Sometimes, a picture is worth a thousand words.
Take a look at the finish of the women's 100m.
|Torie Bowie (lane 7, US) wins 100m over Marie-Josee Ta Lou (lane 4, Ivory Coast)
Note the positions of Bowie and Ta Lou.
Bowie is leaning forward so far that she lost control of her footing.
Ta Lou is straight up and almost leaning back.
There it is: the difference in the race.
1/100th of a second.
Here is what happens next:
|Bowie's momentum causes her to fall after the finish line.
Here is the difference 1/100th of a second can make in someone's life: