how much g forces do f1 drivers experience

G-Forces in F1 vs Everyday Life: How Do They Compare?

Formula 1 racing is one of the most demanding sports for a reason. The reason is the gravitational force power, which drivers experience more than any athletes worldwide. They struggle every time they race at the wheel of a car. But how do these g-forces compare to what we experience in our everyday lives? Taking it ahead, it’s more palpable than you can imagine because loads in Formula 1 are 20 times greater! Let’s compare g-forces in F1 vs everyday life and how they affect our bodies.

G-forces That You’ve Been Experiencing In Everyday Life

Put plainly, gravity load causes a perception of weight, where 1G equals 9.8 meters per second. You experience it when being under acceleration or deceleration in a given direction.  

 In everyday life, you do not have a problem with it because of getting used to discomfort, whereas high speed has changed the situation. 

For example, you feel comfortable downing in the elevator, you experience 0.5G, but it may be inconvenient for you when lifting because you feel forced for 1G.

However, you will be more embarrassed flying in the plane, particularly boarding. Why is that? Well, you experience more than 2G loads on your body.

You also can feel gravity pressure in different racing cars and reach 4G when you take a sharp corner at 160km/h. 

Riding a roller coaster is another way to experience g-forces in life. 

Formula Rossa roller coaster in Abu Dhabi has the most speed, accelerating from 0 to 240km/h in 4.9 seconds. Such an experience can give you a thrilling 4.8G in your stomach as you climb heart-racing heights of 52m!

However, there is no need to pack the baggage to Abu Dhabi for brand new feelings, as the impact of Gs feels enough even on the Flip Flap Railway

Therefore, the average person can withstand about 4 and a maximum of 6 g-forces for a short period. However, F1 drivers can experience g-forces of up to 60 g-forces during a race.

g-forces in F1 vs everyday life
Photo by Gabriel Valdez on Unsplash

How Does the 5G feel like?

Well, let’s take your average weight and multiply it 5 times. Your hands, head, and other body parts will be weighed five times harder. The weighted impact is distributed over the entire body mass. 

You feel the pressure in the head, chest, hands, and legs, but your body resists. Your muscles tune-up, but if they are weak, this tension is not enough to feel comfortable. Hence, if you do not possess a fully developed vestibular system, then a ride like this would be something you will never forget, causing dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. 

Often, people with unprepared physical shape can feel tunnel vision or blackout due to the impact of 5G and even loss of consciousness, which is the so-called G-LOC. 

It seems a few workouts are needed before the roller coaster ride, agreed? However, drivers in Formula 1 experience forces ten times higher than 5G!

f1 vs rally which is harder
Image by Maurygraf from Pixabay

G-forces in Formula 1

So what about Formula 1 and its terrifying gravity pressures that often make drivers feel uncomfortable?

Here, the loads are resistance force amounts gained at high speed. So, drivers struggle with vertical and lateral g-forces during high acceleration, hard braking, and high-speed crashes. Yes, everything circles around speeds. But, as all this sport is about fast, drivers feel the constant pressure.

Thus, they experience a permanent average of 6G, which may change depending on the racing circuit, from fast passing Imola to slow Monaco, +/ 1G

Ok, so what exactly does this 6G come from?

Typically, F1 drivers experience 5G while braking2G while accelerating0,6 – 1G due to bouncing, and 6G while cornering

However, the rule is clear – the more difference between minimal and maximal speeds, the more quantity force drivers feel.

Therefore, circuits with cutting braking zones, such as Turkish Istanbul Park, Belgian Spa-Francorchamps, and Japanese Suzuka, are considered the most dangerous. So, at some tracks, racers can feel the impact even of 9Gs.

You may say, ok, but 9G is not so much, as these are the same loads that fighter jet pilots go through, right? Not so simple. The probability of crashes in Formula 1 is too high.

