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ATHLETICS 



ATHLETICS 



BY 

D. G. A. LOW E 

(PRESIDENT, C.U.A.C., 1924-25) 

AND 

A. E. POJLRITT 

(PRESIDENT, O.U.A.C., 1925-26) 



WITH ILLUSTRATIONS 



LONGMANS, GREEN AND CO. 

LONDON * NEW YORK I TORONTO 

1929 



LONGMANS, GREEN AND CO. LTD. 

39 PATERNOSTER ROW, LONDON, E.C.4 

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Made in Guat Britain 



TO THE 

UNIVERSITY ATHLETIC CLUBS 

OF 
OXFORD AND CAMBRIDGE 

THE AUTHORS 
ARE PERMITTED TO DEDICATE THIS BOOK; 

AND THEY DO SO 

IN GRATEFUL REMEMBRANCE 

OF THE PRIVILEGE OF THEIR MEMBERSHIP 



PREFACE 

THE appearance of yet another contribution to 
the literature of Athletics seems to call for some 
explanation in a decade which has witnessed a 
considerable output of works on that subject. Simply 
to have written another text-book on some particular 
branches of the sport would merit criticism ; but we 
venture to think that a comprehensive study of the whole 
subject is sufficiently original and desirable to justify 
the present volume. 

Among all the modern books on Athletics there exists 
none, as far as we are aware, which treats of the sport 
from every angle. It has been our aim to present, in a 
way which has not been attempted since Sir Montague 
Shearman's classic in the 'eighties, a complete tudy not 
only of the technical side of Athletics, including its 
application to women and boys, but also of its history 
and records. With this object in view the scope of the 
present work falls within two main categories. In the 
first, we have thought fit to relate the historical develop- 
ment of the sport throughout the world, treating such 
important topics as the Olympic Games and International 
Athletics as distinct phases. In the second, we have 
dealt at length with the technique of the sport, and we 
fiave rendered each section, whether on running, 
jumping or throwing, as authoritative as possible, 

It is quite evident, of course, that no two authors, 
however experienced or versatile, could write with 
personal knowledge of all the many and widely diverse 
events which comprise an athletic sports programme. 
To overcome this difficulty we sought and obtained 
assistance. It has been our great good fortune to secure 
the collaboration of two experts in some of the most 
technical subjects of which we had to treat. Mr. C. T. 
Van Geyzel, holder of the Cambridge, High Jump 



viii PREFACE 

Record and A.A.A. Champion in 1926, has contributed 
the chapter on this event ; and the throwing events have 
been dealt with as a whole by Mr. M. C. Nokes, four 
times A.A.A. Champion (1923-6) in Throwing the 
Hammer and third in the 1924 Olympic Games. 

Furthermore, we have to acknowledge our great 
indebtedness to Mr. H. M. Abrahams, who most kindly 
read the original typescript and out of his wide experience 
offered us much valuable criticism ; to many secretaries 
of foreign athletic associations who corrected the relevant 
lists of records ; and to the Sport and General for the 
photographs from which are reproduced many of the 
drawings in this book. 

These drawings have been deliberately used instead 
of photographs in order better to elucidate the text. 
They are line drawings composed from actual photo- 
graphs, and only the essentials of the particular 
movement illustrated are reproduced. They are meant, 
in fact, to be purely instructive. They combine strict 
accuracy with the excision of all that unnecessary detail 
which so often prevents concentration when studying 
photographs in conjunction with the text ; and we hope 
that their utility will compensate for the absence from 
this volume of a more attractive form of illustration. 

Finally, at the end of the book will be found the 
inevitable list of records, and we have added a few 
comparative tables which we hope will not be without 
interest. At the same time we have endeavoured to 
reduce this record list to the minimum size, believing 
that no one save the specialist or record fiend desires 
complete and complicated tables. For a similar reason 
we have not printed any laws or regulations except 
where they are quoted in the text as being relevant to 
the subject there dealt with : anyone requiring these 
can, of course, obtain them in extenso from the various 
Amateur Athletic Associations, 

D. G. A. L. 

A. E. P. 

LONDON, March 1929. 



