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Mechanics of Sport

Nature volume 140, pages 567568 (02 October 1937) | Download Citation



IN games with a ball in their most primitive stages, the ball may be simply a convenient lump to be thrown or hit ; but effects of spin soon play their part. It is well known that Prof. P. E. Tait measured the starting speed of a golf ball and thought he had proved mathematically that its range could not be more than about two-thirds of the distance that his son proceeded to drive it. The cause lay in the upward force due to the under-spin, and the explanation of such an effect had been given by the late Lord Rayleigh, as well as in general terms by Sir Isaac Newton. Similar effects may be seen in a slice at golf, a swerve in cricket or baseball, or an American service at lawn-tennis.

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