How to beat a lie detector test

A lie detector test works by measuring physiological responses such as your blood pressure and heart rate when responding to questions, but it can be beaten. Here's how.

1. Develop an alternative breathing technique
Maintain a normal breathing rate, then alter it for about fifteen seconds. You can make it faster or slower, you can hold your breath for a couple of seconds after exhaling or you can breathe more shallowly.

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2. Think
About things that evoke extreme emotional responses in you, such as, excitement, fear or frustration.

3. Perform mathematical calculations in your head
Count backwards in your head as quickly as possible or do some quick long division as you respond to the questions.

4. Insert a nail or pin in the front of your shoe
Press down on this during the control questions to induce a pain response.

5. Bite the side of your tongue
Hard enough to cause pain, but not so hard as to draw blood. Only use this method if you can give quick "yes" or "no" answers, as it can make it very difficult to speak properly!

Words by Sam Parker, with the assistance of Richard Reid, leading psychotherapist and hypnotherapist. www.pinnacleplus.co.uk

Illustration by Nick Hardcastle