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Gliding for Gold

'Gliding for Gold' cover image

Gliding for Gold

The Physics of Winter Sports

As anyone from cold climates knows, living with lots of ice and snow can lead to a special appreciation of sports such as skiing, sledding, and skating. Prolific physics popularizer Mark Denny’s take on winter athletics lays out the physical principles that govern glaciated game play.

After discussing the physical properties of ice and snow and describing the physics behind sliding friction and aerodynamic drag, Denny applies these concepts to such sports as bobsledding, snowboarding, and curling. He explains why clap skates would only hinder hockey players, how a curling rock curls, the forces that control luge speed, and how steering differs from skiing to snowboarding. With characteristic accuracy and a touch of wit, Denny provides fans, competitors, and coaches with handy, applicable insights into the games they love. The separate section of technical notes offers an original and mathematically rigorous exploration of the key aspects of winter sports physics.

A physics-driven exploration of sports played on ice and snow that is truly fun and informative, Gliding for Gold is the perfect primer for understanding the science behind cold weather athletics.