Bridge circuits are widely used for the measurement of resistance, capacitance, and inductance. The resistive bridge, also known as Wheatstone bridge, is discussed in this section.

If the bridge is initially balanced, the initial voltage reading V_{g} should be zero. This yields the following relationship between the four resistances,

We can use this result to simplify the previous equation that includes the changes in the resistances. Doing so results in the solution for the change in V_{g},

where h is defined by,

Moreover, when the resistance changes are small (< 5%), the second order term h is approximately zero and can be ignored. We then have,

which is the basic equation governing the Wheatstone bridge voltage in strain measurement. The coefficient is called the circuit efficiency.

In practice, one often uses the same resistance value for all four resistors, R_{1} = R_{2} = R_{3} = R_{4} = R. Noting that r = 1 in this case, the change in voltage can be further simplified to,

By thoughtfully selecting the target and reference resistances, the Wheatstone bridge circuit can amplify small changes in resistance and/or compensate for changes in temperature.