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Finnish saunas half an hour at 100 degrees Celsius

2011-12-23 14:15    Ecns.cn     Web Editor: Xu Rui
Timo Kaukonen

Timo Kaukonen

Ningxiang (CNS) -- Finnish Timo Kaukonen stayed over 30 minutes in a sauna at a temperature of more than 100 degrees Celsius in central China's Hunan Province, breaking his own world record of 16 minutes and 15 seconds, Thursday.

He beat seven Chinese challengers to safeguard his championship. Kaukonen once survived a cruel contest in a sauna set at 110 degrees Celsius, when his unfortunate Russian opponent died after six minutes in this living hell, and he himself sustained burns over 70 percent of his body and sunk into a coma that lasted six weeks. The contest, then in its 12th year, was thus permanently canceled.

Though still scarred from that miserable incident, Kaukonen found this ingrained habit hard to abandon; it originates in ties to country and kin. He identified with the traditional Finnish test of thermo-tolerance, just as his father did.

He attributes his high resistance to a daily sauna routine, and a large amount of exercise, including ice hockey, marathons and skiing.