In the movie Bloodsport, which claims to be based on a true story, the lead character is challenged to break one brick at the bottom of a stack, using only his hands. He successfully causes the bottom brick to disintegrate by striking the top brick with his palm.

Jean Claude breaking a brick (source)

Is it possible to consistently break only the bottom brick in a stack with just your hands, in the manner portrayed in the film?

Related Question: Is breaking bricks/wood "karate style" an impressive feat?

  • There is a Wikipedia article and a Straight Dope article. Are you looking for something different? Feb 8, 2012 at 17:05
  • 4
    @DJClayworth only the bottom brick breaks while the rest are left intact Feb 8, 2012 at 17:17
  • 1
    This is actually quite a specific and notorious claim of (some) martial arts: the ability of masters to focus and concentrate their "chi" in a specific point in space for massive damage.
    – Sklivvz
    Feb 8, 2012 at 21:43
  • 5
    From an engineering perspective, the greatest bending stresses will be at the top and bottom of a beam. Since masonry is stronger in compression than tension, the bottom brick would be the first to break. However, this assumes the bricks are rigidly attached, with no longitudinal movement where they contact each other.
    – Doresoom
    Apr 22, 2015 at 20:01
  • 2
    A demonstration of the claim - not an answer, because it would be too easy to fake.
    – Oddthinking
    Jun 4, 2016 at 7:06


You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .