Physics of...Soccer

Introduction <<

Passing the Ball

"Bend it Like Beckham"






Welcome to the Physics of...Soccer website. At this site, we will cover five different areas within the game of soccer that involve various aspects of physics. From the soccer end of the spectrum, we will be discussing throw-ins, passing, bending a shot, and other things in between. From the physics side, Newton's Laws, coefficient of friction, the Magnus Effect, Bernoulli’s Principle, force vectors, and various other concepts will be related to the game.

Brief History of the Game

Soccer, known globally as association football, football, or futbol, is by far the world's most popular sport. Various similar games were played in ancient times, but soccer as we know it today was first started in 1863 with the founding of The Football Association in England. Before this time, amateur clubs would agree upon rules before playing a game. With the formation of The Football Association, a standardized set of rules was established, and the sport soon became very popular. Amateur clubs were replaced by professional teams, and soccer became big business, giving us the game we have today.

Soccer has had a multitude of extraordinary athletes to play throughout its history. Some of the most highly regarded soccer legends throughout history include Pelé, Diego Maradona, George Best, Franz Beckenbauer, Zinedine Zidane, and countless more. They come from all parts of the world, different walks of life, and play with unique styles, but they all share a common quality. They all have tremendous skill, athleticism, and passion for soccer.

But before we get into the physics of soccer...let's have some fun, shall we? Turning your speakers up is recommended!

(NOTE: The song used in the following video clip has been made free for download by the artist).

Next: Passing the Ball