# The principle of moments

If an object is balanced, the total clockwise about a is equal to the total anticlockwise moment about that pivot. This is called ‘the principle of moments’.

If the object is balanced: total clockwise moment = total anticlockwise moment. The diagrams show two examples of balanced objects where there is no .

A ball at the bottom of a trough

A balanced see-saw

An object in will not turn or accelerate - there is no overall (resultant) force and the clockwise moments are equal to the anticlockwise moments.

For a balanced object, you can calculate:

• the size of a force, or
• the perpendicular distance of a force from the pivot

### Example

A parent and child are at opposite ends of a playground see-saw. The parent weighs 750 N and the child weighs 250 N. The child sits 2.4 m from the pivot. Calculate the distance the parent must sit from the pivot for the see-saw to be balanced.

child's moment = force × distance

250 N × 2.4 m = 600 Nm

Parent's moment = child's moment

Rearrange to find d for the parent:

Then calculate using the values: