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## David Beckham is a Mathematician!

but he might not know it…

This isn’t a joke.  He might speak like a dumbass but, when David Beckham strikes the ball, his unconscious mind is performing an incredible array of mathematical calculations without his realising it.

When he takes a free kick, for example, he must evaluate many factors including:

• position of the ball
• distance to the goal
• height of and distance to wall of defenders
• air resistance (which depends on speed of ball, which will decrease as the ball slows down)
• reaction time of defenders and goalkeeper
• an evaluation of the unpredictable movements of defenders and he approaches the ball

and more…  Also, with all this in mind, he has to decide how to strike the ball, evaluating another set of factors, including:

• how hard to kick the ball
• what part of the foot to use and which part of the ball to strike
• the mass of the ball, its internal air pressure and the friction of the leather
• spin to put on the ball to cause it to curve through the air

The equations that govern many of these factors are astronomically huge.  In fact, most are far too complicated to write down or even program into a computer – only the human brain has the power to compute it all in a few seconds.  That’s why, in the conscious world, we use equations to simplify real-life situations.

And there are probably a whole load more factors that he processes, but I’m not a footballer so I’d be guessing.