8:17 AM  
Blogger Stacy The Peanut Queen said...

I'm printing this out and showing it to The Peanut King...he snores and I end up sleeping on the damn couch like every other night.

Of course, I'm going to insist he get half nekkid and wear the body paint...just because I'd find it amusing.

Bitch, thy name is Peanut Queen...;)

12/30/2005 8:54 AM  
Blogger cube said...

LOL! Just when I think I've seen it all, I find I'm just scratching the surface!

12/30/2005 9:40 AM  
Blogger Pixie said...

Wp snores...I like it it helps me go off to sleep heh.Unless we have had "words" which are left unresolved then I lie there wanting to kill him!

12/30/2005 11:38 AM  
Blogger Jamie Dawn said...

That last bit was TOO FUNNY! That guy may feel a bit inadequate around his instrument.

My hubby learned to do circular breathing as a trumpet player. He doesn't play anymore, and unfortunatley he does snore. His snoring isn't always bad, but sometimes he sounds like a one man band.
My mom, dad, and brother are all major snorers. I am not a snorer, but I would like to play the didgeridoo.

12/30/2005 11:40 PM  

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