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CougTek

How much weight our chest can sustain before collapsing?

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Hi,

I'm wondering about this since yesterday. I was training on the bench press like I often do. At the end of my training session, when my muscles were almost completly fed up, I tried one last serie. It was a pretty low charge, but I was very exhausted. What had to happen happened and I got stuck below the bar when I was unable to lift it for the tenth time. No big deal, I knew I was able to sit even with the bar on my chest (I already did it with a much heavier bar).

Nonetheless, the few seconds that the bar rested on my chest, the pressure was pretty high and I had a hard time breathing. I knew it would take more than that to crush my ribs, but I wonder how much more it would take. I once heard, in a Jacques-Yves Cousteau program, that human chest crushes under pressure at ~180 meters depth under water. I don't know how to translate it in absolute weight though.

I would like to know because I want to be aware when I lift a potentially lethal charge on the bench press, assuming that I can lift that much.

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I've seen people rest 300+ pound bars on their chest, when they have exhausted their muscles doing bench press. These people usually have quite a bit of mass between the bar and their ribs, though!

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Just a sidenote, but I had a friend die in junior high doing bench presses. please, for the sake of your health, use a spotter. If you don't have one, stick to reps.

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Sean,

Although I'm pretty sure that I wouldn't die with the charge your friend tried to lift in high school (bones aren't as though when you're a teenager as when you're 25+), how many pounds (or kilos) were enough to crush him.

P.S. Sorry to bring you old memories, I'm just trying to determine what's dangerous and what's shouldn't be.

Axl,

So far, I've been rather cautious and I never pushed too hard (try to do the famous 'just one more') with charges close to my maximum. The heavier I ever let rest on my chest was 200 pounds, again because I was exhausted and at the end of my training session.

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I've had 260lbs. on my chest with no problem.

Hm. Wish I had some free weights now...

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Well I've seen some crazy dudes have pick up trucks loaded with 4 or 5 people in the loading bed drive over a plank placed on their chest/stomach area. But I don't know how much one can take sitting on their ribs.

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The amount of weight the chest can sustain is directly related to the strength of the muscles in the chest. Once you strip away the muscle, the bones in and of themselves, unless otherwise effected by some condition or disorder are going to have substantially less variance in strength from person to person. It's the flesh surrounding bone that makes the bone strong. These descended-testical strong man competition participants must keep their muscles absolutely flexed in order to sustain the weight. If they relaxed for even a moment, the strength of their chest will be reduced to that of any other person.

Still, it's no wonder why people with disgustingly large muscles are said to have small... brains, and small, err, well you know. The amount of blood that is required to feed these muscles with fresh oxygen must certainly take a toll on other parts of the body. After a certain point, the health benefits of muscle mass are reduced to that of obesity in terms of the load on the heart. The diets may be far less healthier as well. The typical diet of boiled chicken breasts any celery sticks isn't exactly a balanced diet.

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well this question is way too general to create

a ubiquitous standard for pressure/weight threshold

of a human chest. Because of age, bone structure,

weight, etc.... lots to list.

But you can use the ~180 meters to derive a maximum threshold. (I'm guessing). I've never been deeper than 6 feet.

Atmospheric pressure is 1.01x10^5 Pascals (or 1 atm)

Water Density is 1000 kg/m^3

to get the total pressure we use

Archimedes Formula: p1 = p0 + pwgh

p1 is total pressure, p0 is atmospheric pressure.

pw is water density

p1 = 1.01x10^5 + 1000*9.8*180

p1 = 1.8653x10^6 Pascals

This is the total pressure at any point taken from

a horizontal slice of water at a depth of 180 meters.

Since Pressure = Force / Area

1.8653x10^6 Pascal's * (your Surface Area) = Force

say an average person's height(h) is 5.8ft = 1.76 meters

and lets pretend the human's dimension is close to a cylinder..heh..

say radius of 36 cm = .36 meters

surface area of a cylinder: 2 * pi * r *h

Therefore we have: F = 1.8653x10^6 * [2 * 3.1416 * (.36) * 1.76]

F = 1.2673x10^6 Newtons total force at any point on your body.

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yes, well said sean. That works inversely as well with negative results.

Say a genius, Einstein, or Newton. Their thought process and brain

activity is a constant exhaustion for their body. Their lifespan is shortened

because of the overhaul that they put on their brain. After 10, 20 years serious illnesses or genetic diseases seep in, because the body becomes more prone to them. Lifespan is mainly genetics. But disease, pollution, stress, etc... always make it shorter. (dad's a surgeon)

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Thanks Khosw for the mathematical demonstration.

