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Jelly running tracks

running in confined spaces - use jelly block as brake
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If you had limited space for a running track then one way of seeing who wins a race would be to have a large block of jelly. Then runners would accelerate to full speed and slap straight into it. the one who gets furthest into the jelly, i.e., has maximum speed or momentum, is the winner.

I'm not sure how people would breath once they got into the jelly but I like the image of several runners stuck in stasis in running pose.

I'm not sure what physical characteristics would need to optimised - someone with high momentum (mass x speed) and a low frontal area, I suppose. Mass might relate to muscle, so the distance into jelly might well map across into what they would have done in full length sprint.

mkirksmith, Dec 09 2001

Swimming in custard http://www.halfbake...0swimming#993023529
Related halfbakery idea. [hippo, Dec 10 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]

Diving into chocolate http://www.halfbake...er_20Bunny_20Diving
Related halfbakery idea. (Do we need a "Sport in food" category?) [hippo, Dec 10 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]

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       Runners would slowly evolve to have optimum frontal area: jelly bellies.
bristolz, Dec 09 2001
  

       The Dessert Games?
phoenix, Dec 09 2001
  

       The winner doesn't necessarily have to have the most speed or velocity...so what happens when the last place winner is the biggest and can get the furthest into the jelly even though he got beat by a number of people? The block of jelly, as well, would have to be human size -- and on a hot day, this idea would melt as quickly as the jelly.
jimithing, Dec 10 2001
  

       Why not just use custard instead?
jester, Dec 10 2001
  

       Well, custard would fall over - it's not solid (at least not the custard we have). Also, you can't see into it to measure how far people had got.   

       A related notion would be to pour quick setting jelly into a swimming pool. I suppose this could be used where you only have a shallow pool and needed to break drivers in competition (you'd still mark them as they dove down).
mkirksmith, Dec 10 2001
  

       ...and some athletes might cheat by trying to eat their way through it :-)
originalsen, Jun 24 2004
  

       You might want to consider Aerogel instead, 99.99% air, yet dense. Has been used on recent comet chasing missions to retrieve dust from comet trails. Not sure if you could breath through the stuff but it might be safer than jelly.
ayt, Jun 24 2004
  

       Aerogel is hard--it would hurt to run into that.
5th Earth, Jun 24 2004
  
      
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