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### Right Triangle Sides

```
Date: 09/14/98 at 22:45:53
From: Bobbi

I'm in grade 10 pre-calc math and usually everything comes really
easily when it comes to math, but I'm having a tough time with
trigonometry. I use SOHCOHTOA but I need help finding out which sides
```

```
Date: 09/25/98 at 21:33:58
From: Doctor Whitworth
Subject: Re: Identifying opposite and adjacent.

Dear Bobbi:

Opposite and adjacent sides depend on the angle to which they refer:

In a right angle triangle, look at the angle in question. This must be
one of the angles that is NOT the right angle (which is also called
the 90 degree angle). One side that meets your angle is the hypotenuse,
which is on a diagonal and directly across from the right degree angle.
The other side that meets your angle is called the adjacent side.

/
/  |
/    |
/      |
/        |
hypotenuse  /          | opposite
/            |
/              |
/            |---|
/ angle        |   |
/----------------|---| right angle

The angle is made up of two sides. One side will always be the
hypotenuse. The other side is always called the adjacent.

The third side of the triangle, which is neither the adjacent nor the
hypotenuse (so that it never goes near the angle) is called the
opposite side, since it usually lies across from the angle in
the question.

I hope this helps you to understand the problem you are dealing with.

Sincerely,

- Doctor Whitworth, The Math Forum
http://mathforum.org/dr.math/
```
Associated Topics:
High School Trigonometry

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