Air Resistance

Sample Video

Air Resistance


Air is all around us, and it might seem like it’s empty and weightless. However, air is not as empty as it seems. It exerts a force on objects that move through it, and this force is called air resistance. Let’s dive into the world of air resistance and discover how it affects the things we see every day.

What is Air Resistance?

Air resistance is a force that opposes the motion of objects through the air. Imagine sticking your hand out of a moving car’s window – you can feel the air pushing against your hand. This push is air resistance. It’s like a gentle hand trying to slow things down as they move through the air.

Factors that Influence Air Resistance:

The amount of air resistance an object experiences depends on a few things:

  1. Size: Bigger objects face more air resistance than smaller ones. A large sheet of paper will flutter down slower than a tiny paper ball.
  2. Shape: Objects with streamlined shapes, like a sleek rocket, encounter less air resistance than objects with flat surfaces or irregular shapes.
  3. Speed: Faster-moving objects experience more air resistance. Have you noticed how a feather falls slowly while a heavy book falls faster? That’s because the feather experiences more air resistance due to its slower speed.

Real-life Examples: You can see air resistance in action all around you:

  • When you ride a bicycle, you feel the force of air resistance against your face.
  • Birds spread their wings wide or tuck them in to adjust their air resistance and control their flight.
  • Parachutists use large parachutes to increase air resistance and slow down their fall.

How Engineers Use Air Resistance: Engineers and designers take air resistance into account when creating things like cars, airplanes, and even sports equipment. They design sleek and aerodynamic shapes to reduce air resistance, helping vehicles move faster and more efficiently. Conclusion: Air resistance might be invisible, but it’s a powerful force that affects the way objects move through the air. From the tiniest insect to the fastest race cars, everything encounters air resistance. Understanding and harnessing this force has helped us create amazing inventions that have changed the way we travel and explore our world.


  • Air resistance: The force that opposes the motion of objects through the air.
  • Streamlined: A shape that allows air or water to flow smoothly around it, reducing resistance.

Remember, learning about air resistance helps us appreciate the complex interactions between everyday things and the environment they move through.