CBSE Class 9 Science Force and laws of motion Notes

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A force is anything that can cause a change to objects. Forces can:

• change the shape of an object

• move or stop an object

• change the direction of a moving object.

A force can be classified as either a contact force or a non-contact force.

A contact force must touch or be in contact with an object to cause a change. Examples of contact forces are:

• the force that is used to push or pull things, like on a door to open or close it

• the force that a sculptor uses to turn clay into a pot

• the force of the wind to turn a windmill

A non-contact force does not have to touch an object to cause a change. Examples of noncontact forces are:

• the force due to gravity, like the Earth pulling the Moon towards itself

• the force due to electricity, like a proton and an electron attracting each other

• the force due to magnetism, like a magnet pulling a paper clip towards itself

The unit of force is the newton (symbol N). This unit is named after Sir Isaac Newton who first defined force. Force is a vector quantity and has a magnitude and a direction.


1. Force can make a stationary body in motion. For example a football can be set to move by kicking it, i.e. by applying a force.

2. Force can stop a moving body – For example by applying brakes, a running cycle or a running vehicle can be stopped.

3. Force can change the direction of a moving object. For example; By applying force, i.e. by moving handle the direction of a running bicycle can be changed. Similarly by moving steering the direction of a running vehicle is changed.

4. Force can change the speed of a moving body – By accelerating, the speed of a running vehicle can be increased or by applying brakes the speed of a running vehicle can be decreased.

5. Force can change the shape and size of an object. For example -– By hammering, a block of metal can be turned into a thin sheet. By hammering a stone can be broken into pieces.

Forces are can also divided into two types:

1. Balanced Forces

2. Unbalanced Forces

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