This thread on strategies for crossing a weak bridge reminded me of a passage in a kids book: Cannibal Adventure by Willard Price There's a scene where Hal and Roger Hunt are required to enter a village (as honored guests) by walking over the bodies of the village women. Hal takes a "when in Rome" attitude and walks normally, but Roger is concerned about hurting the ladies so he runs over their bodies "stepping lightly"... leaving aside the period ignorance (racism, sexism etc), would Roger's strategy actually work? I think the idea comes up a lot: going fast may apply more force but for less time - so there is net less damage. But I'm inclined to think, all else remaining equal, that going fast is a bad idea. OK - Roger shouldn't just stand on someones belly for like minutes at a time... but perhaps he should spend as little time as possible on just one foot - so his weight is distributed between two people? Could be one for the Mythbusters? The team could take turns walking over Adam? Note: If talking about using people like this is distressing - imagine these are weak boards on a suspension bridge or something. Or maybe these are adults trying to get children to safety by making a bridge of their bodies - how should they instruct the kids to walk?