Watch a martial artist throw a needle through a pane of glass


Originally published at:


Hmm - looked less like a needle and more like a thing metal pin. But still, thinking that technique and the speed of the throw is the key here. With almost no surface area at the tip, all of the force is concentrated on one point. Like if you took a needle and tapped with with a hammer it would do the same thing. I am sure those monks are fairly strong and and whip it at quite a speed. Since they had the camera there, they could have even measured their throwing speed vs the average guys speed.


Because “Guy throws metal rod designed for throwing at a thin pane of glass where it bounces off but still causes enough glass to break thus popping a balloon” is a really cumbersome title.


What use is poison on the needle if it bounces off of the glass?


I looked at the medium slo-mo of each. They both threw the pin from about 1 foot away from the glass, so the distance appears approximately the same. Judging from how much time is between the release of the pin and the impact on the glass, the youtuber appears to throw it at about half the velocity, compared to the martial artist. There is a wrist whipping action that the youtube guy doesn’t have.


I bet it is akin to people who can get playing cards to stick into things. Cut bananas etc. You learn the technique. No magic involved :wink:


Magic is just a synonym for the unknown.

I bet you are right: the pin throwing wrist is the same action the card people have, maybe even really good ping-pongers too.


Not nearly as impressive as I expected it to be.


It does come across as a parlor trick doesn’t it? Bit of a letdown after the mystical eastern woo hype that went into it.


A tungsten carbide tip would help, and a very rigid steel pin so it has less flex or “give”.


Yeah, yeah, yeah, but let’s see his curveball.


More like “Throws blunted thin metal dowel at glass, not through.”

Was expecting a pointed pin of any size penetrating and exiting other side of glass and then the pin pops the balloon. Oh well. 2/5 Olympic score from the Canadian armchair critic. :grin:


Maybe a depleted uranium pin with a tungsten carbide penetrator? Handcrafted by Shaolin Monks for centuries using their ancient techniques.


or a tiny bit of ceramic


Or in general: hard and sharp things thrown with force can break glass. The amount of force needed varies by how hard and sharp the object is.


Also known as spallation.

A real problem for satellites where even if a meteoroid doesn’t penetrate the hull, the impact can kick fragments off the inner wall which cause damage to components.


That’s what she said.

Edit: Realising the above comment fits the next half dozen comments… :smirk:


I watched this a couple times before it went up on BB. Spoiler at bottom.

The amazing thing is that the monks don’t wear eye protection. Glass flakes in the eyes are no fun at all, they’re incredibly annoying and quite damaging.

The needle doesn’t go through the pane of glass. It bounces off but throws a chunk of spall off the back of the glass which pops the balloon.


The monks do engage their safety squints.


I’d be watching from the stands.