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SO,

  • Humanoid
  • ~6' tall
  • long strong legs with possibly better-than-human-muscles

  1. How can at least 30ft be accomplished or even more?

I was hoping just super strong thighs, but if that's not enough perhapse a slow wind-up period while "tension is accumulated" into the legs through some sort of organic-hydraulic-preassure-builder that I imagine is possible somehow (suggestions to that would be welcome). Or even a rubber band like effect a la Luffy?

How can it be done and is it feasible (Guran in the answers has explained that it is feasible, thanks!)?

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  • $\begingroup$ Does it have to be a standing jump, or can your humanoid make a running start, add a somersault to build up momentum etc? $\endgroup$ – Guran Sep 13 '17 at 6:19
  • $\begingroup$ Either way, as long as the shape is humanoid the creature may do whatever you can imagine, even if that means bending or readjusting the skeleton specifically for the jump and reverting back. Thank you for thinking about my question! $\endgroup$ – Roshiron Sep 13 '17 at 14:54
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    $\begingroup$ It's a rather different question on the face of it (and it's not about humanoids), but you may still be interested in my older question What would be required for a large mammal to realistically throw its own kind a significant distance? Some of the discussion in the answers there may apply to your scenario as well, as throwing isn't all that different from jumping, except that you are typically using a different set of limbs to impart the force. $\endgroup$ – a CVn Sep 14 '17 at 11:11
  • $\begingroup$ Given enough road to speed up, a good racing bicycle and a ramp, any well-trained cyclist should be able to jump 30 ft high. Landing would be a problem though. (On a relatively low speed BMX bike the record is 16 ft: youtube.com/watch?v=ueMThvrfSO4 ) $\endgroup$ – Swier Sep 14 '17 at 16:01
  • $\begingroup$ I prefer a more biological approach, but thank you for the tip! ^_^ $\endgroup$ – Roshiron Sep 14 '17 at 18:50
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I am presuming you mean jumping on Earth since otherwise it can be made trivial. 9 m correspond to potential energy 90 J/kg. So you will need speed 13.5 m/s.

Suppose length of the jumping kick is 1 m. You will need 90 m/s2 push that would last 0.15 second, 90 J/kg, specific power would be 600 W/kg. An athlete lifting the weight does about 20 W/kg, 30 times less! And his body already have about 60% of muscles!

Muscles contract slowly so our limbs are lever-like - short and slow but powerful movement of muscle is turned by bone-levers into fast, but less powerful movement of the limbs. So you cannot just make creature from 90% of muscles - it would need a lot of bones for a jump like this.

Cheetah's power is about 90 W/kg - 7 times less. I suppose that by extreme selection(only white muscles, lowest strength of bones, no hands, no endurance, etc.) you could produce creature like this, but I just don't see it happening in nature and it would be little use for anything else than jumping.

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  • $\begingroup$ With lower strength of bones the legs would simply be crushed by the effort of jumping. $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch - Reinstate Monica Sep 13 '17 at 5:00
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    $\begingroup$ Obviously the parameter that must change here is the 1m accelleration length. Some remodelling of the legs (prolonged feet and toes) in combination with a jumping technique that involves more than a simple standing jump... $\endgroup$ – Guran Sep 13 '17 at 6:22
  • $\begingroup$ When Vashu said "90% of muscles" all I could think of was the Hulk (2003) movie where the hulk jumps across the landscape. That would be awesome! Any chance that could be possible? Not a chance right? $\endgroup$ – Roshiron Sep 13 '17 at 15:52
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It is feasible, though probably not with a standing jump.

You ask for 30' ie roughly 9m. Let's compare that to what a human can do as a base for what a humanoid engineered specifically for high jumps might achieve.

The highest recorded standing jump is 1.6m (5.3ft) ~18% of your goal.

The world record high jump is 2.45m (8ft) ~27% of your goal. Still quite far off.

The world record for pole vault, however, is 6.16m (20ft). Now we're getting close!

You might consider pole vaulting to be cheating, but the pole itself does not add any energy to the athlete, it is merely an aid to convert horizontal running speed to vertical launch speed. Your engineered humanoid might use a specialized leg in the same manner.

From Vashus answer we have that a 30' jump requires a vertical launch speed of 13.5 m/s. Usain Bolt tops out at about 12.4 m/s.

So a top human sprinter with perfect technique might jump 7,8m (25.7ft) ie the physical limits of real humans is somewhere around 85% of your goal for a fantasy humanoid engineered specifically for high jumps.

The jury is in, 30' high jumps are not unrealistic, if you allow for a more elaborate technique than a standing jump.

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  • $\begingroup$ So it's in the realm of possibility, thank you for the validation. However what do you mean by "specialized leg"? It's hard for me to imagine a leg that can emulate a pole. You also say at the end that 30' can be done if I allow for a more elaborate technique, was that mentioning the "specialized leg" or were you referring to something else altogether? I apologize for having an imagination that's lacking in this department. $\endgroup$ – Roshiron Sep 14 '17 at 14:38
  • $\begingroup$ I was thinking along the lines of how a long-legged humanoid could plant and "lock" one leg far ahead of it's body while running to transfer horizontal speed to an upward motion. The "elaborate techique" is just a caveat that a humanoid might not be able to simply spring 30' into the air grasshopper style. $\endgroup$ – Guran Sep 15 '17 at 7:05
  • $\begingroup$ I see, thank you for the idea Guran. $\endgroup$ – Roshiron Sep 15 '17 at 19:36

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