Acceleration is the rate at which a body changes its velocity and is also a vector quantity which needs a direction as well. It is measured in m/s/s or metres per second per second (metres per second squared - m/s2).

For example in the first 30m of a 100m sprint the sprinters velocity will be increasing and will have 'positive acceleration'. After they pass the line they will slow down during which time they will have 'negative acceleration' or decceleration.

Acceleration (m/s2) = Vf - Vi (m/s) / time (s)

Acceleration = Velocity final - Velocity initial divided by time.

Related Articles

Newtons Laws of Motion

Sir Isaac Newton stated three laws which explain the relationship between force and movement. Having an understanding of Newton's laws which you can apply to sporting situations gives you a deeper...

Mass, Inertia & Momentum

Inertia is the reluctance of a boby to change whether it is moving or not and is related to its mass. Once a body is moving the momentum of the body is a product of its mass multiplied by its...

Speed & Velocity

Here we explain the difference between distance and displacement, vector and scalar quantities as well as speed and velocity in sport and how to do calculations.

Graphs of Motion

Graphs are a good way of showing motion. The two types of graphs which are of most interest are distance / time graphs and speed / time (or velocity / time) graphs. Graphs are particularly useful...