Can You Swim in Shade Balls?

  • Published on Jun 13, 2019
  • I bought 10,000 shade balls and tried to swim in them. They appear to act like a non-Newtonian fluid: rigid under high shear stress, but they flow like a liquid under low shear.
    Get a signed shade ball by supporting Veritasium:
    Receiving a shade ball:
    1. Support Veritasium on any Patreon tier and enter your address
    2. In about a month I will send out signed shade balls
    3. I will cover all shipping costs but if things get really crazy I will prioritize existing Patreon supporters and higher tiers
    My sense was that swimming in shade balls would be difficult but still doable. This was roughly true for the single layer of shade balls. The shade balls slide past each other so they act like a liquid, albeit a viscous one owing to their significant inertia. It's much more intense exercise and it's also annoying to be bombarded with shade balls on all sides of your body, particularly your head. With multi-layer shade balls (as exists on much of LA reservoir) things get significantly more difficult. The balls bunch together and when you try to move through them quickly, they become more rigid, providing significant resistance to motion. This has the benefit that you can lie on them and as long as they stay trapped under you, you can float on them. But a little bit of motion causes them to move around and you sink through quickly.
    Huge thanks to:
    Jordan Schnabel and Cristian Carretero for filming and swimming and providing lifeguard services.
    Raquel Nuno for filming and putting up with me.
    Special thanks to Patreon supporters:
    Donal Botkin, Michael Krugman, Ron Neal, Stan Presolski, Terrance Shepherd, Penward Rhyme and everyone who provided feedback on an early draft of this video.
    Music from "Dubstep Mammoth 2" "Finally Here (Instrumental)" "The Last Arrival" "Sundown Love (Instrumental)"

Comments • 22 303

  • GamingBros ___
    GamingBros ___ Hour ago


  • MaskedPanda
    MaskedPanda 10 hours ago +1

    “But its kinda like quick sand!”

  • The Excellent Laborer
    The Excellent Laborer 11 hours ago


  • Emma Bowe
    Emma Bowe 11 hours ago +1

    As a swimmer its already hard enough to swim with just water, but with this it looks so painful.

  • 1,000 Subscribers With No Videos?

    Does anyone else think they look like that scene from Incredibles?

  • Grant Keizer
    Grant Keizer 14 hours ago +1

    at 3:50 you can see the drone

  • Grant Keizer
    Grant Keizer 14 hours ago


  • Grant Keizer
    Grant Keizer 14 hours ago

    ya time to release the balls

  • Hannah G
    Hannah G 17 hours ago

    my anxiety levels shot up real quick 😭

  • Myrihiff Duty
    Myrihiff Duty 19 hours ago

    Veritasium 👍💯
    Who want veritasium goes to 🌙🌚
    Like 👇👇👇👇👇👇👇👇

  • Carl Hammill
    Carl Hammill Day ago

    10,000 * .30 = $3,000 usd for him to do this.

  • Kaimalie
    Kaimalie Day ago

    I think I just witnessed suicide in the intro lol

  • Alec’s Channel!

    sounds a bit wrong don’t ya think swimming in a pool of BLACK BALLS

  • Avafrank6 Basketball4life

    3:25 yeah he jumped in but then theres the camera man😂

  • yuriannna
    yuriannna Day ago

    You can’t imagine how much anxiety this video is giving me. Also i can’t swim

  • leaselle
    leaselle Day ago

    This gives me so much anxiety

  • mkayla45
    mkayla45 Day ago

    That's a great pool cover tho

  • AlyssaTheAlphaXO
    AlyssaTheAlphaXO 2 days ago

    “A lot of balls in the face!” Veritasium 2019

  • angel marte
    angel marte 2 days ago

    it seems that the US is doomed if left to the sheer idiocy that plagues its media.

  • Chanderdat Laltoo
    Chanderdat Laltoo 2 days ago

    hi. how can i get these shade balls...Please contact me since it is for a different purpose

  • Overwhelming Surplus Of Diggity

    this gives me claustrophobia.

  • •GachaWøffles•
    •GachaWøffles• 2 days ago +11

    “But it’s kinda like quicksand,”
    “O-oh, no.”

  • Theo Kh
    Theo Kh 3 days ago

    0:10 do you mean incredi ball?