Yes, the highest g-forces in Formula 1 in the crashes, when the driver may experience 30-60G or more at the time of impact. It means to feel gravity 60 times weightier on the body, but still, it is not the limit.

how much g-forces do f1 drivers experience
Max Verstappen crashing in Qualifying (27869053691)” by 35mmMan is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Highest G-Forces In Formula 1 Recently

So, back to the current time and the gravity pressure that drivers often get under. So, three huge crashes with high g-forces over the last five years. 

During the 2020 Bahrain Grand Prix, Romain Grosjean got a 67G impact when he clipped the wing of Daniil Kvyat’s AlphaTauri and slammed into a barrier at close to 200km/h! Romain Grosjean escaped with only second-degree burns to his hands.

In 2021, at the British Grand Prix, Max Verstappen collided with Lewis Hamilton. When he struck the barrier sideways, the impact was 51G. After slight disorientation, Verstappen left the medical center without injuries.

In 2022, Mick Schumacher had an accident with a 33G at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix when he crashed into a concrete wall at over 258km/h! The medical examination showed no injuries.

F1 G-force And An Average Person

Sure, someone with well vestibular and overall physical preparation can survive a maximum force of 10G, while 6G is the maximum that the average person can withstand.

However, there is one crucial thing in both cases: the force amount must be fleeting, no more than a few seconds. 

As for the professional Formula 1 drivers, they will be good after 9G impact and even after experiencing 6G for two hours of racing, but why?

f1 vs rally comparison
Image by Sandor Foszto from Pixabay

What Helps Drivers to Withstand Loads in Formula 1?

The secret hides in three crucial things: racing equipment, specific preparation, and continuous training. 

Racing Equipment

Everything in the F1 driver’s equipment aims to protect the racer at high speeds. With fixing them in place, most devices make them unmoved, supporting crucial points such as the neck and head.

Thus, the HANS device protects the weakest part of the body against the gravity loads – the neck. So, this collar solves the problem of strengthening and supporting the body part at high acceleration and deceleration. 


Another key lies in their preparation. You wonder, but most F1 drivers’ workouts aimed to train athletes’ endurance against gravity pressure. They train muscles to make them strong, not big.

Sergio Perez and Max Verstappen pull and hold weights on the neck, hands, and spine, similar to resisting g-forces at the racing track. 

Put it plainly, the stronger legs you have, the higher you will jump, resisting gravity. 

So, no wonder that with their necks, Pierre Gasly may lift a dumbbell weighing tens of kilograms, while Fernando Alonso can chop walnuts. 


In everyday life, you don’t need to experience high loads if you aren’t the plane’s pilot. 

However, the drivers in Formula 1 must, because it is their profession, which is a part of their lives. Regarding the schedule, g-loads happen in their life almost every week. 

It is a habit that they get used to. Simply, it is like your case when you feel good about using the elevator.

formula 1 vs wrc what is harder
Image by Tomáš Kašpar from Pixabay


You feel the impact of g-forces every day. It happens when you lift in an elevator, drive fast in a car, or fly in a plane; even your bus’s hard braking to stop is about you feeling the gravity pressure.

So, you feel well with these small loads, but Formula 1 is about another level of g-forces. And if an average person with good physical shape can resist 6G as a maximum, the drivers from Formula 1 will be good after struggling 9G.

They got used to it. Their profession forces them to prepare with loads.

But, what they don’t get used to – the g-force during the crash, as it is the main problem in the sport. High speed with rough braking is the pattern that made loads in Formula 1 so dangerous. The more difference between these speeds – the more serious the gravity impact.

And sometimes, these impacts may reach 30, 50, and nearly 70G! However, professional drivers are ready to endure even these loads.

Specific equipment helps drivers to avoid harmful consequences of incidents on the track.

Moreover, outside the circuit, each driver constantly trains the neck, spine, legs, and hand muscles because strength in sinew is the key to resisting the g-loads.

What is more? Next time when someone argues that F1 drivers physically are the same people that you and I, tell about the power of forces gravity in Formula 1.