Break that Sucka!
Karate Breaking Techniques were the rage back in 1967. This was because Karate, and other martial ars like Kung Fu and Taekwondo were new to the land. Nobody knew anything back then, and darn, if you could break a board…why, you could break a man’s skull!
There are some interesting things about a skull, and let me preface this article on karate breaking methods with a rather fascinating datum.
While a skull is hard and rigid, it is easy to break. To prove this take an egg out of your refrigerator, hold it in your palm, and…without using the fingers!…squeeze.
As hard as you squeeze, that egg is going to laugh at you.
Now, use your fingers, and clean up the gooey mess. If you squeeze a skull it ain’t gonna break. If you poke it soft enough, it will. How soft? Fifteen pounds of pressure per square inch is enough to break a skull.
There are a lot of variables, of course. The skull bone differs in thickness. Hair cushions. And so on. Which puts the real force required somewhere between 16 and 196 pounds. Hit a fellow in the side of the skull, right behind and above the eyes, and the bone is thin, and it might take only 15 pounds of pressure to break that puppy. But thee are some places where the bone is thick and the pressure could take 200 pounds easy.
But, that said, a karate strike, properly done, will range from 300 to 400 pounds of pressure. That should be more than enough to crack up a skull.
So what stops a skull from being cracked when a karate punch is applied to it?
First, a skull in motion is harder to break than a skull in place.
A karate punch will frequently glance off a head moving frantically out of the way. In other words, you have to have the intended target hold still so that a perfect karate strike can be focused exactly if you wish to increase your breaking chances.
Second, speaking of moving out of the way, if a surface is pliable it will resist breaking much more than a surface that is rigid. This is to say that a skull being karate kicked will move back, thus dissipating force; which is to say that if you want to do your karate breaking techniques on a human style head, it would be nice if that skull would lay down on a concrete surface with no give.
And, speaking of karate breaking techniques, we come to the juice of this martial arts article. If you want to break a cranium, you need to practice your martial arts breaking techniques on similar objects first.
Start with Karate board breaking.
To build your break a board technique, start with one board. Number two pine, an inch thick, 12 by 12.
Once successful, go to two boards, three boards, and so on.
And, do not put pencils between the boards. Putting pencils at the edges creates space in the material being broken, and while a bunch of boards makes it look like karate breaking is awesome, the truth is that you can only break five or six boards with no spacers, but you can break up to 20 boards with spacers.
So be honest. Don’t go for the yell of the crowd at a karate breaking demonstration…go for the inner satisfaction of being able to break only a piddling five or six boards with no spacers. This presents the question of whether you wish to impress impressionable young minds, or build your inner strength of character.
And, speaking of honest board breaking techniques, don’t go leaving your boards out in the sun for a few days prior to your breaking exhibition. Dried boards break easier than regular boards. Like kindling, as a matter of fact.
But, on the same token, don’t let your boards get wet before you break them. Your iron hand kung fu technique will turn into mushy hospital visitation rights.
And, that is about all there is to breaking boards, and, if you insist, upon karate breaking human skulls.
But…if you wish to do karate breaks on skulls, let me offer the obligatory caution: detached retinas, brain hemorrhage, fractured bones, and permanent neurological disorders. All of which translates to slurred and halting speech, let alone cauliflower ears and big, old puffy noses and…over 6 deaths a year in the boxing ring.
So practice your karate breaking technique, and do it for real, as if you really had to break a skull, but settle for perfection of character by resisting the urge to violence.
Here is an hilarious anecdote about a fellow who knocked himself out with karate breaking techniques. If you want to actually learn Karate well enough to break skulls, click on Matrix Karate at Monster Martial Arts.
Here’s a great article on Karate Breaking Techniques. If you want to start work on really advanced Karate, here’s a book on how to Build Chi Power.