Neurosurgeons have described in information how Michael Jackson accomplished biomechanically impossible dance moves in his music video Smooth Criminal.

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In the 1987 routine, Michael leans indigenous the ankle in ~ a 45 degree angle, while keeping his body right as a rod.

The illusion, which many have tried come copy, was thanks to specially designed shoes and also the artist's core strength.

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Manjul Tripathi and colleagues from the Postgraduate institute of clinical Education and Research in Chandigarh, India, speak in the journal of Neurosurgery: Spine: "Most trained dancers with strong core stamin will with a maximum of 25 to 30 levels of forward bending if performing this action. MJ pulled turn off a gravity-defying 45 degree move that appears unearthly to any type of witness."

Image source, RUBEN RAMOS

If a human were to attempt the Smooth Criminal lean, lock would an alert that the mass of the stress, overload to win the pose move to the Achilles tendon in every ankle, rather than the erector spinae muscles of the back.

This allows for just a very limited degree of front bend, even for someone corresponding Michael's solid athletic abilities, defines Assistant Prof Tripathi.

A v-shaped slit in the bottom that each heel of his spats slotted top top a strong nail or "hitch member" driven right into the ground, enabling the dancer to pivot and lean further forward, because that the gravity-defying move.

Image source, Manjul Tripathi

Prior to the patented footwear invention, Michael had relied on supporting cables and a harness about his belt to produce the illusion.

It's stated that he and two Hollywood colleagues borrowed the footwear idea from united state astronauts' boots, which have the right to be docked to a addressed rail when working in zero gravity.

But even with specially design footwear and the support of the hitch member, the relocate is extremely hard to traction off, requiring strong core toughness from strengthened spinal and also lower-limb muscles, say the doctors.

"Several MJ fans, including the authors, have tried to copy this move and also failed, often injuring themselves in your endeavours," they caution.

Dr Tripathi said: "The opportunities of injury to the ankle are significant. Friend need strong core muscles and great support roughly the ankle. It's not a basic trick."