Carrying a Suit of Armor – What Knights Ate to Do It

According to researchers, knights wore armor that weighed up to 50 kilograms. Armor fell out of use beginning with the invention of gunpowder in the 1600s , but during its use in up to the 1500s, researchers wondered how men could sustain wearing these suits and doing battle with them.

Recent university studies in the United Kingdom were conducted to find out how it was possible for any human being to move efficiently while wearing armor. Did it have a lot to do with what they ate?

Not exactly, as men were capable of doing cartwheels while wearing full mail suits during one test. They could not sustain a good deal of this type of activity while wearing the weighty outfits, but they were much more nimble while wearing them than was previously assumed.

Knights were noblemen. As such, they ate differently from the lower classes. The nights ate fish, fresh meat, vegetables, fruit, and bread. Their meals were seasoned with spices like pepper, nutmeg, ginger and cardamom. Nothing really stands out as giving them superhuman strength but they did ingest plenty of calories, protein, and carbohydrates.

Could it be they were just more able-bodied when wearing the suit as its weight was distributed all around the body? During the studies in the UK, the test subjects expended much more energy, had higher heart rates and different stride lengths after wearing the suits for a prolonged period. Clearly, the knights of yore would have used up an awful lot of energy as well during longer battles but they may have had that energy from their balanced diets.

If they had enough food to eat they would have been able to rely on their calories converting to energy. This would have allowed them to carry the weight longer.