What is the biggest force (Newtons) ever recorded for an impact from the human body from a reliable source?

Is there an upper limit to the power of any human impact whether it'd be a kick, punch, elbow strike, etc.

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    I'm not sure this fits within the guidelines in How to Ask; I don't know how you define "most powerful", or why "on tape"? – MCW Aug 13 '14 at 11:05
  • I've remember seeing a promotionnal video back in the days about mike tyson and I remember it saying that his punch were registered to have the same impact as a horse's kick ... go no idea if it was true or not. According to wikipedia, he was rated 16 in the "strongest puncher in history" ... so you can probably go look for who was #1 and it'll give you a cue about what look for. – Thierry Savard Saucier Aug 13 '14 at 11:26
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    Not really sure why this question is receiving downvotes, other than that it is so brief. I was tempted to downvote myself, but then I read it again. I think this question could definitely be revised to include what the asker means by "powerful". Otherwise, we can reasonably assume most psi. Deformation of tissue is too difficult to measure. – The Wudang Kid Aug 13 '14 at 15:34
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    probably some guys who's parachute malfunctioned :) – Keith Nicholas Aug 13 '14 at 23:40
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is about useless speculation without any link to martial arts. – Sardathrion - against SE abuse May 11 '15 at 6:31

National Geographic did a fight science segment on martial arts kicks, featuring karate, tae kwon do and muay thai against capoeira.

I was a little disappointed, in that they had Simon Rhee (karate) doing a front kick. Just because of the angles, motion and muscle involvement you will never get a front kick that outperforms a round or side kick. (Especially with the push style that he used, I don't know if that was his choice or not. If I were recording a front kick for force, I'd use a horizontal target and select a rising instep {think groin shot} type of kick instead).

In the end, the capoeira kick produced 1800 lbs of force, and the karate round house produced 2300 lbs of force. However, the capoeira kick produced more force in relation to speed of the kick.

While I cannot definitively say that is the highest ever recorded, it's probably up there because the impact sensors and dynamometers are recent inventions available to general public.

I would venture, though, that there have been kicks that surpassed that that are on video in some of the full contact fights, etc., but don't "count" because we don't know the exact force produced.

  • IKR, It wasn't fair to put a front kick against a roundhouse. kinda an unfair contest, if you will... – coltonon Aug 18 '14 at 5:18
  • @coltonon: To be fair, they asked each of the practitioners to "use their most powerful technique". But yeah, they ought to have either found one technique to be done by all of them or tested multiple techniques to find the one that generates the most force. – Macaco Branco Aug 18 '14 at 18:40

The strongest punch on tape was probably Ivan Drago as you can see in this video.

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    I don't see why I should get a downvote. My answer references sources and it fulfills all the criteria set out in the question. – Captain Kenpachi Aug 14 '14 at 7:04
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    Because Ivan Drago is a fictional character in a movie, and you have no clue whether the numbers on the puncho-meter-a-tron are actual or movie magic. And, given that a fight science segment on martial arts kicks only produced one kick that outperformed the punch, I would very much doubt the movie figures. youtube.com/watch?v=lcAfClb-f4g – JohnP Aug 14 '14 at 14:38
  • The [original] question was which punch captured on film was the hardest. I think my answer was legit given the parameters. – Captain Kenpachi Aug 14 '14 at 14:42
  • Yeah, sorry. I tried to make this into a better question as it was pretty poor to start off with. Maybe a mistake... – Sardathrion - against SE abuse Aug 14 '14 at 14:52
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    @Sardathrion - Not at all. 16 more upvotes and a couple down on the OP and I get the Reversal badge. Shiny. :) – JohnP Aug 14 '14 at 22:44

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