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Wolff's Law

Constant wear, or repeated activity sure do leave their marks, and let me show you some proof!
by

Micah Blair

on 11 January 2013

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Transcript of Wolff's Law

Wolff's Law Practice Makes Perfect Wolff’s law hugely affects body size and symmetry. But what is Wolff’s Law? Well, Wolff’s Law is how after repetition of an action your body adapts to become better able to reproduce this action. Or, let’s say if a person were to knock their tibia on that loathsome coffee table eventually the osteoblasts and -clasts in their shin would change the shape of the bone to prevent future knockings. However, it doesn’t just affect bones and muscles memory, if one chooses to do crosswords every day, it would strengthen their brain, and their vocabulary. This is the “why” linking exercise and how it strengthens a person’s body.

To make this more personal, here are some of my own examples: the muscles in my right thigh and calf cause the width or the right leg to be four centimeters larger than in my left leg. This is because my right leg is my dominant leg and I do many things starting on that leg. One activity I find myself doing especially often is leaning on my right leg. With Wolff’s law the muscle becomes used to this and grows to support this weight and these activities. This can also explain the two centimeter height difference between the greater trochanter of the femur of my right leg and the ground and the greater trochanter of the femur of my left leg and the ground. The left leg doesn’t have any weight on it compressing it to the ground so the bone continues to grow, as Wolff’s law would suggest. Between the femur and the ankle there is a four centimeter difference in height that is caused by, as much of my asymmetry is, the dominance of my right leg. My right foot is one centimeter longer than my left foot because of dominance, I tend to put more weight on my right foot as I walk and has over the years elongated due to the stress. And now let’s talk about the asymmetry of my upper limbs, my right forearm is one centimeter longer than my left forearm and this too can be attributed to Wolff’s law. As I am right handed, I write with the right hand, and therefore the muscles are contracted much more often in the hand causing the bone to be lengthened. My left fourth distal phalange is three-tenths shorter than the one on my right hand because in sixth grade I broke it in an unfortunate game of kickball. All these things exemplify Wolff’s law.

In my experiment we will see that not just muscles, connective, and bone tissues are affected by Wolff’s Law, but also brain cells and the connection between them. The practicing of the piano will cause increased motor skill in my hands, better ambidexterity and multi-tasking skills. The listening and observation of my sister and YouTube tutorials will make it easier for my brain to recognize patterns and pick up and analyze sounds and the keys that correspond. The improvement in my ambidexterity and multi-tasking skills will be due to the strengthening of connections in my brain by frequent use and “exercise” so to speak. At least, that is what I expect. My hypothesis is that after practicing I will be able to be able to play what I want, by ear, by reading, and by mimicking what I see. In order to obtain an answer, I will practice the piano on my own, working through my sister’s old first level piano book, practicing with her, and watching YouTube tutorials. Introduction Methods In order to start this experiment you must first have certain supplies. A piano or keyboard, for example is of grave importance. You also will need a piano book to practice out of, and internet connection, as you will be seeing if how-to videos help increase understanding and help hone skill. First you should set aside between thirty (30) minutes to an hour, three days a week for practicing the piano, working through your book, and practicing with YouTube. Also, if you have a sibling or friend willing to practice with you and teach you a little, set up a time or two to practice with them. Once a week, one of those already set up practice times, ask a friend or family member to assess your playing prowess on a scale of one to five. Continue these practice sessions for four weeks and analyze your results, assessments and book progress. Data This chart is of my weekly assessments, it shows my progress and ability Dec 17th, 20 minutes, two pages Dec 19th, 5 minutes with sister, 15 minutes, 1 page Dec 20th, 20 minutes, learned Old Joe Clark, assessed at a three Dec 25th, 15 minutes, 2 pages (unfinished) Dec 27th, 30 minutes, completed 1 page of the previous 2 Dec 28th, 15 minutes, working on in the jungle (self taught), assessed at a 2.5 Dec 30th, YouTube how to video for Hello by Evanescence for fifteen minutes (unsuccessful) Dec 31st, 20 minutes, 1 page, 10 minutes with Rebeccah on We are Never Getting Back Together January 2nd, 15 minutes in the book, 10 minutes reviewing old songs, working on You are my sunshine Jan 3rd, Learned you are my sunshine, and assessed at 4.5 Jan 6th, 30 minutes, 2 pages, played around for 10 minutes Jan 8th, 20 minutes, 1 page, 20 minutes playing With Becc and practicing You don't know you're beautiful by 1Direction, 15 minutes reviewing old songs Jan 9th, 45 minutes with Beccah (20 on "...Beautiful" and 15 "....back together" and 10 on YouTube together), 35 minutes by myself playing around and teaching myself happy birthday, assessed at 3 This table lists the dates and exercises that I practiced, and also what level I was assessed at. Conclusion As I went through this experiment I collected data such as dates,
amount of time spent practicing (and specified by activity), and I was assessed weekly. This experiment was fun to do, but as it was only for a month, it did not yield results to level I had hoped. I had expected to be able to read music better than my previous (and standing) fourth grade recorder level. I was able to mimic my sister, but watching web how to videos ultimately just frustrated me, and I gave up on them. The Graph on my weekly assessments has too few data points to show a strong confirmation or negation of my hypothesis. However, with the given data and my self-assessment of this whole unit, there is enough progress for me to accept my hypothesis.
My hypothesis was proven true because with practice I was able
to store information about this task and over time my brain became more accustomed to the behavior, allowing messages to be sent more quickly. If I were to repeat this experiment I would make sure to do it over a longer period of time as to have more assessments. That way my graph would have more points, hopefully illustrating a strong correlation over time. I learned that I do not have enough patience or knowledge to be able to take a instrumental how-to from the internet and apply it to my own instrument. I also learned that practice really is key to getting these things down. It did surprise me that I was unable to gain much from the internet because my sister has always been able to watch and learn from the videos, but I could only learn from watching and interacting with her. A possible variable in the speed of my improvement, and especially in my difficulty in playing two-handed songs, may come be my not learning to crawl until after I walked, which could have affected my ambidexterity and motor function development. This project was a valuable learning experience as it taught me how to gather data, and form my own experiments. Artifacts Micah Blair
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