# Kinematics vs. Dynamics — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman — Updated on October 30, 2023
Kinematics is the study of motion without considering its causes. Dynamics is the study of motion and the forces causing it.

## Key Differences

Kinematics focuses on describing motion through parameters like velocity and acceleration. Dynamics deals with the forces and torques causing the motion.
In kinematics, the cause of motion is not considered. Dynamics, however, analyzes why an object moves, attributing it to forces.
Kinematics uses mathematical equations for motion description. Dynamics involves Newton's laws of motion to explain forces and motion.
Kinematics is about the "how" of motion. Dynamics answers the "why" behind the motion.
Examples of kinematics include projectile motion analysis. Dynamics can be seen in analyzing the forces in a car engine.

## Comparison Chart

### Focus

Motion description
Forces causing motion

### Causes of Motion

Not considered
Analyzed and considered

Ignored
Central to study

### Mathematical Approach

Equations for motion parameters
Newton's laws of motion

### Practical Example

Calculating a ball's trajectory
Determining forces in a crashing car

## Compare with Definitions

#### Kinematics

Examining how objects move.
Kinematics helped understand the ball's trajectory.

#### Dynamics

Analyzing motion causes.
Dynamics explains why the pendulum swings.

#### Kinematics

Investigating speed changes.
Kinematics explores how quickly the car accelerates.

#### Dynamics

Considering rotational forces.
Dynamics helps design more efficient wind turbines.

#### Kinematics

Motion without considering forces.
Kinematics describes the roller coaster's speed, not why it moves.

#### Dynamics

Studying forces in balance.
Dynamics assesses the stability of a bridge.

#### Kinematics

Concentrating on positional changes.
Kinematics reveals the drone's path.

#### Dynamics

Utilizing Newtonian mechanics.
Dynamics examines the forces in a collision.

#### Kinematics

Formulas describing motion.
Kinematics uses equations to predict a planet's orbit.

#### Dynamics

(used with a sing. verb) The branch of mechanics that is concerned with the effects of forces on the motion of a body or system of bodies, especially of forces that do not originate within the system itself. Also called kinetics.

#### Kinematics

Kinematics is a subfield of physics, developed in classical mechanics, that describes the motion of points, bodies (objects), and systems of bodies (groups of objects) without considering the forces that cause them to move. Kinematics, as a field of study, is often referred to as the "geometry of motion" and is occasionally seen as a branch of mathematics.

#### Dynamics

(used with a pl. verb) The forces and motions that characterize a system
The dynamics of ocean waves are complex.

#### Kinematics

The branch of mechanics that studies the motion of a body or a system of bodies without consideration given to the forces acting on it.

#### Dynamics

(used with a pl. verb) The social, intellectual, or moral forces that produce activity and change in a given sphere
The dynamics of international trade have influenced our business decisions on this matter.

#### Kinematics

(physics) The branch of mechanics concerned with objects in motion, but not with the forces involved.

#### Dynamics

(used with a pl. verb) Variation in force or intensity, especially in musical sound.

#### Kinematics

The science which treats of motions considered in themselves, or apart from their causes; the comparison and relation of motions.

#### Dynamics

(used with a sing. verb) Psychodynamics.

#### Kinematics

The branch of mechanics concerned with motion without reference to force or mass

#### Dynamics

(mechanics) The branch of mechanics that is concerned with the effects of forces on the motion of objects.

#### Dynamics

(music) The volume of the sound, such as piano, mezzo piano, mezzo forte, and forte.

#### Dynamics

Forces that stimulate growth, change, or development.
The changing dynamics in international politics led to such an outcome.

#### Dynamics

That branch of mechanics which treats of the motion of bodies (Kinematics) and the action of forces in producing or changing their motion (kinetics). Dynamics is held by some recent writers to include statics and not kinematics.

#### Dynamics

The moving moral, as well as physical, forces of any kind, or the laws which relate to them.

#### Dynamics

That department of musical science which relates to, or treats of, the power of tones.

#### Dynamics

The branch of mechanics concerned with the forces that cause motions of bodies

#### Dynamics

Looking at kinetic and potential energy.
Dynamics investigates the energy conversions in a roller coaster.

## Common Curiosities

#### What does kinematics focus on?

It focuses on describing motion without forces.

#### Are both fields part of physics?

Yes, they're essential branches of physics.

#### What is dynamics mainly about?

It studies the forces causing motion.

#### Is force analysis part of dynamics?

Yes, it's a key aspect of dynamics.

#### Does kinematics consider why things move?

No, it only describes how things move.

#### Can kinematics describe a car's speed?

Yes, but not the reasons for its speed.

#### Does dynamics use Newton's laws?

Yes, they are fundamental to dynamics.

#### Is kinematics important in animation?

Yes, for animating realistic motion.

#### Is torque studied in dynamics?

Yes, especially in rotational systems.

#### Do engineers use dynamics?

Absolutely, in designing and analyzing systems.

#### Is kinematics simpler than dynamics?

It's generally less complex, as it ignores forces.

#### Can dynamics help in accident analysis?

Yes, by examining forces involved in impacts.

#### Does kinematics involve energy?

It doesn't directly deal with energy concepts.

#### Can kinematics predict projectile paths?

Yes, it's commonly used for that.

#### Do dynamics principles apply to space?

Absolutely, they're crucial in astrophysics.

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