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# The Physics of Tumbling

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by

## Christine Kim

on 9 December 2013

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#### Transcript of The Physics of Tumbling

Important Terms
Back Handsprings
1.
The

Physics
of

Tumbling

Back Tucks
1. Newton's first law requires the tumbler to need acceleration (amount depending on tumbler's mass) to lift him/her high enough off the ground. This energy is created when he/she contracts his/her muscles (like a spring), creating potential energy. The tumbler converts this energy to kinetic energy by expanding his/her muscles, pushing off the floor, and swinging his/her arms back.
Cartwheel- a circular sideways handspring with the arms and legs extended

Back handspring- when one starts from a standing position and wheels the body backward, landing first on the hands and then on the feet

Back tuck- a flip in which a person leaps into the air and rotates one or more times
Tumbling Terms
For all these three tumbling movements, Newton's second and third law is shown.
Newton's second law states that acceleration is force/mass.
This is also another way to say that force is mass x acceleration.
In tumbling, the mass of the tumbler times the acceleration of their run into the skill equals the amount of force the person puts into the floor which will then turn into the amount of force the floor gives back to them (Newton's third law).
So, the faster the tumbler runs, the higher the skill will be, and he/she will have more time in the air.
This is important in real life situations so tumblers are able to know about how much acceleration/force they need to complete a skill. Also, when they do complex skills (like involving twists), they will need as much time as possible in the air so it may be successful.
Newton's Laws of Motion
Newton's Second Law
Newton's Third Law
Newton's third law states that "for every action force, there is a reaction force equal in strength and opposite in direction."
In tumbling, the tumbler's body is exerting a force into the spring floor, and the floor is putting back the same amount of force but opposite in direction (up) that was applied to it.
This is basically how a trampoline works.
This law is important for skills to be successfully (and more easily) completed.
Without this law, the skill would have no height added to it (the force exerted into the floor would stay there and would not help the tumbler up into the air).
Cartwheels
The cartwheel begins with the tumbler leaning forward, starting to fall.
1. Inertia brings the tumbler forward until their hands touch the ground.
Explanations of Scientific Terms

Inertia: a property of matter by which it continues in its existing state of rest or uniform motion in a straight line, unless that state is changed by an external force
Momentum: the quantity of motion of a moving body, measured as a product of its mass and velocity
Angular momentum: the quantity of rotation of a body, which is the product of its moment of inertia and its angular velocity
***This is referring to a tumbler preforming skills on a spring floor.***
2.
2. Through momentum and angular momentum, the tumbler's feet are carried over their head until they hit the ground.
In real life, it is necessary for the tumbler to have enough force to go against gravity and push their feet off the ground.
1.
1. Standing straight up, the tumbler has potential energy.
2.
2. The tumbler swings his/her arms, pushing off the ground. The potential energy is now kinetic.
3.
3. Force brings the tumbler backwards, and gravity pushes him/her back to the ground.
4.
4. Upside down, the tumbler uses momentum to push with his/her hands upwards to carry through.
Once again, it is necessary for the tumbler to have enough force to go against gravity and push their feet off the ground.
Explanations of Scientific Terms

Potential energy: stored energy with the ability to change into kinetic energy
Kinetic energy: energy in motion
Force: strength or energy as an attribute of physical action or movement
Gravity: the force that attracts a body toward the center of the earth, or toward any other physical body having mass
Momentum: the quantity of motion of a moving body, measured as a product of its mass and velocity
1.
4.
2.
3.
Explanations of Scientific Terms

Newton's first law: An object at rest will stay at rest and an object in motion will stay in motion with the same velocity unless acted on by an unbalanced force
Acceleration: increase in the rate or speed of something
Energy: the strength and vitality required for sustained physical or mental activity
Potential energy: stored energy with ability to change into kinetic energy
Kinetic energy: energy in motion
Angular velocity: the rate of change of angular position of a rotating body
2. When the tumbler swings his/her arms behind the back to up almost next to the ears, a circular path of motion (not a vertical path) is created.

3. Angular velocity is the greatest when the tumbler's legs and shoulders are closest to the body. This allows him/her to successfully complete a full rotation and land safely on his/her feet.
4. Referring to Newton's first law again, the tumbler lands with his/her knees bent. to absorb the energy. This is the external force which stops an object in motion from remaining in motion.
Bibliography
"Diving into Differentiation: Dividing, Fractions and Cartwheels..." Diving into Differentiation: Dividing, Fractions and Cartwheels... N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.
"Erie Gymnastics Center - Welcome!" Erie Gymnastics Center - Welcome! N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.
"Expert's Guide To Tumbling For Cheerleading: Back Handspring." Cheerleading Blog. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.
"Final Paper - The Physics of Cheerleading." Final Paper - The Physics of Cheerleading. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Nov. 2013.
"Gymnastics." Math2033 RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.
"Latest Articles." Cheerleading Blog. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.
"Mobility Seminar on June 8th – Mark Your Calendars!" CrossFit City of Angels. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.
"My Standing Back Handspring." YouTube. YouTube, 14 Feb. 2008. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.
"Newton's 3 Laws of Motion." Newton's 3 Laws of Motion. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Nov. 2013.
Physical Science. [Nashua, N.H.]: CPO Science, 2007. 452. Print.
"Physics of Gymnastics." - Croom Physics Wiki. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.
"Physics of Tumbling." Physics of Tumbling. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Nov. 2013.
"Round Off Back Handspring Full Twisting Layout." YouTube. YouTube, 01 Dec. 2012. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.
"Simple Thoughts: The Cartwheel." Simple Thoughts: The Cartwheel. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.
"The Physics of Gymnastics." Prezi.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Nov. 2013.

The End!!!

Test Questions
1.) 1.) What force brings the tumbler forward in the beginning of a cartwheel?
a. Inertia
b. Momentum
c. Kinetic energy
d. Newton’s second law

2.) Fill in the blanks below referring to back handsprings.

When the tumbler swings his/her arms and pushes off the ground, the ________ energy is now __________ energy.

3.) In back tucks, why does the tumbler land with his/her knees bent? What does this do?

_______________________________________________________________________________

1.) What force brings the tumbler forward in the beginning of a cartwheel?
a.
Inertia
b. Momentum
c. Kinetic energy
d. Newton’s second law

2.) Fill in the blanks below referring to back handsprings.

When the tumbler swings his/her arms and pushes off the ground, the _
potential_
______ energy is now __
kinetic_
_______ energy.

3.) In back tucks, why does the tumbler land with his/her knees bent? What does this do?

______________________________________________________

This is referring to Newton’s first law. The tumbler does this to absorb the energy from the tumbling stunt. This stops an object in motion from remaining in motion (the bending of the knees is the external force).

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