Imagine hurtling down an icy curved tunnel on a tiny sled, feet first with no brakes, and zero ability to see what’s in front of you. These are the stakes for luge. As one of the most dangerous sports in the winter Olympic games, ice luge athletes have to keep their heads level while withstanding high speeds, upwards of 80MPH. At that speed, athletes experience tremendous g-forces, or forces of gravity on their body. As they pick up speed on various turns, they can experience anywhere from 3 to 5gs; that’s 5x the weight of their own body being forced on them. Despite these tremendous forces, athletes have to maintain a sense of balance and calm, making subtle motions with their calves to prepare the sled to go from a straight away, to a vertical banked wall.
Experience what it’s like to ride on the back of one of these luge sleds, making turns and careening down the track at top speeds. We dare you to try this in a headset.