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STEM in Sports!

July 9, 2019

Basketball Geometry

 

Swish!  The lovely sound of a basketball slipping through the net in the hoop, so perfectly centered that the ball doesn't touch the back stop or the rim!

 

When this happens, a silent swish through the net is the only sound you hear.  And, the ball safely sinks through to score.  If the ball hits the rim of the hoop, the chance of it bouncing out increases.  But to sink the basketball through the hoop, swish or not, a player doesn't throw the ball at the hoop. Rather a player uses knowledge of the parabolic arc to throw the ball so that it arcs over and up high enough to enter the basket from above. A parabola is a curve, shaped like an arch. It is also called a parabolic arc.

 

Learn more about parabolic arcs and their role in basketball in today's STEM In Sports!

 

Click HERE to download this activity as a printable PDF.

 

 

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