CONTENTS 

CHAPTER PAGE 

AUTHORS' PREFACE ...... vii 

I. THE HISTORY OF ATHLETICS : 

Section i. Ancient ..... 2 

2. Mediaeval ..... 7 

3. Modern n 

II. THE OLYMPIC GAMES : 

Section I. Ancient ..... 23 

2. Modern ..... 36 

III. INTERNATIONAL ATHLETICS: 

Section I. Europe . . . . . . 53 

2. Asia and South America . . . 57 

3. The British Dominions ... 59 

4. The United States of America . . 61 

IV. GENERAL PRINCIPLES .... . . 70 

V. TRAINING AND EQUIPMENT : 

Section r. Training . . . . . 85 

2. Tracks and Impedimenta m 

3. Personal Equipment . . . 122 

VI. SPRINTING : 

Section I. Introduction . . . . .130 

2. The Start . . . . .139 

3. Striding 148 

4. The Finish 154 

5. Training 156 

6; The 220 Yards . . . .158 

VII. MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING : 

Section r. General Principles . . . .162 

2. The Quarter-mile .... 179 

3. The Half-mile . . . .184 

4. The 1500 Metres and the Mile . .189 



x CONTENTS 

CHAPTER PAGE 

VIII. DISTANCE RACES: 

Section i. Long-distance Running . . .193 

2. The Marathon .... 202 

3. Cross-country .... 206 

4. Steeplechase . . . .210 

IX. HURDLING: 

Section i; 120 Yards Hurdles . . . 215 

2. 220 Yards Hurdles .... 230 

3; 440 Yards Hurdles . . . .232 

X. JUMPING : 

Section i. Long Jump . . . . .234 
la. Standing Long Jump . . . 246 

2. Hop, Step and Jump . . . 2^7 

3. The High Jump, by C. T. Van Geyzel 250 
3<*. Standing High Jump . , .261 

4. Pole Vault 262 

XL THROWING, by M. C. Nokes : 

Section I. General Considerations . . .271 

2. Shot Putt . . , . . .278 

3. Throwing the Hammer . . . 281 

4. Throwing the Discus . . .285 

5. Throwing the Javelin . . .289 

XII. WALKING ....... 293 

XIII. RELAY RACING ....... 296 

XIV. TUC-OF-WAR 305 

XV. ATHLETICS FOR WOMEN AND BOYS : 

Section i. Athletics for Women . . 307 

2. Athletics for Boys . . . .317 

RECORDS AND STATISTICS . . . . 3^5 
INDEX 363 

PLATE 

FOUR GREAT EMPIRE HURDLERS .... Frontispiece 
From a photograph by " Sport and General " 



CHAPTER 1 

THE HISTORY OF ATHLETICS 

ONE of the primary instincts of man is to play; 
and historians and sociologists early seek out and 
observe among the customs of peoples their 
methods of recreation, from which in many cases may 
be understood much of their psychology and culture. 
Games, in fact, not only mould national character, which 
is the raison <T$tre for their prominence in modern school 
curricula ; they reflect it. Among primitive peoples 
there exist scant records of the games in which they 
indulged.; but one finds that the pursuit of athletics 
in olden days was closely allied with either religion or 
military exercises, and it seems probable that sports were 
of a distinctly utilitarian nature. 

It is not irrational to presume, however, that besides 
exercises of a martial order, men cultivated from the 
earliest times the natural sports of running, leaping and 
throwing, wrestling and fighting, often with no ulterior 
object, unless it were, perhaps, a desire for physical 
fitness or for the favour of a maid. Indeed, the simple 
delight of a man in his own strength and the popular 
love of mankind for the sight of physical combat may be 
considered sufficient reason for the practice of games, 
even among the races of antiquity. And since it was 
early found possible to divert the human passion for 
recreation into the profitable channels of militarism, it 
is not surprising that their practice was encouraged by 
those responsible for good government. 



