Can the normal force on an object ever do work on the object? Explain your answer.
The answer in the textbook is:
The normal force can do work on an object. For example, when you jump, you push down on the ground and the normal
force pushes up on you and accelerates you up, giving you kinetic energy.
The Attempt at a Solution
My initial answer before reading the textbook was, no, it can't do work.
I understand that when an object is moving on a surface, the normal force is perpendicular to the distance traveled and so it is zero.
With respect to the answer in the textbook, work is the energy transferred to an object when a force acting on it causes it to move a certain distance. Since, the normal force is a contact force, it only occurs when in contact with a surface. Wouldn't it would be zero as soon as the object loses contact or jumps. Wouldn't this mean that the normal force doesn't do work on the object..., or am i missing something?