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Snowboarding Slopestyle

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jrv12

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As I watched the Winter Olympics this February, I loved to watch the snowboarding slopestyle and couldn’t help but think of all the physics involved in getting the highest score.

When the snowboarders start at the top of the hill, they are full of potential energy. As they make their way down the hill, the potential energy turns into kinetic energy. To create the flips and turns they do in the air, the snowboarders use angular momentum by applying an initial twist in their movement and that helping them spin in the air. They exert a torque from their body onto their snowboard to have the flips in the air. Once in the air, the snowboarders can use their arms to increase or decrease their rotational inertia, which causes them to twist more or less. The low friction of the snowboard on the snow helps the rider to keep their speed while going down the mountain and performing the necessary tricks.gif.gif.ce8d5badb230d82d7ff97c0f55b55c93.gif

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