  • Eclipse :p
    Eclipse :p 3 days ago

    How are they gonna get them *out* ....

  • Swiftalz -_-
    Swiftalz -_- 3 days ago

    Butterfly is challenging in itself to do why would anyone ever do that.

  • Hothkinstroy
    Hothkinstroy 3 days ago +2

    3:17 did this guy just jump in air?

  • Riley Sheldon
    Riley Sheldon 3 days ago

    3:53 they using a drone look at the shadow to the right

  • breadstick 'n'dip
    breadstick 'n'dip 3 days ago

    You cant swin in the reservoir because its drinking water. But you can drive a boat that uses oil

  • Kundan
    Kundan 3 days ago

    watching the pool fill up with these black balls is so satisfying and disgusting.

  • Juan Pablo Valencia
    Juan Pablo Valencia 3 days ago

    5:45 that's gotta hurt

  • Gleam シ
    Gleam シ 4 days ago


  • Rockstarfoxy Production's

    How will he get them all out

  • sauce slos
    sauce slos 5 days ago +1

    This gave me so much anxiety

  • Mario C90
    Mario C90 5 days ago +2

    7:14 you can see his instant regret face as he goes under

  • Taylor Churchill
    Taylor Churchill 5 days ago

    I would love to do this.

  • Hector Vitti
    Hector Vitti 5 days ago

    1920: *we will have fliyng cars int the future*
    2019: -* im about to swim in shy balls-*

  • Cup of Coco
    Cup of Coco 5 days ago +5

    When they did a drone shot of them pouring the balls in it reminded me of boba 😂

  • Carl Ruby Højland Nielsen

    Tbh i had no idea what a shade ball was i just clicked cause it looked like those balls from The Imcredibles

  • Andrew Chadwick
    Andrew Chadwick 6 days ago

    8:02 me trying to swim

  • iays
    iays 6 days ago

    cant you swim under it and come up for air wvery 10 seconds or so

  • MrInfiniteWolf ツ
    MrInfiniteWolf ツ 6 days ago

    Below water of the balls is sick!

  • Nicholicious
    Nicholicious 6 days ago +1

    The school thot at a pool party:

  • Angelica Poh
    Angelica Poh 6 days ago

    It looks like metal atoms

  • Mr Gaming 2007
    Mr Gaming 2007 6 days ago

    Is it just me or does this remind you of that scene from the incredibles where all the balls blasted him and started sticking to him

  • TheMostEpicPairOfSocks

    I actually held my breath right before he jumped in without realizing.

  • Talant Ziadinov
    Talant Ziadinov 6 days ago

    if you wanna swim trough you have to take deep breaths and dive under it and come up so u can take a break, with the help of the balls staying on the sruface shouldnt be so exhausting ;)

  • Davis Harry
    Davis Harry 6 days ago


  • MsNooneinparticular
    MsNooneinparticular 7 days ago +4

    We're in that weird part of USclip again, kids.

  • Leticia Pereira
    Leticia Pereira 7 days ago +1

    my god my anxiety is KILLING ME

  • Captain Morgan IV
    Captain Morgan IV 7 days ago

    But it's kinda like quicksa-*csapcshdhakshdhdjd*

  • gloten gloat
    gloten gloat 7 days ago

    You're a dumbass

  • JL - 08BN - Thomas Street MS (1654)

    That's a lot of tapioca

  • sarah docinho
    sarah docinho 7 days ago

    Meu sonho

  • A Unfamiliar Account.
    A Unfamiliar Account. 7 days ago +1


  • Insert Minecraft Meme Here

    "I am swimming... but I'm getting a lot of *balls* in my face."

  • Trump's Neck Vagina
    Trump's Neck Vagina 7 days ago

    You got a lot of balls😲

  • Leon Chung
    Leon Chung 7 days ago

    Looks like caviar from drone view

  • Hafextas
    Hafextas 7 days ago +1

    this reminds me of The Incredibles part when bob is thrown at with this black sticky balls

  • Brittany Walls
    Brittany Walls 8 days ago

    DO NOT TRY AT HOME!!!!!!!

  • Sordid Bacon
    Sordid Bacon 8 days ago

    He had at least 3 bags left