I'm somewhat stuck on this very simple question, but I can't convince myself of a satisfactory answer. I tried to look through the previous questions asked to avoid asking a duplicate I hope.
Any rotating object... say a rod in this case, sitting stationary in free space, when pushed at one end will cause a rotation about the center of mass. This means the pushed end and other end will move in opposite directions of each other.
The only way that the rod can transmit force down its length is through the interaction of each particle pushing/pulling on the next (tension perpendicular to the length) as it travels down the rod. Once you reach the center of mass, there is no induced rotation. How do the particles past the center of mass receive a push or pull at all if there is a point in the center which has no movement?
Additionally, how does this original force in the positive direction turn into movement in the negative direction past the center of mass? Essentially both of these questions can be answered by an explanation of how the particles inside an object behave when a torque is applied... which I cant find an answer to.
Edit: So I found this other post which asks a very similar question: Why does a rigid body rotate and not simply translate when pushed with an instantaneous force?
I feel that the corded particles explanation answer there is of the form I am imagining for this, but it seems that it doesn't explain the other side rotating backwards.
The particles in the rod near the push start to move forward, which "pull" on the neighboring particles via tension. Then at some point, this tension turns into compression, effectively pushing the particles past the center of mass downward.
Does anyone have a satisfactory internal particle explanation involving tension/compression caused by an initial force at one end which results in the final behavior of rotation of a rod? My understanding of rotational motion feels incomplete to me if I can't explain intuitively why something rotates when pushed off-center besides "if one side goes up, the other must go down".