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Dutch “Iceman” controls body through meditation

Sterling: The sun beams down on a warm Dutch spring morning, and the Iceman’s students look wary as they watch him dump bag after bag of ice into the tub of water where they will soon be taking a dip.

The plan is to try to overcome the normal human reaction to immersion in freezing slush: gasping for air, shivering uncontrollably, and getting back out again as soon as possible.

Instead, under the direction of “Iceman” Wim Hof, the group of athletes is going to stay in the water for minutes practicing his meditation techniques, seeking possible performance or health benefits.

Hof, 52, earned his nickname from feats such as remaining in a tank of ice in Hong Kong for almost 2 hours; swimming half the length of a football field under a sheet of ice in the Arctic; and making the Guinness record books for running a half-marathon barefoot in Finnish snow in deep subzero conditions.

He tried to climb Mt. Everest in 2007 wearing only sandals and shorts, but suffered frostbite and turned back at 7,400 meters (24,300 feet) — he wants to test the limits of human potential, not die trying. He climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro instead the same way in 2009.

Hof tells his students meditation in the cold strengthens mind and body. Some scientists also say ice bath treatments may have circulatory benefits for athletes, or help them recover quicker after training, although this remains controversial.

For most people, hypothermia begins shortly after Read the rest of this article…

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We comb the internet, looking for news stories related to all forms of meditation, whether Buddhist or not. To date we have posted thousands of news stories that cover everything from meditation and health to meditating celebrities. When we publish a story that's favorable to or critical of one form of meditation, this does not imply that we agree with the stance of the original news story. Read more articles by .

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Comment from Mike
Time: May 23, 2011, 3:15 pm

This is great. I think one of the most amazing benefits of meditation is control of your reactions and emotions. I found it very interesting and this is why many rich and successful people are extremely deep in meditation
http://modern-meditation.com

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