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Q & A: Free Throws Under Pressure

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Most recent answer: 10/22/2007
Q:
How does the air pressure in a basketball effect the accuracy of a free throw?
- Ezra (age 11)
Link-up,Oregon city School, Oregon City,OR USA
A:
Ezra -

Having never tried this, I can't really say for certain. But I would predict that the higher the pressure of the ball, the more accurate your free throws will be. The more pressure there is in the ball, the firmer its shape will be. If you've every thrown a ball with an irregular shape (say a wiffle ball), you know that it travels in a hard-to-predict path. So maybe the highly pressurized basketball will travel a little truer because it will be closer to a sphere. I have no idea if the effect is big enough to notice.

Mike

(published on 10/22/2007)

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