THE ICEMAN — WIM HOF
Wim Hof got his nickname “The Iceman” by breaking a number of records related to cold exposure. His feats include climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in shorts, running a half marathon above the Arctic Circle on his bare feet, and standing in a container while covered with ice cubes for more than 112 minutes.
THE EXTRAORDINARY ACHIEVEMENTS OF WIM HOF
Over the years “Iceman” Wim Hof has put a number of extraordinary achievements to his name, including 21 Guinness World Records. Extensive training enables him to control his breathing, heart rate, and blood circulation and to withstand extreme temperatures. Listed below are some of his most memorable achievements.
- Running a half marathon above the Arctic Circle, barefoot only wearing shorts
- Swimming underneath ice for 66 meters
- Hanging on one finger at an altitude of 2,000 meters
- Climbing the highest mountains in the world while wearing shorts
- Running a full marathon in the Namib Desert without drinking
- Standing in a container while covered in ice cubes for extended periods of time
Over the years, Iceman Wim Hof has drawn the curiosity of a number of scientists. They have subjected Wim Hof and even some of his students to various controlled experiments, with the goal of unraveling the secret behind his method. The outcome of one of these experiments was that by applying the method, regions in the periaqueductal gray area were activated. This is a part of the brain that is the primary control center for pain suppression. This is a promising discovery that could lead to a potential role for the WHM as an endogenous painkiller, and reflects results we already see today in people who effectively use the WHM to combat conditions.
In another experiment, practitioners of the Wim Hof Method were able to control their sympathetic nervous system and their immune response, while they were injected with an endotoxin. Trained participants showed fewer symptoms, lower levels of proinflammatory mediators, and increased levels of plasma epinephrine. This could mean that the Wim Hof Method is an effective tool to battle symptoms of various autoimmune diseases.