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Why Does Stepping on Legos Hurt So Much?

Published On 01/09/2017 Published On 01/09/2017

That piercing pain is familiar to just about everyone. Stepping on a Lego hurts an unreasonable amount. You step on other things all the time, but Legos seem to have a special vendetta against your feet. Possibly they're determined to see how creative your cursing can become under duress. 

Yes, you're stepping on something and that can hurt no matter what you're stepping on. But there's actually good reasons behind why Legos seem to hurt much more than other things you might find in your home. Thankfully, Simon Whistler and the Today I Found Out YouTube channel have dedicated a video to explaining the science behind why this is the case.

Their video breaks things down in depth, but for the sake of simplicity, it can be boiled to four main reasons Legos are every foot's nightmare. For starters, the sole of the foot is loaded with nerves, making it quite sensitive. That's because our feet work to keep us balanced. All the information those nerve endings receive help the brain keep you from looking like you're walking in a Monty Python sketch.

Second, there are an amazing number of Lego bricks in the world. According to Lego, there are enough Legos in the world for every person on Earth to have 83 bricks. That means they're ubiquitous and, even worse, they tend to be played with on the floor. 

Third, they have sharp corners and knobs. That will help aggravate all those nerve endings in your foot. 

Lastly, they have no give. While many toys might give when you step on them, Legos don't. A single brick can support 953 pounds before it compresses. That means when you step on a Lego, the lack of give transfers all that force right back into the sole of your foot, rather than absorbing some of the force exerted on it.

Whistler goes even more in depth in the video above. Knowing this information probably won't make you pick up Legos you see on the ground, but maybe there's some comfort to be derived from knowing that yes, Legos do hurt a whole lot when you step on them. 

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Dustin Nelson is a News Writer with Thrillist. He holds a Guinness World Record but has never met the fingernail lady. He’s written for Sports Illustrated, Rolling Stone, Men’s Journal, The Rumpus, and other digital wonderlands. Follow him @dlukenelson.

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