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By the Numbers is a recurring challenge involving delicate balance in Survivor.


The members of each tribe line up on a very narrow balance beam. One tribe member at a time, they must move across the beam and around the other tribe members. The person crossing can only touch one member at a time. If two people touch at once or a member falls into the water, they must start all over. Once a member reaches the platform, the next person may proceed. The tribe who gets all their members across first wins.


The challenge was first used in Survivor: Vanuatu, for reward. The Yasur tribe was easily able to defeat the Lopevi tribe and win the challenge, earning themselves blankets and pillows.

In Survivor: Fiji, Moto and Ravu competed in this challenge for reward. Despite originally trailing, Moto developed a strategy which involved having the member kneel down, allowing them to cross with relative ease. This would allow Moto to pull off a victory and earn fish, rice, spices, and a king-sized bed with sheets, pillows, and blankets. This is the only season where the challenge was administered to tribes with both male and female members.

The next time the challenge was used was in Survivor: One World for immunity. While the Manono tribe made decent progress, the Salani tribe had communication problems early on, which were aggravated by Kat Edorsson unnecessarily jumping into the water. By the time Monica Culpepper was able to come up with a plan to get the women across, the Manono tribe won immunity.


Episode Challenge Type Winner
"Burly Girls, Bowheads, Young Studs, and the Old Bunch"
Tribal Reward S9 ami t.pngS9 dolly t.pngS9 eliza t.png
S9 julie t.pngS9 leann t.pngS9 lisa t.png
S9 mia t.pngS9 scout t.pngS9 twila t.png
"Let's Just Call Jeff on the Jeff Phone"
Tribal Reward S14 alex t.pngS14 boo t.pngS14 cassandra t.png
S14 dreamz t.pngS14 edgardo t.pngS14 gary t.png
S14 liliana t.pngS14 lisi t.pngS14 stacy t.png
One World
"Total Dysfunction"
Tribal Immunity S24 bill t.pngS24 colton t.pngS24 jay t.png
S24 jonas t.pngS24 leif t.pngS24 matt t.png
S24 michael t.pngS24 tarzan t.pngS24 troyzan t.png



  • This challenge has been used in two seasons with the Battle of the Sexes format.
  • Every tribe to win this challenge shares several similarities:
    • Every tribe had nine members at the time.
    • Every tribe had to sit out people to accommodate the other tribe, one of whom was the oldest contestant of the season.
    • Every tribe had not lost a challenge up to that point.


Recurring Challenges
A Bit Dinghy · A Bit Tipsy · A Crate Idea · A Leg Up · A Numbers Game · Air Raid · Angry Chair · Around the Bend · Back in Slack · Balancing Point · Ballin' A Jack · Barrel Bridge · Barrel of Monkeys · Basket Brawl · Better Homes and Island Living · Beyond the Wheel · Blind Leading the Blind · Blue Lagoon Bustle · Blue Plate Special · Boats, Brains & Brawn · Bone to Pick · Boulder Smash · Bow Diddley · Box Your Mind · Braille Maze · Broken China · Buggin' Out · Build It Up, Break It Down · Butch Cassidy · By Any Means Necessary · By the Numbers · Can't Buoy Me Love · Cannonball Run · Caught in the Web · Cell Block Sea · Challenge Pitch · Chief's Choice · Chimney Sweep · Chinese Zodiac Symbols · Choose Your Weapon · Coconut Juice · Crate Escape · Crocodile Rock · Crosswalk · Cube Crisis · Dear Liza · Dive Masters · Domino Effect · Draggin' the Dragon · Dragging the River · Drop A Log · Dulcimer Stomp · End of the Line · Fallen Comrades · Fast Fire · Faulty Towers · Fauxconut Bowling · Fire and Water · Fire Fighter · Float Your Boat · Floating Puzzle · Game of Bridge · Gatecrasher · Get a Grip · Get Barreled · Get Hooked · Get Your Goat · Gimme Three Steps · Great Escape Run · Hands on a Hard Idol · Hear About It Ladder · Hot Pursuit · House of Cards · House of the Holey · Idol Hands · Jail Break · Jump Shot · Jungle Love · Jungle Relay · Kamikaze · Keel Hauling · Keep It Up · Keep on Your Toes · Kenny Log-Ins · Kicking and Screaming · Kitty Litter · Know Your Loved One · Ladder Tree Golf · Last Gasp · Letter Hunt · Lock, Load and Light · Lock Step · Log Jam · Losing Face · Mask Match · Matchmaker · Matt Finish · Memory · Mud Pack · Mud Slide · Muddy Waters · New School · New Tribe Member · Nut Bucket · O-Black Water · Odd Shaped Bottoms · Operation Balance Build · Out on a Limb · Over-Extended · Paddle Battle · Paddle Out · Perch · Pilfering Pirates · Piranha Feast · Pole Dancing · Pot Head · Push Me, Pull You · Puzzle Dig · Pyramid Scheme · Q and A · Quest for Fire · Race to Shore · Ram-Ball On · Rescue Mission · Rice Race · Rise and Shrine · Rock Bottom · Rock n' Roll · Rod Screw-It · Roll With It · Roller Ball · Running Down a Dream · · Sacrificial Lamb · Schmergen Brawl · Sea Crates · Sea Legs · Sea Salvage · Shipwrecked · Shoot 'n' Shuffle · Shooting Gallery · Shoulder the Load · Simmotion · Slip, Slide & Score · Slither Me Timbers · Smash and Grab · Snag, Drag and Bag · Snake in the Grass · Snake Island Relay · SOS Signal · Spear-it Hunt · Spit It Out · Splash Back · Sprung A Leak · Squared Off · Squatty Probst · Stacked Up · Stairway to Heaven · Stairway to the Stars · Star Man · Station By Station · Step on Up · Stomp-ede · Strung Out · Sumo at Sea · Survivor Auction · Survivor History · Survivor Pentathlon · Survivor Quiz Show · Swahili Scramble · Swing Break · Temple Transfer · The Ball Drop · The Cruel Sea · The Game is Afoot · The Gauntlet · The Home Stretch · The Maze · The Obstacle Course · This Much · Thrash, Splash & Bash · TLP O-Course · Tomb Raider · Troubled Water · Uncomfortably Numb · United We Stand · Vampire Bats · Vertically Challenged · Vertigo · Wall to Wall · Well Stacked · What-er Drag · When It Rains, It Pours · Wicker Flicker · Will It Go Round · Witch Hunt · Wrist Assured · Yank Your Hank · You Shook Me