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Sledding and Short People




As a short person, sledding has always been difficult for me. Going on a sled by myself, I could never go as fast as people with greater mass because I couldn't get the same momentum. But that wasn't the worst thing. The worst was going on a sled with someone else bigger than me. I always had to sit in the front of the sled. And that means getting hit in the face with chunks of ice and snow as we go barreling down a hill at speeds I wasn't used to. As unfortunate as it was, it had to be done because physics was working against me. When you sled down a hill, the center of mass of the sled-person system changes because of the decline of the surface. When you are sledding with another person on the same sled, if the person with more mass sits in the front, the center of mass shifts farther forward. This is a problem because then, the sled could easily flip over forward. So I, as a small person, will continue to sit in the front of the sled, so as to keep the sled balanced, and prevent a horrible sledding disaster. 





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