Why is it that a person can lie down on a bed of nails unharmed?I need a short answer.



1 Answer | Add Yours

mvcdc's profile pic

Posted on (Answer #1)

A person can lie down on a bed of nails unharmed because the pressure of the body are distributed and not concentrated on a single point (which would definitely cause harm).

Further explanation follows:

Pressure is the ratio between force and area -- amount of force applied per unit area (F/A). If you tip-toe on a nail, the force you exert is concentrated on a very small area (tip of the nail). This results to a very large pressure which eventually will puncture your skin causing the nail to harm you. However, when you lie down a bed of nails, the force you exert (which is the same, since this is basically your weight) is now distributed over a lot of nails, and hence a much larger area. This reduces pressure by increasing the area, given the same amount of force. Hence, it is less painful, and sometimes, no harm is done.


We’ve answered 397,510 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question