Iron body – part II. Breaking stones and concrete

Yet another one of the strongman’s classic tricks , this is a variation on the ‘iron body’. The effect is perhaps even more striking than the original ‘iron body’, and eventhough it looks somewhat painful and dangerous, it is actually quite safe, and relatively easy to perform…

Lie in between two chairs, and get an assistant to place a large stone or piece of concrete on top of you… Equip them with a sledgehammer, and ask them to break the stone. Think you couldn’t withstand their blows? Think again…

Iron Body – Part II. Breaking Stones And Concrete – More bloopers are a click away

Safety precautions.
If your assistant is going to break a stone or or a piece of concrete which they have placed on your chest, make sure to wear safety glasses, as fragments could easily fly into your face.
The chairs you are lying on also need to be sturdy enough, so as not to collapse when you are hit.
Also, if the stone or block of concrete is heavy (it should be, we will discuss why later), make sure your assistant lift it correctly, so they would not damage their back.

setting it up.
Simply lie between the two chairs, maybe using a third chair to support your weight initially.

The effect.
Get your assistant to place the block of concrete or the stone on your chest, then to break it with the sledgehammer.
It’s that simple!

How it works – weight distribution
Just as for the original iron body, correct weight distribution is one of the reason you do not double-up and collapse under the weight of the stone…
Simply have the stone placed on your chest rather than on your stomach.

How it works – inertia
So why are you not getting hurt by the blow of the sledgehammer?
One simple reason: inertia.

Do this simple experiment to understand it:
– place a small stone in your hand and try to break it with a hammer.
– now repeat with as large a stone you can hold in one hand.
Which hurt?

The larger the stone or block of concrete placed on your chest, the less you will feel the blow, as it will simply absorb the force of the impact.
Do make sure however your assistant does not drive the sledgehammer straight through the stone, and into you. They should only be using enough force to break the stone.

Luckily for us, the bigger the stone placed on your chest is, the more impressive the trick will also look to the audience!