Sports & Recreation

Setting the Curve: The Magnus Effect and its Applications

2019-11-13T11:46:28-08:00 October 28th, 2019|Issue V, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Introduction Throughout our daily lives, there are elements of design and engineering all around us, most of which go completely unnoticed. Whether it’s the chair you’re sitting on, your favorite pen, or the individual bricks in a building, they all needed to be engineered and designed to function. However, just because something goes unnoticed doesn’t [...]

The “Aero-Position”: Why Cyclists Study Aerodynamics

2019-11-13T11:38:35-08:00 July 1st, 2019|Aerospace Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Ergonomics, Issue III, Lifestyle, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Written by: Riley Walch Riley Walch is a junior studying Mechanical Engineering at the University of Southern California. He has interests in the intersection of the human body and engineering and hopes to turn this curiosity into a career, upon graduation. Abstract Greg LeMond’s 1989 Tour de France victory, aided by research-driven cycling advancements, marked [...]

Serving up Some Knowledge: The Physics of Tennis

2019-11-13T11:38:04-08:00 April 9th, 2019|Issue II, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract The shots of a professional tennis player may look like magic, seemingly defying the laws of science before your eyes. But it all becomes much simpler when you understand the physics behind tennis. This article focuses on the generation of spin on a tennis ball, how to maximize the power of a shot, and [...]

On-Screen Graphics and Their Impact on Sports

2019-11-13T11:37:53-08:00 April 9th, 2019|Computer Science, Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract Since the mid 90’s, networks have projected virtual graphics onto the field during sporting events for at-home viewers; the most successful example is the 1st and Ten yellow line system used in football. By providing the audience with important information without distracting from the game, the system has changed how we watch football. Despite [...]

Fitness trackers: How they work and their highly anticipated future

2019-11-13T11:37:43-08:00 April 9th, 2019|Health & Medicine, Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract Millions of people around the world wear fitness trackers daily to record their physiological conditions. These devices contain a variety of different sensors that allow the user to measure heart rate, sleeping patterns, steps taken, and more. The physics behind these sensors can be relatively simple. However, the most interesting component of fitness trackers [...]

Sneakers as a Science: Engineering Fashion for Comfort, Support, and Style

2019-11-13T11:37:28-08:00 April 9th, 2019|Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Hailey Manuel is a senior studying computer science and business administration at the University of Southern California. She is intrigued by streetwear and the different uses sneakers have other than for style.

The Engineering Behind the Happiest Place on Earth

2019-03-07T17:38:27-08:00 March 7th, 2019|Entertainment, Industrial Engineering, Issue I, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract Disney uses fundamental industrial and systems engineering principles to create the optimal environment for maximum customer satisfaction in their amusement parks.  By embedding efficient processes in their park layout such as the line design, FastPass system, and the Magic Band, Disney has seemingly made mundane processes magical.  Disney pushes the envelope of innovation, shaping [...]

Fully Automatic Timing: The Most Reliable Sports Referee

2019-03-07T17:37:46-08:00 March 7th, 2019|Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Entertainment, Issue I, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract There’s nothing quite like the thrill of watching a close finish in racing sports such as track and swimming. However, sometimes these finishes are so close that they leave fans, and even referees, wondering who actually completed the race first. To address this ambiguity, the Fully Automatic Timing (FAT) system has been developed. This [...]

AI Behind AlphaGo: Machine Learning and Neural Network

2019-03-07T17:37:21-08:00 March 7th, 2019|Computer Science, Entertainment, Health & Medicine, Issue I, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract The board game Go has been viewed as one of the most challenging tasks for artificial intelligence because it is “complex, pattern-based and hard to program”. The computer program AlphaGo’s victory over Lee Sedol became a huge moment in the history of artificial intelligence and computer engineering. We can observe AlphaGo’s enormous capacity,  but [...]

The Future of Surfing

2018-10-31T12:34:00-07:00 October 26th, 2018|Issue II, Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume XVII, Volume XVIII|

Introduction   Surfing. When you hear that word, what comes to mind? You might think of a guy on a surfboard speeding down the face of a monstrous sixty-foot wave, an aged Hawaiian man paddling into the sunset, a smiling Bethany Hamilton holding her surfboard, or maybe even the Beach Boys. The general sentiment towards [...]

Engineering NBA Players’ Health

2018-01-19T06:26:43-08:00 October 25th, 2015|Computer Science, Health & Medicine, History & Society, Issue III, Lifestyle, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume XVII|

Modern wearable sensors utilize global positioning system (GPS) technology to track basic movement data that has both statistical and medical implications in the sports world. This article highlights the ingenuity of such sensors, which weigh only one ounce yet contain an accelerometer (measures starts and stops), gyroscope (measures bending and twisting of the body), magnetometer [...]

Solving the Brain Crisis in Sports

2018-01-19T06:19:49-08:00 June 25th, 2015|Biomedical Engineering, Health & Medicine, Issue III, Lifestyle, Material Science, Sports & Recreation, Volume XVII|

Over the past few decades professional and collegiate football leagues have garnered significant attention regarding the health and safety issues that players face, specifically pertaining to concussions and brain health. While head injuries can occur in a variety of different ways, hard hits involving the helmets of one or more players are identified as the [...]

