Five Absolutely Amazing Human Endurance Feats

Published August 5, 2013
Updated February 9, 2018

Amazing Human Endurance Feats: Johanna Quaas’ Ageless Athleticism

Human Endurance Feats Johanna Quas

Source: Super Illu

At 86 years old, Johanna Quaas is the oldest recorded gymnast in the world. She began her training at an early age in Germany and won her first competition in 1934. A handful of decades later, the octogenarian gymnast still practices the same routines she performed in her youth and, even more remarkably, is still winning trophies for it. After becoming a viral internet sensation in 2012, her carpe diem approach to life has inspired others across the world to challenge many of the norms associated with human strength and endurance.

Amazing Human Endurance Feats: Thor Heyerdahl’s 5,000 Mile Sail

While not a Norse god in the traditional sense, Thor Heyerdahl is still one of the most awe-inspiring humans in history. An attempt to prove that the Polynesians could have originated in South America, in 1947 the Norwegian adventurer sailed 5,000 miles from South America to the Tuamoto Islands in a handmade balsa-wood raft.

After a treacherous 101 days of battling sharks, weathering storms and surviving dehydration, Thor and his team completed the expedition. In 2011, Heyerdahl’s archives were added to UNESCO’s “Memory of the World” register, allowing Heyerdahl’s legacy to live on forever.

Human Endurance Feats Thor Raft

Source: Kon Tiki

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Savannah Cox
Savannah Cox holds a Master's in International Affairs from The New School as well as a PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, and now serves as an Assistant Professor at the University of Sheffield. Her work as a writer has also appeared on DNAinfo.