For Runners, Jumpers, and Throwers
Many students like to participate in high school track and field events, both during the outdoor summer season and the indoor winter season. Track and field is an excellent sport for those who want to increase their athleticism and agility without all the pressures of a team sport. While there are still some pressures to perform well for the team especially in meets or competitions, generally the track and field athlete is working against their personal bests and competing against others in their events.
In high school track and field, the events are divided into two categories: the races that are run on the track, and the events that take place in the field. Men and women typically don’t compete against each other, though time constraints mean that they sometimes race at the same time. While men and women do run the same distances, the hurdles are lower for women, and the weight of the throwing pieces of equipment like the shot, discus, javelin and hammer are less than for men.
Round and Round and Round he goes
The track events include sprints, middle distance, long distance, hurdles, and relays. Sprints consist of short-distance running races such as the 100 m, 200 m, 300 m, and 400 m. Middle distance events include the 800 m, 1500 m, and 3000 m as well as the mile and two mile race.
Long distance events are those where the distance is over 5000 m, such as the 5000 m and 10,000 m races. Hurdles are barriers that are spaced out to be jumped over during a race. The distance for hurdle races are 110 m (100 m for women) and 400 m. For the shorter hurdle races, the hurdles are 0.99 m for men and 0.84 m for women, and for the longer hurdle races, the hurdles are 0.91 m for men and 0.76 m for women.
Among the most exciting events in high school track and field are the relay races. The typical race lengths are 4 x 100 m, 4 x 200 m, 4 x 400 m, and 4 x 800 m. Some high schools also hold distance medley relays (DMR) and sprint medley relays (SMR). The DMR race is where one leg of the race is 1200 m, the next is 400 m, the next is 800 m, and the last is a lengthy 1600 m. The SMR consists of a 400 m leg, 2 200 m legs, followed by an 800 m leg. Some high schools shorten the distance of the SMR to a 200 m leg, 2 100 m legs, followed by a 400 m leg.
On the Inside Track
When racing outdoors, the field events usually take place on the inside of the track. They include throwing events, such as the shot put, hammer throw, javelin throw, and discus throw and the jumping events, like the high jump, long jump, triple jump, and pole vault.
Some schools even hold their own decathlon competitions, where one athlete competes in 10 different events over 2 consecutive days. The first day, the athletes perform the 100 m run, long jump, shot put, high ump, and 400 m run. The second day consists of the 110 m hurdles, discus throw, pole vault, javelin, and 1500 m race.