Practical Relevances of Newton’s Laws of Motion

Newton’s laws of motion are one of the most important topics of the physics subject. The laws bring together the rationality for most of our everyday things involving motion. To understand how Newton’s laws control everything around us, here are some important practical relevances of Newton’s laws of motion in our day to day life.


Newton’s First Law of Motion

Also known as the law of inertia, Newtons first law of motion states that an object will stay in its initial state of motion (either in rest or in motion) unless and until an external and unbalanced force acts upon it.

Practical Relevances:

  • A truck lying on a flat surface remains unmoved even when someone pushes it. This is due to the inertia of rest. Here the truck tends to remain in its initial state of motion i.e. rest.
  • Similarly, if a moving car suddenly applies brakes, the passengers experience a jolt towards the car’s direction. This is simply because the passengers were in a state of motion initially and they try to remain in that state even when the car comes to sudden state of rest.

Newton’s Second Law of Motion

Newton’s Second Law of Motion states that a body starts accelerating when acted upon by an external unbalanced force. The acceleration produced is directly proportional to the amount of force applied and inversely proportional to the mass of the object.

Practical Relevances:

  • A person pushing a truck requires more strength and need to apply more force than a person pushing a small car. This is because the mass of the truck is much more than that of the car and thus, requires less force to accelerate.
  • In a cricket match, the fielders always pull back their arms while catching a ball. This is because the acceleration of the ball is gradually decreased while pulling back and the rate of change of momentum is reduced. Thus, the impact of catching the ball decreases and the fielders avoid getting hurt.

Newton’s Third Law of Motion

It states that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. This can be simply explained as- if a body L exerts a force on another body M, then L experience a same backward force from M. This law is also called as the law of action and reaction.

Practical Relevances:

  • When a balloon is punctured, air rushes out of it with a certain force. The same amount of force that is exerted while air rushes out (i.e. action) is also exerted inside the balloon (i.e. reaction) and the balloon flies in the opposite direction. This same principle is also used in rocket propulsions.
  • When a person pulls the trigger of a rifle or gun, a force is applied on the bullets in forward direction which can be considered as action. That same force is also exerted on the gun in the backward direction which is reaction. This phenomenon of backward movement is called as the recoil of the gun.

These were just a few examples of Newton’s laws of motion in our everyday life. The importance of these three laws can never be ignored. It can be said that these laws controls most of our daily activities from playing games to driving a car, etc.

Also, the whole of mechanics in physics
is based on these fundamental laws by Newton. So, it is extremely necessary for every student to be very well acquainted with the laws of motion to be able to understand the concepts in later grades and during their higher studies.

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