Real Weight vs. Apparent Weight

Real Weight - what an object actually weighs, with no forces acting upon it.

  • Ex. When you are weighing yourself, if the scale did not exert and upward normal force and gravity did not exert a gravitational force on your body, then you would see your "real weight."

Apparent Weight - what an object weighs as a result of all the forces acting on it.

  • Ex. When you weigh yourself, there is a normal force of the scale and a gravitational force acting upon you, which causes the scale to show you your apparent weight.

  • If you were to have one foot on the scale and one on the floor, if you had someone push down on your shoulders, or had someone push up on your elbows, then there would be more forces acting upon you so your apparent weight would change.

external image apparent-weight2.jpg

By: Tawnie DeJong