ATHLETICS 

Section I. Ancient 

The earliest extant records relate to the Tailtean 
Games, founded in Ireland about 3000 B.C. by Luguid 
of the Strong Arm in memory of his beautiful foster- 
mother, the Queen Tailte ; and one may observe in 
passing that these games were successfully revived in 
1924. In the absence of authoritative descriptions, one 
can only conjecture that the contests were of a simple 
character, designed to foster the warlike spirit of those 
dark and distant days ; probably hunting, running, 
wrestling and spear-throwing were the principal sports 
practised by the ancient Hibernians. 

Possessing less antiquity but possibly more authen- 
ticity than these somewhat legendary games are the 
sports of Egypt and of Asia, although according to 
Herodotus only one portion of Egypt subscribed to 
athletic exercises. This was at Chemnis, where there 
was a temple of Perseus, who was said to have instituted 
public games in his honour after the manner of the 
Greeks. The popularity of games in the Near East is, 
perhaps, evidenced by the frequent references thereto in 
the Old Testament, both Isaiah and Jeremiah employing 
athletic similes in their writings with great effect. To 
the Lydians are attributed the majority of games, such 
as dice and ball ; and coming to later times there are 
records of athletic games about A.D. 600 forming part 
of the annual fair of Okad, in Arabia. The interest 
of these ancient games is not in any case particular ; 
they are significant as being probably the prototype of 
the athletic exercises of ancient Greece, which culminated 
in the Olympic Games. 

The public games of Greece consisted in athletic 
contests and carnivals, which generally formed part of a 
religious observance. Their influence upon the national 
character and upon the development of art and literature 
can scarcely be exaggerated. Not only was it deemed 
fitting that the noblest youths should be trained to 



HISTORY OF ATHLETICS ANCIENT 

compete, but the brilliance of the sculptor and the poet 
was also employed to commemorate in stone or verse 
the physical and intellectual beauty of the contestants. 
Moreover, as will be more fully explained in a later 
chapter, these games became a focus in the national life, 
providing a common meeting-place for every member of 
the Greek race, and affording annual periods of peace 
and security. 

The earliest games in Greece of which there is any 
trustworthy record are those held at the funeral of 
Patroclus, described in the 23rd Book of the Iliad. 
Probably dating back to noo B.C., they testify quite 
definitely to the intimate connection of early games with 
religion ; and they reveal the already definite nature of 
the programme, which included foot and chariot-racing, 
boxing, wrestling and weight-putting. 

The subsequent history of the games is obscure until 
about 884 B.C., when the games at Olympia, in the plain 
of Elis, were reorganised. Thucydides (v. 59) attributes 
their restoration to Iphitus, the chronicle running that 
on inquiry of the oracle that monarch was advised to 
restore the games in order to stamp out the dissensions 
by which the country was then torn. In the fulfilment 
of the oracle's command the Eleians were strongly sup- 
ported by the Spartans, and there is some reason to 
suppose that the institution of the sacred truce during 
the period of the Olympic Games was inspired by the 
great Spartan lawgiver, Lycurgus. Whether this be 
so or not, Lycurgus included games in his political 
system, and even provided athletic contests for the 
young women of Sparta. 

In 776 B.C. the Eleians named the games after 
Corcebus, winner in the foot-race, which was 192 yards 
long ; and thenceforward the victor in this event gave 
his name to the Olympiad. 

Participation in the games was confined to males of 
Hellenic descent who were under the age of thirty-five ; 
and women were forbidden even as spectators. It is 

3 



ATHLETICS 

true that at Olympia women were permitted to own 
teams of chariot horses ; but all other participation was 
denied them, except in the case of the special games in 
honour of Hera, in which the Eleian virgins contended. 
On the other hand, the Spartans encouraged athletic 
contests for maidens ; but unfortunately the result was 
an increased laxity of manners and morals. 