Fast & Furious: The Science behind Badminton Smashes

2017-10-26T18:39:50-07:00 December 11th, 2013|Issue II, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume XVI|

Badminton Smash is a shot that demonstrates the player’s ultimate power and control. There are certain things that can help nonprofessionals smash like professionals. These things will be discussed in detail in this essay. The Engineering behind Badminton. (Flash) Introduction Badminton is a racket sport like tennis, except that a bird (also called shuttlecock, [...]

Wearable Contact-Lens Display: The Next Generation of Wearable Technology

2017-10-26T18:55:24-07:00 July 29th, 2013|Communication, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Entertainment, Food & Drink, Health & Medicine, Industrial Engineering, Issue I, Lifestyle, Sports & Recreation, Transportation, Volume XVII|

Engineers are on the brink of major breakthroughs in creating contact lenses that offer wearers all of the functionality of a computer or smartphone. Earlier iterations of this technology have been confined to clunky glasses and goggles. However, new composite materials that combine graphene and silver nanowires are making it possible to create a display [...]

Composite Technology and the Hockey Stick Revolution

2017-11-11T17:25:16-08:00 April 27th, 2011|Issue II, Material Science, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIII|

Over the last decade, the game of hockey has changed significantly, especially due to advances in composite hockey stick technology. This paper discusses the progression of hockey stick composition throughout the years as well as important properties of hockey sticks and how the composition of sticks affects these properties. It also examines the slap shot, [...]

How Tennis Can Save Soccer: Hawk-Eye Crossing Sports

2017-08-11T15:53:40-07:00 November 10th, 2010|Sports & Recreation|

The 2010 FIFA World cup highlighted one of soccer’s growing issues: incorrect calls that determine the outcomes of games. FIFA President Sepp Blatter has denied the implementation of any technology in soccer multiple times. Elsewhere in sports, tennis currently uses an electronic system called Hawk-Eye that has proven to be extremely effective at judging line [...]

Soaring to New Heights: The Evolution of Pole Vaulting and Pole Materials

2017-11-11T16:49:05-08:00 September 1st, 2010|Issue II, Material Science, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume XII|

Pole vaulting is an incredibly dynamic and complex sport that requires high levels of athleticism, precision, and skill. The process of the vault involves the transfer of energy from the vaulter to the pole, and finally back to the vaulter as he is launched into the air. As a result, the vault relies heavily on [...]

The New Dimension of Entertainment: 3D Technology

2017-11-11T17:04:01-08:00 May 4th, 2010|Art, Computer Science, Entertainment, Issue III, Lifestyle, Material Science, Sports & Recreation, Volume XII|

Image depth is created by three processes: layering, line perspective, and binocular stereoscopy. The first two are most effective in creating 2D paintings while binocular stereoscopy is used in 3D media today. Stereoscopy employs the same principles as natural binocular vision by layering two slightly different images, which will then be separated for each eye, [...]

Engineering Snow

2017-11-11T03:47:05-08:00 December 7th, 2005|Issue III, Sports & Recreation, Volume IX|

In the middle of the 20th century a device was invented that would forever change the way that ski areas operate -- the man-made snow machine. Snow sports enthusiasts have long been at the mercy of the weather to give them desired snow conditions. However, ski areas now rely significantly less on the weather to [...]

The Science Behind Tennis Racquet Performance and Choosing the Right Racquet

2017-11-11T17:18:44-08:00 November 4th, 2005|Entertainment, Issue II, Mechanical Engineering, Sports & Recreation, Volume VIII|

The quest of finding the perfect tennis racquet can be very arduous. There are so many factors to consider when choosing a racquet. One's playing style along with various features of a racquet should all be taken into consideration. The sweet spot, moment, torque, torsion, impulse reaction, shock, work, power and control are important aspects [...]

Swimming: A Dragging Battle Against the Forces of Physics

2018-11-07T16:44:07-08:00 September 1st, 2005|Issue II, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume VII|

In a sport where a hundredth of a second can make all the difference, swimmers are constantly looking for ways to increase the efficiency of their stroke and improve their times. However, the physical force of drag remains a swimmer's ultimate obstacle. There are multiple forms of drag - friction, pressure, and wave - and [...]

American Football: That Magic Yellow Line

2018-11-07T16:42:14-08:00 April 6th, 2005|Issue III, Sports & Recreation, Volume VII|

Virtual technology has brought a whole new perspective to watching football from your couch. The implementation of first-down lines in television broadcasts of America's homegrown sport has provided fans with a viewing experience that integrates cutting edge technology into the fast-paced world of athletics. This single yellow line may appear simple enough; however, its appearance [...]

Doping in Sports: Blood Oxygenation Enhancement

2018-11-07T10:27:38-08:00 December 8th, 2004|Health & Medicine, Issue I, Sports & Recreation, Volume VI|

Doping is the use of performance enhancing drugs or methods by athletes to gain a competitive advantage. Blood oxygenation enhancement is a type of doping that artificially increases an individual's hemoglobin concentration above normally occurring levels. Two common methods of blood doping are blood transfusion, or the transfer of blood into a person's vein, and [...]

