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Air Walk

  1. Feb 27, 2005 #1
    As you know, Michael Jordan is well known for his ability to air walk. However, how was he able to do this? Can u explain this in Physics?

    By the way, how can people jump higher?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 27, 2005 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    Michael Jordan could jump high and far and he moved his legs while in the air. That's all. Long-jumpers do it too.
  4. Feb 28, 2005 #3
    While in the air, it is possible to move your body in ways that gives the impression of hang time, or air walk. The center of gravity describes a parabolla, but the head might not (if hands and feet don't). An example is bringing the ball from above your head to stomach level while in mid air. Another is straightening your forward leg from a forward postion to an underneath position. As far as the upper body is concerned, there is a second "jump" while in the air in both cases. MJ mastered both, in addition to having pure jumping power. When I personnally try to be like Mike, I can do it just sufficiently to feel the hang effect.

    Although I've never done it, it would be interesting to chart the trajectory of a red dot on MJ's waist and one on his head from video. The waist should form a nice parabolla, the head a distorted one (hands and feet even more so).
  5. Mar 1, 2005 #4


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    Jordan, like everyone else, is constrained by the laws of physics the moment he leaves the ground. His trajectory is a parabola determined by his speed and direction at take off. Anyone or anything that leaves the ground with the same force and direction will follow exactly the same arc. While he creates an admirable illusion of looking like he's hanging in the air longer than normal (Gonzolo's description nicely describes this illusion), the fact is, he does not. It's a myth.

    More push off. That's it. Oh, and maybe wings.
  6. Mar 4, 2005 #5
    just wondering, whitch might help help one jump higher? exercising the leg muscles (calf, that stuff) or exercising the ancle muscles? after all, while the legs give you the main push, the ankles give the final jump to it, ever try jumping without using your ankles campared to with? its different,

    although my parents are doctors, i soppose i should be asking them lol

  7. Mar 5, 2005 #6
    Roughly, gluts straighten the upper leg, quadriceps straighten the knee, calves straighten the ankle. I would say quads make most of the jump though. While stronger over a short range, calves alone doesn't give much altitude. Of course, the leaner the entire body, the better. I've never seen a fat dunker.
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