Monday, 31 October 2011

Athletic Race Walk Tickets

Race walking is a long distance athletic event. Although it is a foot race, it is different from running in that one foot must appear to be in contact with the ground at all times. Stride length is reduced, so to achieve competitive speeds, race walkers must attain tempo rates comparable to those achieved by Olympic 400 meter runners and they must do so for hours at a time since the Olympic events are the 20 kilometer race walk and 50 kilometer race walk.
There are two rules that govern race walking. The first dictates that the athlete's back toe cannot leave the ground until the heel of the front foot has touched. Violation of this rule is known as loss of contact. The second rule requires that the supporting leg must straighten from the point of contact with the ground and remain straightened until the body passes directly over it. These rules are judged by the human eye, which creates controversy at today's high speeds. Athletes may sometimes lose contact for a few milliseconds per stride which can be caught on high-speed film, but such a short flight phase is undetectable to the human eye.
Athletes stay low to the ground by keeping their arms pumping low, close to their hips. If one sees a race walker's shoulders rising, it may be a sign that the athlete is losing contact with the ground. What appears to be an exaggerated swivel to the hip is, in fact, a full rotation of the pelvis. Athletes aim to move the pelvis forward, and to minimize sideways motion in order to achieve maximum forward propulsion. Speed is achieved by stepping quickly with the aim of rapid turnover. This minimizes the risk of the feet leaving the ground. Strides are short and quick, with push off coming forward from the ball of the foot, again to minimize the risk of losing contact with the ground. World-class race walkers (male and female) can average fewer than seven and eight minutes per mile, in a 20 km race walk.
Race walking is an Olympic athletics event with distances of 20 kilometers for both men and women and 50 kilometers for men only. Race walking first appeared in the modern Olympics in 1904 as a half-mile walk in the 'all-rounder,' the precursor to the 10 event decathlon. In 1908, stand-alone 1,500m and 3,000m race walks were added, and excluding 1924 there has been at least one race walk (for men) in every Olympics since. The women's race walk became an Olympic event only in 1992, following years of active lobbying by female internationals. A World Cup in race walking is held biennially, and race walk events appear in the IAAF Athletics World Championships, the Commonwealth Games and the Pan American Games, among others.
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