Getting the Boot

2018-11-07T16:09:44-08:00 October 24th, 2004|Ergonomics, Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume VI|

Beneath even the biggest soccer stars is a pair of shoes designed and tested by engineers to push the limits of the game. The soccer boot (the traditional name for a soccer shoe) has evolved a great deal in form and function, particularly in the past few decades. To keep up with the sport's growing [...]

The Changing Face of Paintball

2019-01-10T10:49:13-08:00 December 7th, 2003|Issue V, Mechanical Engineering, Sports & Recreation, Volume V|

At its essence, paintball is about marking other players with gelatin capsules filled with colored dye shot from a gun powered by compressed gas. While the fundamentals of the game have not changed since its inception, the technologies behind many of its principles have advanced. Fuelling this change is the development of newer, more sophisticated [...]

The Frisbee

2019-01-10T11:12:17-08:00 May 2nd, 2003|Entertainment, Issue III, Physics, Sports & Recreation|

The Frisbee, generally held to be a simple toy for children, was invented and refined in the late nineteenth century. Although it has grown in popularity since then, its general design, and thus the technique for its use, have remained fairly constant. The flight of a Frisbee is allowed and governed by the principles of [...]

The Quest for the Perfect Racket: Advances in Tennis Racket Design

2019-01-10T11:58:32-08:00 December 6th, 2002|Issue I, Mechanical Engineering, Sports & Recreation, Volume V|

The tennis racket has experienced continuous improvements to meet the performance demands of professional players. In designing a better tennis racket, engineers and scientists need to understand exactly what happens when the ball collides with the racket. The racket frame, strings, and tennis ball experience energy transfer, resulting in deformations of all three components. With [...]

Engineering Kites Beyond Flight

2017-10-27T11:25:28-07:00 October 1st, 2002|Aerospace Engineering, Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume I|

Kites have existed for thousands of years, but even today, little is understood about them. While the aerodynamics of a kite are known in theory, in practice deformability makes its behavior highly unpredictable - yet, precise control of kites has rarely been a concern since kite flying has been relegated to the hobbyist's realm. The [...]

Curveballs and Knuckleballs: Engineering Principles at Work in America’s Favorite Pastime

2018-11-07T13:06:37-08:00 September 2nd, 2002|Aerospace Engineering, Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume VI|

The art of pitching a baseball requires great skill and dexterity to master. A great pitcher is one who understands the engineering of the baseball itself and the aerodynamic principles at work while the ball is in flight. Furthermore, a great pitcher is able to exploit these laws of physics with a variety of pitches, [...]

The Pivot Advantage

2018-11-07T13:14:35-08:00 April 6th, 2002|Issue I, Lifestyle, Material Science, Sports & Recreation, Volume VI|

Scuba divers rely on diving fins for underwater propulsion. Recent advancements in fin technology have increased divers' locomotive efficiency, with some designs drawing ideas from structures in nature for improvement. Traditional paddle fins have been modified to include grooved surfaces, pivoting structures, and split designs to maximize forward thrust per kick and reduce energy expenditure. [...]

Formula One Race Cars: Blurring the Lines between Art and Science

2018-11-07T13:20:19-08:00 April 1st, 2002|Issue II, Mechanical Engineering, Sports & Recreation, Volume VI|

In order for the Formula One industry to produce some of the fastest cars in the world, art, science, and engineering must find common ground. Fierce competition and numerous regulations necessitate new design approaches in order to gain the few milliseconds that can separate the winners from the losers. Designers, engineers and computer scientists utilize [...]

Engineering a Smooth Ride: Creating the Perfect Ski Through Shaping and Vibration Damping

2018-11-07T15:57:44-08:00 March 30th, 2002|Entertainment, Issue III, Lifestyle, Sports & Recreation, Volume VI|

Although snow skis appear to be very basic products, the engineering behind them is surprisingly involved. The type of skiing and type of snow conditions dictate the required ski geometry. Avid skiers have longed for a high-performance, all-around ski. Vibration caused by high speeds and tough terrain has been a significant problem faced by engineers [...]

The Engineering Behind Shoe Design

2017-10-26T18:36:09-07:00 October 1st, 2000|Issue III, Lifestyle, Material Science, Sports & Recreation, Volume II|

Shoe design is a complex process that involves the collaboration of a variety of individuals, including runners, craftsmen, technicians, scientists, and doctors. This article will focus on the complicated efforts that stand behind a relatively simple piece of athletic equipment: the running shoe. Introduction They were dreaming about running . . . Knifing through the [...]

Roller Coasters

2017-10-26T18:41:57-07:00 April 1st, 2000|Aerospace Engineering, Issue I, Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume I|

Millions of people ride roller coasters every year and have turned the roller coaster business into a billion dollar industry. Usually, while the passengers are whizzing around on the hills of the coaster they aren't thinking about the designers that made the rides possible or the laws of physics that coasters are based on. Roller [...]