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Keynote Speakers

We are proud to announce the following Keynote speakers for the GIC 2024. We have found six outstanding people who are working in the field of breathwork and who are letting their lights shine on the many different aspects of breathwork, close to our theme: Celebrating the Diversity in Breathwork.

Petri Berndtson

Invites reflection on surprising directions, ideas, or cultures that may emerge as the breath turns individuals toward different destinations. Join this celebratory atmosphere of philosophical and phenomenological wonder.

Keynote GIC2024: Phenomenological Philosophy of Respiratory Diversity

In this enlightening keynote, the Finish born Berndtson navigates the philosophical intricacies of Phenomenological Philosophy of Respiratory Diversity. Beyond common discourse, he delves into the word “diversity” etymologically, tracing it back to the Latin divertere—meaning “to turn in different directions”.

Exploration highlights in his keynote:

  • The respiratory difference between forgetting and cultivating breathing
  • The constant turning of breathing in different directions during inspiration and expiration
  • How the vastness of breathing turns lives in diverse directions—bodily, aesthetically, ethically, and more.

About Petri Berndtson
PhD: A Journey into Respiratory Philosophy
Petri Berndtson, stands as a luminary in respiratory philosophy, acclaimed for his profound imagination. Serving as a research associate at the Institute for Philosophical and Religious Studies in Slovenia, Berndtson’s expertise spans the experiential phenomenon of breathing, phenomenology, embodiment, elemental poetics of air (Bachelard), and contemplative studies.

Authorship: Phenomenological Ontology of Breathing: The Respiratory Primacy of Being (Routledge, 2023) and the coeditor of Atmospheres of Breathing (SUNY Press, 2018). He has written articles about respiratory philosophy, phenomenology of breathing, ethics of breathing, respiratory religion (Jesus and St. Paul), respiratory poetics, Buddhist mindfulness of breathing, and respiratory imagination.

Aad Havermans

Join Aad Havermans in a captivating discussion on how breath and cold co-operate as transformative tools. This session will blend Aad’s personal experiences with examples from recent scientific research, offering a holistic view of the profound synergy between breathwork and cold exposure.

Keynote GIC2024: Understanding the Synergy: Breathwork and Cold Exposure, A Powerful Combination

Discover the transformative synergy of the Wim Hof Method and Conscious Connected Breathing with Aad Havermans. This unique combination unfolds as a powerful and deepening experience, where the cold invites surrender, and breath penetrates for healing. Participants in his retreats have reported life-changing experiences, profound healing journeys, and a deepening understanding of their ongoing processes.

The Way We Breathe, The Way We Live
The breath is a mirror of our life, influencing our nervous system, well-being, and overall state. Breathwork sessions, coupled with gradual and short-term cold exposure, prove to be incredible tools for healing, self-exploration, and self-development.

Benefits of Cold Exposure
Scientific research increasingly reveals the benefits of gradual and short-term cold exposure. The build-up of “brown adipose tissue” not only helps maintain warmth and leanness but also positively impacts the metabolic system. Cold exposure contributes to dopamine production, release of “feel-good hormones,” and the build-up of anti-inflammatory proteins.

About Aad Havermans – Your Guide in the Journey
Aad Havermans, a certified trainer in the Wim Hof Method, brings a wealth of experience to the exploration of breath and cold exposure. His training in Transformational Breath, Breathology, Biohacking Breathwork, and influences from Dan Brule enriches his perspective. In this keynote, Aad will share insights from his own teaching and practice, complemented by scientific research findings from recent years.

Aad Havermans, previously engaged in law, project development, entrepreneurship in the hospitality business, has found his focus on retreats in Portugal. Here, he combines conscious connected breathing and cold exposure, creating a space where breath, cold, yoga, people, and love converge.

Hannah Kendaru

Welcome to the World of Decolonial Healing with Hannah Kendaru

Keynote GIC2024: Decolonial Healing – Remembering Connection

The first people to be colonized were those living in Europe. Decolonial healing is about more than race; it’s about reclaiming our connection to the earth, our medicine, our songs, and each other. In this presentation, I will share the foundations of Decolonial Healing, its personal and global implications, and the work I am doing to address societal wounds.

About Hannah Kendaru
Hannah Kendaru is an Indonesian-British Breathwork Practitioner and Embodiment Facilitator.
Her work revolves around embodied approaches to healing intergenerational, historical, institutional, and personal trauma. She uses breathwork and embodiment to guide us back into the deep remembrance of love, liberation, and justice.

