The Constructal Evolution of Sports with Throwing Motion: Baseball, Golf, Hockey and Boxing

The Constructal Evolution of Sports with Throwing Motion: Baseball, Golf, Hockey and Boxing

A. Bejan S. Lorente J. Royce D. Faurie T. Parran M. Black B. Ash 

Duke University, Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science, Durham, NC 27708-0300, USA

Université de Toulouse; UPS, INSA; LMDC (Laboratoire Matériaux et Durabilité des Constructions); 135, avenue de Rangueil; F-31 077 Toulouse Cedex 04, France

31 March 2013
| Citation



Here we show that the trends in four sports are united by the evolutionary constructal design of all animal locomotion. The trend is toward greater effi ciency in the falling-forward movement of the body, and this is why the evolution of the throwing motion unites team sports (baseball, hockey) with individual sports (golf, boxing, running and swimming). Records during the past 100 years indicate that in these sports the trend has been toward bigger and taller bodies, which possess greater speed of falling forward and throwing, greater force, and greater throwing distance. Equipment technology (golf balls, hockey sticks) has evolved in the same direction. In sum, the evolution of sports is in accord with the constructal law, and constitutes a “laboratory” for witnessing the evolution of biological design in our lifetime.


Baseball, Boxing, Constructal Law, Golf, Hockey, Sports evolution, Throwing motion


[1] Bejan, A., Advanced Engineering Thermodynamics, 2nd ed., Wiley: New York, 1997, chapter 13.

[2] Bejan, A. & Lorente, S., The constructal law and the evolution of design in nature. Phys. Life Rev, 8: pp. 209–240, 2011. doi:

[3] Bejan, A. & Zane, J.P., Design in Nature. How the Constructal Law Governs Evolution in  Biology, Physics, Technology and Social Organization, Doubleday: New York, 2012.

[4] Lorenzini, G. & Biserni, C., The Constructal Law: from design in nature to social dynamics and wealth as physics. Phys. Life Rev, 8, pp. 159–160, 2011. doi: j.plrev.2011.08.002

[5] Lorenzini, G., Biserni, C. & Rocha, L.A.O., Geometric optimization of isothermal cavities according to Bejan’s theory. Int. J. Heat Mass Transfer, 54, pp. 3868–3873, 2011. doi: http://

[6] Bejan, A. & Marden, J.H., Unifying constructal theory for scale effects in running, swimming and fl ying. J. Exp. Biol, 209, pp. 238–248, 2006. doi:

[7] Bejan, A. & Marden, J.H., The constructal unifi cation of biological and geophysical design. Phys. Life Rev, 6, pp. 85–102, 2006. doi:

[8] Lorente, S. & Bejan, A., Few large and many small: hierarchy in movement on Earth, Int J Design Nature Ecodyn, 5: pp. 254–267, 2010. doi:

[9] Charles, J.D. & Bejan, A., The evolution of speed, size and shape in modern athletics. J Exp Biol, 212, pp. 2419–2425, 2009. doi:

[10] Bejan, A., Jones, E.C. & Charles, J.D., The evolution of speed in athletics: why the fastest r unners are black and swimmers white. Int J Design Nature Ecodyn, 5(3), pp. 199–211, 2010. 


[11] Top Gun List – Fastest MLB Pitchers for the 2009 Season, available at http://www.efastball.

com/baseball/stats/2009/fastest-pitchers-in-the-major-leagues-2009-season/, (accessed 13 April 2011).

[12] Team Rosters Index, available at, (accessed 13 April 2011).

[13] available at

[14] “Golf Club History.” Golf Club Revue, available at, 2009.

[15] Technology and Tradition: Preserving the Balance. Titleist, available at http://www.titleist.

com/technologyandtradition, 7 July 2009.

[16] available at

[17] available at

[18] available at

[19] Hache, A., The Physics of Hockey, The Johns Hopkins University Press: Baltimore, MD, 2002.

[20] available at

[21] available at—23544

[22] available at—22968

[23] available at

[24] available at