NRG,

The guys who let a truck roll on a plank over them cannot be compared to what someone can sustain with a thin bar on a bench. The truck's weight is spread over a ~1 feet² area at least when it rolls on a plank. The bar that we use to lift weights on a bench is ~1 inch thick, so the pressure is much greater in this case because the area where the weight is applied is much smaller. If the weight of the truck was applied on a thin steel bar, you can bet all you have that no one could sustain that bar on his chest.

Sean,

Although I don't think I have disgustingly large muscles, I don't think my above-average muscular mass affects my intellectual capacities, neither those of Mercutio (who is a fairly substantial man too). I'm sure that the brain has a higher priority level than other muscles in the way our body distributes blood.

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above average is simply fitness; nothing wrong with that cougtek. If you are into competitive lifting where your entire life revolves around body sculpting, then let your doctor judge for you the health benefits.

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If you are into competitive lifting where your entire life revolves around body sculpting,...

No, of course not. There's a part of my life that goes for StorageReview too ;-)

And to many other things...

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Nice formula khosw, but it can't be applied to human anatomy/physiology... I'm sorry, it misses many parameters. :roll:

(this is almost always the case when engineering students try to mess with biomedical problems, no offense here, I've noticed it many times when we call guys from the respective departments to help with postulating formulas for the analysis of experimental results... :P )

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The Giver has no problem when benching 450. More if he uses both hands.

BTW - 180' water = 77.92 PSI (2.31' of water in a column = 1 PSIG ); Force= Pressure X Area; The Area represented by your body under water is considerably larger than that of a weight bar resting on your chest. Therefore the pounds of force in that situation is far greater as well. If your chest represents 12" (height) X 48" (circumference) for a total of 576 inches squared X 77.92PSI = 44,882 lbs of force on your chest when at a depth of 180'. Therefore we can assume terminal force in pounds to be 44,882.

If we assume the average area in contact with the chest of a weight lifting bar is 24 inches squared (1" width X 24" across) and divide 44,882 (terminal force) by 24 we get 1870 lbs of weight required to equal the same amount of force as is seen by the human body when at a depth of 180'. In other words CougTek - No worries mate! 8)

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The Giver has no problem when benching 450. More if he uses both hands.

Lol! You're talking about 450g aren't you? ;-)

1870lbs. Wow. Somehow, I think less would be lethal though.

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Not grams but Pints 8)

Your right about it probably taking less than 1870lbs. Here's the thing, the 180' water depth is misleading. The true limiting factor one would think is the pressure differential at a given depth. That is the pressure differential between the compressed air in ones lungs and the pressure of the water outside.

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How much weights a pint (in grams)?
Hmm.. The Giver will leave it to the foreign hordes to elaborate on how much a Pint weighs in the uncivilized world. Here is the US a Pint is usually a tall glass with a bit of foam on top containing about 16oz of fine malt.

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16oz = 1lbs, so 1 Pint must equal 1 pound.

1 pound = 0.45353Kg or 453.53g

I think The Giver can only lift 450 Pints with one arm in his dreams, but that's just my opinion ;-)

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How much a pint weighs depends on the density of the liquid - a pint of water will weigh roughly one pound... (very roughly)

The guys who let a truck roll on a plank over them cannot be compared

I know, thats why I said I didn't know how much one can take on their ribs alone - or thats what I meant to say :wink:

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16oz = 1lbs, so 1 Pint must equal 1 pound.

1 pound = 0.45353Kg or 453.53g

I think The Giver can only lift 450 Pints with one arm in his dreams, but that's just my opinion ;-)

You dare question The Givers integrity?!?

'Twas only a joke my friend from the great white north... a "Pint" as in a Pint of beer is what he meant. Get it?

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Giver,

Ah ok, now I get it. Must have had too much blood directed to my disgusting muscles when I read your post ;-)

BTW NRG,

I saw that StorageReview wasn't on the links' page of your web site. For a guy who once had +2000 posts here, it is unacceptable. CORRECT THIS IMMEDIATELY!

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Coug: I took it off because I guess it would be closing down :-(

Anyhow, that site is far from done... lots of stuff to do still.

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Give us the Metric system... the Imperial sucks... :twisted:

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Give us the Metric system... the Imperial sucks...  :twisted:

In general I agree, except for the way the rest of the world measures temperature...

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