Wim Hof (born 1959) is a Dutch daredevil famous for his ability to withstand extremely cold temperatures for long periods of time. Hof holds several world records; he stayed underwater at the North Pole for six minutes and 20 seconds, and ran 21 km in -25C weather. Hof claims he can control his body temperature by practicing Tummo meditation.
He claims that his Tummo-meditation based technique can "cure 90% of all illnesses", and that if everyone practices his techniques "psychiatrists would be without a job, and hospitals would only treat fractured bones". Well, at least he doesn't claim it's a complete panacea, though this is by a hair.
Studies done on this yoga practice suggest it can indeed be used to increase or maintain one's body temperature, and one of them suggests that these effects may be due to a combination of the placebo effect and muscle movements that are part of the technique. A 2013 study by Kozhevnikov and colleagues showed increases in core body temperature in both expert meditators from eastern Tibet and Western non-meditators.
- Dutch Iceman to climb Everest in shorts: It's all about the inner fire
- 'Iceman' and 'Marathon Man': Feats of Human Endurance, ABC News.
- Sander Voormolen, IJzeren wil (2012). ISBN 9789035139268: "If you master this you will never get ill, because the body is too vigilant. Life quality will rise when everyone starts to learn to balance the unity between body and mind. Psychiatrists will be without a job, the hospitals will only have to treat fractured bones" (original Dutch: "Wim Hof: "Als je dit meester bent word je niet meer ziek, want het lichaam is te waakzaam geworden. De levenskwaliteit zal omhoog gaan als iedereen langzaamaan zal leren de eenheid tussen lichaam en geest te smeden. Het Riagg zal werkeloos zijn, de ziekenhuizen zullen alleen nog maar botbreuken hoeven [te] behandelen.")
- Neurocognitive and Somatic Components of Temperature Increases during g-Tummo Meditation: Legend and Reality
- Meditation changes temperatures: Mind controls body in extreme experiments, William J. Cromie, Harvard Gazette.
- Kozhevnikov, Elliot (2013). Neurocognitive and Somatic Components of Temperature Increases during g-Tummo Meditation: Legend and Reality. http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0058244.