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I was watching "fight science" on google video (which is quite interesting in its own right) by national geographic. It featured scientific demonstrations of head trauma (and a lot of other things).
Of interest here were the figures on blows to the head. The most severe...."beyond fatal" recorded on crash dummies were by guys who could break 20+ cement blocks. Or hitting the dummy with a sledge hammer.
The most severe of these, approximately 2500 pounds, was equal to hitting a tree at 20 miles per hour. (I am sure that for most here that would be quite slow)
It made me realize how important it is to wear a helmet. And at the same time showed why there are still fatalities even with helmets