This is a fine example
of how bodies can be altered, and how you can trick the natural
order. Sword swallowers tickle their gag reflexes seven times a
day for three years until they stop gagging. Once the
reflex no longer responds, they can shove a sword down the
esophagus into the stomach effortlessly.
To tickle the reflex
they typically start by sticking a finger down their throat,
until they just about throw up. They do it repeatedly until they
can slide their finger down with no response. After that, they
use a dull fencing sword, pushing it down as far as they can,
gradually getting it down farther and farther. After years
the body is modified, and once it stops responding to foreign
intruders such as swords, the skill is achieved.
people buy fake swords that collapse when theyíre pushed in.
Widespread use of this trick dims the lustre of the true
Hold a Man Overhead with One Hand
This one will sure bring
a round of applause. Tell your audience that you can hold
someone over your head with just one hand.
Pick someone and make
him stand up on a chair. Attach a belt or a strong rope
securely under his arms at his armpits. With your right hand,
grab the belt in the middle of the chest area. While raising
your arm straight, bend your knees and turn your back to him at
the same time. Now straighten your legs and lift the person off
the chair. Let his body rest on your back. When walking around,
you carry him on your back more than with your arm. But
since your legs are stronger than your arms, theyíre really what
lift the person. Do not allow your arm to bend at any time.
To do this stunt
successfully, start by lifting a lightweight person. Practice
for a while, and soon you will be able to dance around while
holding the person with one hand.
Magical Weight Gain
Even a small person
cannot be lifted by a strong man if she puts pressure to the
side of his neck with her right forefinger, and pressure on top
of his right wrist with her left hand.
Among the Todas tribe in
the Nilgiri Hills of South India, a spectacular stunt is
performed. They pack both nostrils and mouth with cotton, then
on top of all this pour sand. Yet they remain this way for hours
and still live!
putting cotton in the mouth the tongue is curved back and thus
prevents the complete blocking of the throat. The nostrils are
only lightly packed with cotton and breathing is lightly done
through the nose since the subject is supposed to enter into a
trance. Little air is needed and thus obtained. The sand is
packed only into the mouth.
Hold Fire with Your Hands
While holding a fire
eating dinner torch, pass your hand over it and squeeze it
carefully between your fingers. Some of the flaming fluid will
drip in your hand giving an illusion that youíre holding fire in
the palm. To cut the chances of getting burned, hold your arm
straight out with the palm up and flat. Remember to keep the
fingers together. The flame will extinguish as soon as the
Eating Red Hot Pepper
Before working this
effect, oil your mouth and tongue well with pure olive oil. The
rest is simple. You can hold the hottest pepper on your tongue
with no ill effect. You can eat pepper like ice cream.
Walking on Hot Coals
Certain self-help groups
have been using this feat as the ultimate confidence booster.
Fact is, this is one of the easiest of all the Hindu, yogi and
fakir stunts. Just let the coals heat up so only the cores are
there is a lot of ashes
around them. They are measured out, so it takes five steps or
less to get across them. Coal walkers must move rapidly and be
off the coals within seven seconds or the heat will register.
A cheater alternative:
some use volcanic rock, which doesnít retain as much heat as
coals and actually looks more impressive to the uninitiated.
This stunt is not for
the weak, but anybody who has a strong body can do it.
Sit on the floor, place
your arms straight behind you and raise your knees. Then lift
your body so that it is supported by your hands and feet which
are flat on the floor. Make sure that your body is parallel to
the floor and that your arms and legs are perpendicular to it.
Hold this position
firmly. Then have an assistant balance a long flat board across
the knees. Ask six people to sit on the piece of wood, three on
side. Once it is done,
ask them to lift their feet from the floor so that the whole
weight is supported by only your body.
Eating a Glass Light Bulb
Light bulb glass is
usually very thin, although Iíve been in some countries where
itís quite thick, which causes a bit of a problem and
indigestion. Glass eaters chew softly to avoid the glass from
popping on their gums and tongue, creating cuts. They also eat a
banana before and after the stunt to ameliorate the effect of
digesting Edisonís invention. After chewing the shards
gently down to small fragments, the glass eater chews with more
authority. The goal is to try to reduce the glass back
into sand. Once the shards are particle-sized, he swallows with
This stunt can pose a
problem for those with cavities or sensitive teeth because it
strips the enamel.
