If we are talking about a 1" thick by 1' square board, it's one of those
that is easily breakable. Support it on the edges and give it a lusty
whack along the grain with your fist (head, foot...) and it will break.
Sorta like crushing an aluminum beer can in your manly hand. :-)
My teacher (Wing Chung) said that it taked about 6 lb. of pressure to
break this type of board, about what it takes to break a rib. I tried a
12x12x1 inch piece of ash. It takes a whole lot more pressure to break
I was taught that ribs break at 75 lbs. Given what it takes to
bust them doing CPR, I'd say that's about right. If it only took
6 lbs, every kid in a fight would have a flail chest. The grain
direction is what makes the karate boards easier to break than the
Dave in Fairfax
"Breaking boards" are cut with the long dimension cross-grain and are
made of pine.
Pine will hurt you if you wimp out . . . most of the battle in breaking
boards is not stopping. LONG ago in Engineering Physics, we watched a
high speed film of successful and unsuccessful "breaking" attempts.
In an unsuccessful attempt, the board vibrates back into the hand
But so long as you strike THROUGH, you'll succeed.
Block is similar. Watch Side Kicks (if you must) or any big Martial
Arts demo. They break 8" block across the weak dimension.
When they break 12" solid cast footing, I'll be impressed.
Having a daughter who's been involved in TaeKwonDo for several years, I've
held many a board in tournements and testings. I can assure you they dont
all break easy. When your holding 8 boards (12*12*1) while a 200 lb 18 year
old takes 6 attempts to break them your wrists end up in bad shape. The kick
that finally breaks them feels so easy compared to the others - got to hit
right in the middle and drive through.
And if they miss and crush your fingures.............
I'll be it's wide grained and has no knots. Typical of what they used when
there was a demonstration day in the club I attended. I have to admit, I
miss the people I met there. Friendliest and most sociable people you'd ever
want to meet.
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