• Question: im practising my football and i cant kick it far like 50 metres can science help me and how ????

    Asked by taku11 to Mike, Suze, Will on 22 Jun 2011.
    • Photo: Suze Kundu

      Suze Kundu answered on 22 Jun 2011:

      Hey Taku!

      Science might be able to help you learn more about how the ball travels through mechanics, and looking at what we call the flight of a projectile, or the forces acting on an object that is travelling like a ball being kicked. You’ve got different forces acting on the ball, like the initial power, the friction of the air on the ball (the drag), the mass of the ball, and of course our favourite gravity, and you also need to think about the angle that you are kicking the ball, and whether you are kicking it totally centrally, or whether your placement of your kick is making the ball curve or swivel in the air.

      This is something that you could do with a computer modelling program, where you can change your speed / angle / etc, put the numbers into a spreadsheet, which will be able to do the maths for you, and work out how far it would go.

      Speak to your physics or maths teachers about learning more about the flights of projectiles, as they should be able to show you this on a spreadsheet, so that you can work out what your ideal kicking force / angle / position of kick should be, and then you can get out there and give it a go with your friends. A group challenge, if you like!