General Question

neonez's avatar

Why don't people run sideways when being "chased" by large rolling objects?

Asked by neonez (389points) February 16th, 2008

It seems that if one were to run at a 90 degree angle to the path of said object, it would be elementary to survive.

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14 Answers

El_Cadejo's avatar

what if your being chased down a tunnel?

neonez's avatar

what if you aren’t?

(duck into the space between the ball and the corner of the tunnel)

Foolaholic's avatar

It all depends on your context. If you’re watching someone being chased in a movie, or course they’re going to keep directly in front of the thing; that’ll make the plot more dramatic. Or maybe your playing a video game, in which case the whole trial is probably a test of speed that you have to overcome.

Jonsonite's avatar

Perhaps in his panic, the individual doesn’t think of moving perpendicularly. Also, moving directly away instinctually feels better because you’re maximizing distance between yourself and the object—you “lose ground” faster if you move perpendicular. The lost ground doesn’t matter if it’s a fixed-path object, but maybe our instincts are honed for escaping variable-path objects like tigers.

gooch's avatar

I run sideways if it helps

ironhiway's avatar

Next time I’m being chased by a large rolling object I’ll keep that in mind.

andrew's avatar

Relatedly: Isn’t there something about running toward the sound of mortars?

neonez's avatar

@andrew: That is weird. I tend to avoid explosives if at all possible

syz's avatar

It’s the same movie rule that causes all running women to twist an ankle and fall down when being chased.

gooch's avatar

@neonez if you can’t hear a mortar you are in it’s striking point. So if some other troop yells incoming and you don’t hear anything don’t just drop…run until you hear it then drop for cover.

syz's avatar

It’s also the same premise that causes people in a spooky old house to open the door that has the creepy noises coming from it….....

syz's avatar

And (granted, this is from older movies) people in cars being chased by thugs on motorcycles panic and freak out rather than just running them down.

neonez's avatar

@gooch: Thanks, I’ll keep that in mind.

noctowl's avatar

because Indiana jones would have sucked if he did that…

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