‘Sports’ have likely been around as long as there have been people. Every society has its favorite pastimes, and today with ever-advancing technologies, there is the ability to design high-tech equipment and utilize a host of specialists to help athletes perform better. It is such an important part of society that there are now fields dedicated to the study of sports medicine and fitness. No matter what sport or type of recreation you enjoy, the principles of science are involved.

Take a look at how science helps in different sports from football, to swimming, to NASCAR™.
  • Source: Science 360. (2010). Science of speed: friction and heat. Retrieved from http://news.science360.gov/obj/video/7fdabae3-a9f2-4ed0-8059-16da6ad2ea72
  • Source: Science 360. (2010). Science of the summer Olympics. Retrieved from http://science360.gov/series/Science+Of+The+Summer+Olympics/84211b74-7ae1-4d9b-9024-5faa6300fc29
  • Source: National Science Foundation. (2013). Science of the winter Olympic games. Retrieved from http://www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/olympics/
  • Source: Science 360. (2010). Science of NFL football: Newton’s first law of motion. Retrieved from http://news.science360.gov/obj/video/70fadaa8-c3d4-4132-ba1f-c98be5caeb14/science-nfl-football-newtons-first-law-motion

You are encouraged to conduct additional research to learn more about a sport or other recreational activity that you enjoy.

During the unit address the following questions:

  1. Share some information about the science behind your sport or recreation of choice.
  2. How can you categorize the scientific information that you learned about your sport/recreation? For example, does it involve physics, chemistry, and/or biology?
  3. What technological advances have been made in your favorite activity during its history?
  4. Have there been any previously held beliefs or customs in your sport/recreation that have been dismissed by scientific research? If so, please explain.
  5. Now that you have done some research on the science involved in your favorite activity, do you think you can use that information to perform better? Why, or why not?

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