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Understanding Mechanics

by Ron Kurtus (updated 17 March 2023)

Mechanics is a branch of Physics that is concerned with the study of motion and forces on objects. The material here will concentrate on classical or everyday mechanics.

Classical Mechanics is divided into kinematics and dynamics. Kinematics is concerned with the motion of objects without consideration of the causes of motion. Dynamics concerns the relationship between the motion of bodies and its causes, namely the forces acting on the bodies and the properties of the bodies.

The knowledge of Mechanics is important for the development of the products we use. It is also an interesting and exciting subject of value in many walks of life. There is a great need for people who understand scientific principles and know how to think logically. Your knowledge and skills in these areas can help you excel in school, advance your career or improve your business.

The purpose of these free online lessons is to give you a start at improving your scientific knowledge of physics that will help you become a champion in the field.

Mechanics Contents


Overview of Mechanics

-- Classical Mechanics

-- Relativistic Mechanics

-- Quantum Mechanics


Kinematics is concerned with the motion of objects without consideration of the causes of motion.

Kinematics and Motion

Speed and Velocity


Vectors Show Direction of Motion


Dynamics concerns the relationship between the motion of bodies and forces causing that motion.

Motion laws

Newton's Laws of Motion

Motion and the Law of Inertia

Derivation of a Simple Collision

Applications of Collision Equations

Periodic Motion

Some forces are required

Periodic Motion

Pendulum Exhibits Periodic Motion

Simple Pendulum Equations

Newton's Cradle

Derivation of How Newton's Cradle Works

Wave Motion

Overview of Wave Motion

Units of Frequencies and Wavelengths

Doppler Effect for Waveforms

Conventions for Doppler Effect Equations

Summary of Doppler Effect Equations

Derivation of Doppler Effect Wavelength Equations

Derivation of Doppler Effect Frequency Equations

Derivation of Doppler Effect Velocity Equations

Waves and Obstacles

Waveform Noise


Force affects the motion of an object

Characteristics of Force

Units of Force

Force Affects Motion

Force and Torque

The Mysterious Force at a Distance

Centripetal Force

Inertial and Real Forces

Centrifugal Force Caused by Inertia

Fundamental Forces

Pressure is Force per Unit Area

Gravity and Gravitation

Gravity and gravitation are forces that affect the motion of objects

See the main Gravity and Gravitation menu page.

Major topics are:

Overview of Gravity and Gravitation

Overview of Force of Gravity

Gravity Resources

Overview of Gravitation

Gravitation Resources

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Friction is a resistive force that affects the motion of an object


Coefficient of friction

Sliding friction

Rolling friction

Fluid friction

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Energy is a result of force.

Overview of Energy

Kinetic Energy Concerns Movement of Matter

Potential Energy

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Work is the force required to move an object some distance

Work is a Result of Force

Relationship between Work and Mechanical Energy

Proof that Work Can be the Change in Kinetic Energy

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Machines are devices that improve the mechanical advantage of the effort



Physics Resources

Physical Science



Experiments and Science Fair Projects

Interactive Graded Tests


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