A new form-fitting snorkel promises to eliminate the need to turn your head while swimming. It's called the Powerbreather, and it earned a finalist nod in the accessories categoy at the ISPOBrandnew Awards—a tradeshow that bills itself as the largest start-up competition in the sporting goods industry. Its debut there certainly inspires a number of questions.
The first and most obvious being, will anybody wear this thing?
The Powerbreather fits snugly against a user's head and has two valves for breathing. A valve on the back of the head opens up when the user inhales. A valve near the mouth opens when the user exhales. The cool thing about the two-valve design is that it's supposed to only allow fresh air in while swimming and prevent water from coming into the tubes while diving underwater. The gizmo's promo video touts an ability to reduce the muscle fatigue that comes from turning one's head while training. In short, the device is supposed to be a sleeker alternative to donning a snorkel. That's not to say anyone training for say, an international competition, will use this thing. Still, it would be interesting to learn how much drag the device produces and how that relates to any ergonomic benefits the circular snorkel might provide.
The gizmo's website doesn't include pricing or a release date, so any interested swimmers reading this post will have to wait to place an order.