Physics of overarm throwing

Rod Cross
2004 American Journal of Physics  
Measurements are presented of the speed at which objects of different mass can be projected by an overarm throw. Light objects can be thrown faster than heavy objects, although the difference in speed is not as large as one might expect. For a factor of 60 increase in the thrown mass, there was a decrease of only 2.4 in the throw speed. The relatively small change in throw speed is due to the fact that the force that can be applied to a thrown object increases with object mass. Estimates of the
more » ... s. Estimates of the muscle forces involved indicate that the increase in force with mass is primarily an inertial rather than a physiological effect. The total kinetic energy of the mass, hand, and the forearm was found to be almost independent of the object mass, and the throw speed is almost independent of the mass of the upper arm.
doi:10.1119/1.1634964 fatcat:bxrz5rv32fgx5pgubz3w4ox2li