The ‘zoom challenge’ is the latest viral trend that poses serious risks

The concept behind the Zoom Challenge is pretty simple: People film themselves listening to Lil Yachty’s song “Mickey,” which has the lyrics “Trappin’ out the back streets, runnin’ through the packs like a track meet–ZOOM!”

First people were eating Tide Pods, then they were giving themselves deodorant burns, and next they were snorting condoms.

The newest one to add to the list: the 'Zoom Challenge.'

Then, at the word “zoom,” whoever was enjoying the song gets yanked out of the frame by their legs. In some situations, people are hitting their heads in the process-you can even hear when their skull hits whatever hard surface they're sitting on.

“Sounded like it hurt,” one person wrote after viewing a Zoom Challenge video. “OMG it most definitely did!” was the reply.

If this seems like a really bad idea to you, you’d be right. “This is a parent’s nightmare, especially when smaller kids and toddlers participate,” says women’s health expert Jennifer Wider, M.D.

Unfortunately with trends like this, people who participate in them usually aren’t aware of the risk of injury-and it exists.

“Smaller bodies, and even unprepared larger ones can be grabbed and moved too quickly, increasing the risk of neck injuries, whiplash, and concussion,” Wider says.

And that movement on the word "zoom" is pretty fast and strong-catching most people by surprise even when they know it's coming, “As a result, the [person's] neck is extended and the head can hit a hard surface,” Wider says.

Ultimately, a person’s risk of concussion depends on several factors like how strong the movement is, and the type of surface that the head comes in contact with. “But the risk is definitely there,” Wider says.

The bottom line: If you're tempted to try Zoom Challenge...don't. Seriously.


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