Years ago in college, I was between classes in the Physics Bldg, and saw this exam problem posted on the bulletin board:
“When you flip a tennis racket (holding the handle, one complete revolution, so you catch the handle) it does a half-turn in the axis perpendicular to the long axis. Why?”
Over the years, from time to time, playing badminton or tennis, for example, I’ve thought about this problem. Unfortunately, I was reading the “Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test” when I we were doing that chapter in Physics 101, so I don’t know the precise equations and principles which need to be applied to solve this.
So, you Physics scholars out there, Why? I suspect it has something to do with torque, or angular momentum, conservation therof, etc, etc. Please, no responses from illiterates with their “pyschic reasons” why there is a half-flip.
And why a half-flip, no more, no less?