Half of this act is
making the torches. Fire eaters take cotton strings off a mop,
tighten them into a ball with copper wire, and affix the ball
around the end of a coat hanger. The ball is then squirted with
Once the torch is lit,
fire eaters lick their lips to make sure the mouth is moist.
They arch their head back as far as it can go, so that the
flames brought towards their mouth are going upward. They never
breathe in during this act.
The key is to breathe
out slowly enough so as not to put the flames out. They continue
breathing slowly out of their mouth as the fire is lowered past
their lips and into their oral cavity. They give one last puff
of air and close their lips extinguishing it in the process.
Pour a little alcohol in
a bowl and light a match to it. Peel a banana and dip one end
into the alcohol. Bring the flaming banana to your mouth
and eat it bit by bit.
*This stunt is
done the same way as fire eating. Wet your lips and mouth
with saliva, hold your head back (at about 75 degrees) so that
the fire doesnít burn the roof of your mouth. Exhale as you
close your mouth on the banana.
Hammer a Nail with Your Hand
Wrap the top of a
ten-penny nail very heavily with a handkerchief so that it forms
a ball in the palm of your hand. The success depends on how the
wrapping of the cloth is done. It gives you a better grip and
will protect you from getting hurt. Position the nail very tight
between the index and third finger.
Raise your hand and with
all your strength, slam the nail straight into the board. The
nail has to hit the board straight or youíll fail the feat.
Start by using a thin board; as you succeed use a thicker one.
But always use soft wood. The audience wonít be able to tell the
Canít Break Away
# 1: Fold
your arms high on the chest and stand very straight with your
feet steady and apart for balance. A towel is attached to
each upper-arm. Ask two men to take position on each side of you
and tell them to separate your arms from your chest by pulling
the towels. Youíll see they cannot do it.
Secret: To do
this stunt, make sure they pull your upper arms steadily with no
quick jerks, and they stay away from the elbows or you will lose
You can do the same
stunt without the towels; instead have the men try to pull your
upper arms apart.
# 2: Bend
your arms in front of your chest in a way that the tips of both
index fingers are touching. Ask a person to stand in front of
you and to hold your right wrist with his left hand, and your
left wrist with his right hand. Now challenge him to separate
your fingers without quick jerks. No matter how much effort he
uses, he wonít be able to pull them apart.
secret lies in the fact that you can resist the pull better than
him. The only way he can separate them is if he pulls one hand
up and the other down.
Hot Coal Diet
Build a fire of
charcoal, then add some soft pieces of pine that are the same
size. Once blackened, put a fork in one of them (thatís how they
will be recognized you canít put a fork through the burned
charcoal). Moisten your mouth with saliva and put the burning
piece on a very wet tongue. The burned pine wonít be as hot as
burned charcoal. This can also be done by using burnt cotton
balls that have been dipped in alcohol. You can also pick them
up with a fork.
Light a Cigarette in Your Mouth
Use a non-filter
cigarette. Place a lighted match underneath one end with the
flame away from the end.
Toss your head back and
bring the flaming match and cigarette inside your open mouth. A
few seconds later, the flame is out, but the cigarette is lit.
Secret: When bringing the match and cigarette to the
mouth, blow very gently toward the cigarette. It will
cause the flame to go toward the cigaretteís end and to light
Two Strong Fists
Ask a volunteer to place
one of his fists on top of the other. Now you tell him that you
can push them apart with only two index fingers.
in front of him with your hands closed but leaving both index
fingers free. Simultaneously, strike his top fist with your
right index finger, and the bottom one with your left index
finger. It will work every time.
Now if someone
challenges you with the same feat, be prepared to beat him.
Secretly place the thumb of the bottom fist inside the upper
fist. No matter how much force he uses to separate them with his
index fingers, they will never be strong enough.
A heavy person can
easily be lifted with five fingers. No devices are used for this
Place the volunteer in
the middle of the room.
Have one person position
his index under the volunteerís chin, a second puts one index
under the right foot, a third puts one index under the left
foot, a fourth and fifth put an index under each armpit. When
ready, they lift the volunteer simultaneously which distributes
the weight. If the volunteer is 150.
The contents of this section
are dangerous. Misuse of the material can cheapen an art form
or at the very least make you look stupid. More importantly,
misuse of this information may result in jail time or death.
Do not attempt any of these tricks without the direct
supervision of a responsible professional.