Founder of Inspire Breathwork
Hannah is the proud founder of Inspire Breathwork and the teacher behind The Forest Garden: an Embodied Decolonial Healing Initiative.

You can join her in this journey of remembering, healing, and change.

Tilke Platteel-Deur

Keynote GIC2024: Breathwork Mastery: Cultivating Presence and Therapeutic Excellence
“There is No Highway to Enlightment!”

In her keynote, Tilke Platteel-Deur will delve into the ethical dimensions of Breathwork, emphasizing the significance of a solid education. Explore the intersection of compassionate guidance, emotional intelligence, and ethical considerations in the transformative journey of Breathwork.

The Essence of Breathwork Mastery:
Breathwork Mastery is more than a skill; it’s a journey from unbridled enthusiasm to nuanced understanding. This profound training is crucial in the evolving field of Breathwork, cautioning against the pitfalls of inadequate preparation.

About Tilke Platteel-Deur:
Tilke’s journey began in 1978, and since then, she has shared her expertise in the Netherlands, Germany, France, and Spain. As a breathwork therapist, coach, supervisor, and trainer, she delves into various modalities, including the Psychology of Selves, NLP, Family Constellations, Polarity Therapy, and Massage.

Notable Achievements:
President of the International Breathwork Foundation (2001-2004)
Board member of the Global Professional Breathwork Alliance
Co-founder and co-leader of the Institute for Integrative Breathwork Therapy

Tilke authored “The Art of Integrative Therapy,” a profound exploration of healing the past on a soul level. Her articles on Breathwork, such as Hot Water Breathwork and Cold Water Breathwork, were published in The Healing Breath and Atman journals.

Her philosophy of breath:
“The Spirit of Breath has the power to connect us with our real strength and vulnerability. In an atmosphere of acceptance, respect, and love, a human being may become more conscious of his true nature, his essence, and the deeper meaning of his life.”

Nikki van der Velden

Explore “The Secrets to a Thriving Breathwork Community” with Nikki van der Velden

Keynote GIC2024: The Secrets to a Thriving Breathwork Community

In this empowering keynote, Nikki will inspire you with practical strategies for creating and nurturing a thriving community. Drawing from her experience with The Breathwork Movement, Nikki delves into the nuances of community-building, whether centered around breathing or any other topic. Uncover the do’s and don’ts Nikki has learned along the way, and discover that a rigid plan isn’t always a prerequisite for success.

About Nikki van der Velden
Nikki van der Velden has successfully cultivated The Breathwork Movement, a flourishing Dutch/Belgium platform dedicated to the transformative power of breathwork. Excitingly, her book Your Breath, Your Medicine is set to be published this March, initially available in Dutch.

Be Inspired by The Breathwork Movement
Explore the inspiring story of The Breathwork Movement and gain insights into Nikki’s innovative approach that has created a vibrant and engaged community.

More about Nikki van der Velden
Join Nikki van der Velden, author, public speaker, and the visionary founder of The Breathwork Movement, as she shares the secrets to building and maintaining a thriving breathwork community in her captivating keynote.

Kasper van der Meulen

The well-known Dutch biohacker states that:
Diversity is everything, and diversity can only be navigated when you can build bridges between different aspects of life.

Keynote GIC2024: Breathwork as a Bridge

In his keynote Kasper van der Meulen will explore the connection between scientific/reductionist thinking (and its limitations) and holistic/spiritual thinking (and its limitations) and how the breath can serve as a bridge to bring those fields together. He’ll be looking at the balance between feeling and understanding, analyzing and experiencing.
To add some extra juice he addresses some common errors or misconceptions in the breathing world, which he combines with the systemic theme ” to know your place”. First of all, to know your place as a facilitator, what are your limits and how do you embody your role in a balanced way? And from there to look at the other roles in life, such as the masculine / feminine balance in a comparable way.

About Kasper van der Meulen
Kasper van der Meulen is a breathwork specialist, science teacher and musician. He has spent the past decade studying every modality related to lifestyle optimization and self-mastery. This has led him to find conscious breathing to be the most powerful and direct tool to enhance our state of being. Kasper is on a mission to bridge the gap between ancient spiritual practice, modern scientific insight and practical application for daily life. He has taught thousands of people to hack their state with breath, including elite performers like top CEO’s, spec-ops and Olympic athletes. He now runs a cutting edge “Breathwork Masterclass” where he teaches wellness professionals to harness the power of breath as a coaching tool. He leads large groups of people through breathwork with guidance of his live soundscapes and handpan music. 

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