A bizarre viral video shows a man turning his head almost 180 degrees, just like an owl. Don’t try this at home!
Most of us can barely touch our toes with our hands, especially after being in lockdown for so long. However, a user on the social media app TikTok shows that we can do much more than we think. The uncomfortable images are most reminiscent of the famous scene from The Exorcist, the horror classic.
However, the creator of the video, @sheaabutt00, talks rather lightheartedly about the scary stunt. According to them, it is mainly a fun party trick: “Party trick! #duet if you can do this.”
The man in the video places one of his hands under his chin and the other on the back of his head. In one fluid motion, he pushes his chin back and the top of his head forward. The result is a turn of almost 180 degrees! His face is turned backwards, after which the man slowly turns his head back to its normal position. From behind the camera we hear someone shouting in shock that they need a drink after seeing the stunt.
Everyone was surprised
A lot of people voiced their surprise on social media. The video quickly went viral with 3.3 million views and more than 53,000 likes. Many people reacted and compared the man to an owl. One user called the man a “human owl.” The comparison with The Exorcist was also made several times. Even the Adam Sandler movie Little Nicky was mentioned. Somebody asked how the man ever found out that he had this talent at all.
According to Dr Simran Deo, there are very few people who can do the trick safely. She warns that the stunt could lead to paralysis and stroke: “The cervical spine should only move 90 degrees from side to side. That means your neck should only rotate so that your ear is in line with your shoulder. Rotating it past that point can wreak havoc on the nerves in your spine and the large blood vessels in your neck that supply oxygen to your brain.”
How is it possible?
Dr. Deo explains how it is still possible for some people to do the trick: “I suspect there are very few people who can actually do the stunt, but one of the reasons could be because of extra joint mobility or connective tissue problems. That is when muscles, ligaments and tendons are stretchier than normal, allowing the joints to bend further than in people who do not have these conditions. Generally this is not something you should try because it can lead to paralysis or reduced blood flow to the head and neck, which can result in a stroke.