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Experts Finally Reveal The Secret Behind Michael Jackson’s Iconic And Unbelievable’Smooth Criminal’ Lean That Seemed To Defy The Laws Of Gravity

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Experts Finally Reveal The Secret Behind Michael Jackson’s Iconic And Unbelievable’Smooth Criminal’ Lean That Seemed To Defy The Laws Of Gravity



During his career, the King of Pop, Michael Jackson wowed audiences with his voice together with his incredible dance moves. He inspired a generation of people with his iconic dance steps. Who could forget Michael’s Moon Walk, the crotch grab, his dizzying spins, the Jackson kick and toe stand. But one particular move has fascinated viewers and experts alike, it was his gravity-defying lean seen in ‘Smooth Criminal’.




The King of Pop tilted 45 degrees in the Smooth Criminal video seemingly without any support, amazing audiences for decades. Many first seen this  move in 1987 film clip for the classic hit, Smooth Criminal. Now after years of deliberation, scientists have revealed the secret behind this famous Jackson move.





Michael Jackson repeated the iconic move many times during his live performances. Despite many professional dancers trying to emulate the move, they were unable to do so. Some came close to perfecting a similar tilt move. But none could move their body past 25-30 degrees, whereas Jackson clearly tilts to an astounding 45 degrees.

The question of how Jackson managed to pull off that move without snapping his ankles has finally been  answered.




A team of 3 neurosurgeons dedicated themselves in unraveling the secret of the his move. First, the scientists broke down the move to understand what muscles Michael used to perform the dance step. Published in the Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine, the experts said that during the move, the strain of the body is shifted from the erector spine muscles that support the spinal column to the Achilles tendon.

“This allows for a very limited degree of forward bending from the ankle joints, while keeping a stiff straight posture. Unless you are Michael Jackson. MJ pulled off a gravity-defying 45 degree move that seems unearthly to any witness,”

However, it seems Jackson didn’t possess super strong Achilles.




Instead, a patent held by the entertainer casts light on the secret. He had a special shoe designed that has a triangular hook under the heel. Researchers have looked into the gravity defying lean and come to the conclusion that the dancer’s shoes were fitted with a heel that latched onto a nail on the floor, effectively anchoring them in place and giving them the strength and security to move.




This wedge shape hooked into a special peg on the stage floor. The production crew then raises the peg up at the right moment. The shoes then locks itself to the peg.  This finally allowed the King of pop to perform the incredible feat. Although the clever design feature aided Jackson, the scientist says, the move still required incredible upper body strength.



“Even with specially designed footwear and the support of the hitch member, the move is incredibly hard to pull off. It certainly requires athletic core strength from strengthened spinal muscles and lower-limb anti-gravity muscles.”


The authors quickly noted that while some fans may be disappointed to learn the trick behind dance move, Jackson contributed enormously to the world of dance and movement. “Ever since MJ entertained us with his fabulous moves, throughout the world dancers have tried to jump higher, stretch farther, and turn faster than ever before,” the scientists say.



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