BUFFALO — Learning about physics, math and biology might not be at the top of a list of things kids consider fun to do.
Organizers at the Buffalo Museum of Science said they recognized that fact, which is why they put together a new exhibit — “The Science of Sports” — that teaches these subjects but with sports thrown in to add a bit of fun.
“When kids are enjoying sports and they’re out there playing they’re not necessarily understanding all the physics and all the biology that goes with what they’re doing,” said Amy Biber, the museum’s marketing manager. “ ‘The Science of Sports’ is really bringing that to life. It is helping kids learn about all these different areas of science but through play and fun and activity.”
The exhibit is actually comprised of two parts: a travelling exhibit all about football and a museum-organized collection of activities focused on hockey, baseball, lacrosse and sports health. BMS curators partnered with local sports teams — the Bills, Sabres, Bisons and Bandits — as well as New Era Cap, Harris Beach and University at Buffalo Orthopaedics to create pieces to add to the national exhibit about football.
“Buffalo is more than football ... we can’t just focus on that,” said Brian Enright, the museum’s community partners coordinator. “We reached out to Bills and Sabres over the course of a year and a half or so, and we put in the effort to cover all these sports.”
The Sabres organization, for instance, loaned BMS the use of its RapidShot and RapidHands Hockey Simulation Training Systems, technology used by professional hockey players around the world. With the RapidShot, museum-goers can try their hands at taking one-timers from a machine that automatically shoots pucks (softly) toward their sticks. The RapidHands machine prompts users to stick handle a puck over sensors on the ground while watching a screen for directions.