Apparently “ear rumbling” is a thing, and only some people can do it

Only a certain percentage of people can create this rumbling sound in their ears, which involves voluntarily controlling the tensor tympani muscle.

Here we go again. Earlier this month we reported on a tweet that went viral after explaining that not everyone has an internal monologue.

Now the next whacky fact has picked up traction and it’s this: some people can make noises inside their own ears.

ear rumbling

The source of the information is another tweet, which itself references a fact from 1884.

“A part of the human population can voluntarily control the tensor tympani, a muscle within the ear,” the tweet describes. “Contracting this muscle produces vibration and sound. The sound is usually described as a rumbling sound.”

A mysterious rumbling sound eh? The tweet is really *resonating* with people, dividing them into two groups: people who can make the sound, and people who can’t.

For those who can, there’s even an already existing subreddit called Ear Rumblers Assemble where you can go and talk about it with fellow ear rumblers.

And for those who can’t do it, the subreddit even contains a list of steps to help you figure it out, aptly titled, Guide: How to check if you can Voluntarily Ear Rumble.


I bet he’s thinking about other women.. from r/earrumblersassemble

Since the tweet, a survey has now also been conducted, with the findings reporting that “16% of people report they can voluntary ear rumble in isolation (& after reading a description 75% report ear rumbling with other movements such as yawning – 62% were already aware).”

Apparently there are all types of ear rumbling and some people can control the volume whilst others can control the pitch. People around the world have offered their individual experiences of the phenomenon.

One Reddit user commented: “I love that this is a sub. Can most people do it in both ears? It’s much stronger in my left.”

To which another user responded: “I can do my right ear for about 1 second before my left ear kicks in. And that’s with some strain.”

“Always in stereo for me. No left/right balance control” said another.

“Same here chief. Stereo only” agreed another.

Happy rumbling kids.


What the 90’s were like. from r/earrumblersassemble

Next up: Neil deGrasse Tyson reminds us why it would be a bad idea to smoke weed in space.