In the course of time the games considerably extended 
their scope, and competitors ultimately came from all 
the provinces of Greece, even from Cyrene and Mar- 
seilles. The local festival thus became converted into a 
bond of union for all the Hellenic race, and attained an 
importance sufficient to sustain it until abolished by 
Theodosius in the year A.D. 394. 

A more complete description of the games is deferred 
to a later chapter, and it is sufficient here to mention 
the idealism which underlay the Greek conception of 
athletics, and which so largely accounts for their signi- 
ficance in the development of the character and culture 
of that race, and to indicate the forms of sport which 
they pursued, as leading up to more modern times. 

Despite the caustic comments of men like Euripides 
and Thucydides, who rightly perceived the folly of 
exaggerating the importance of victory in the games a 
habit to which the later Greeks of all classes were un- 
fortunately prone, even as are modern athletic " fans " 
there was a profound truth underlying the idea that 
" the body of man has a glory as well as his intellect 
and spirit ; that body and mind should alike be dis- 
ciplined ; and that it is by the harmonious discipline of 
both that men best honour Zeus." Not only do they 
honour Zeus by self-discipline, they learn also the right 
to be free and to rule. Upon this ideal of the perfect 
man was raised another, that of the free self-governing 
community ; and thus the Greeks employed games to 
advance their culture and their polity. 

For the early Olympiads the dromos y or one lap of 
the stadium, a distance of 192 yards, was the only foot- 

4 



HISTORY OF ATHLETICS ANCIENT 

race. It was supplemented in the Fourteenth Olympiad 
by the diaulos, or two laps ; and in the Fifteenth by the 
dolichoS) about 2f miles. Wrestling was introduced in 
the Eighteenth Olympiad, and the pentathlon also, 
which consisted of leaping, discus and javelin-throwing, 
running and wrestling. In boxing, the use of the 
castes, or leather thong bound round the fist, marked the 
chief difference from modern practice ; and even this 
form of attack was prohibited in the chief event of all, 
the pankration> a combination of boxing and wrestling. 
The chariot-race, which became so prominent a feature 
of the later Roman displays, originated in the Twenty- 
third Olympiad, and was held in the hippodrome. And 
there were also athletic contests of the same variety for 
boys. 

Although the Olympic Games were the oldest and 
most important athletic contests in ancient Greece, 
they were not unrivalled in other parts of the peninsula. 
The Pythian Games, held every fourth year at Delphi 
in honour of Apollo, date at least from the year 527 B.C. 
The Nemean Games, in honour of Zeus, originated in 
516 B.C. and were biennial, as were also the Isthmian 
Games, held on the Isthmus of Corinth, and dating 
from 523 B.C. The importance of the last is evidenced 
by the law of Solon, which awarded 100 drachmae to 
every Athenian victor ; and their continued popularity in 
Christian times is demonstrated by the frequent similes 
of St. Paul, notably the famous description of training 
and racing in i Cor. ix. 24-27, which was probably 
written from Ephesus about A.D. 57. And as throwing 
further light on the scrupulously fair conduct of the 
games, one may cite the passage in 2 Tim. ii. 5, " If a 
man also strive for masteries, yet is he not crowned, except 
he strive lawfully. " 

One must not omit to mention the oldest Athenian 
festival, the Panathenaea. Originally a religious cele- 
bration in honour of Athene, it was extended and 
ennobled by the conception of Theseus, who, having 

5 



ATHLETICS 

effected the civil union of Attica, judged that only by 
a religious union of all the peoples who regarded them- 
selves as under the protection of Athene could this 
homogeneity be cemented. Subsequently, Peisistratus 
made considerable alterations ; the festival was made 
quadrennial in order to rival the Olympiads ; and 
peculiar contests were arranged. The most interesting 
to the athlete was the Lampadedromia, or torch-race at 
night, the precursor of the modern relay race, whose 
praise is justly sung in a well-known line in ^Eschylus, 
" The first is the victor, even though he be last in the 
running." It is understood- that it is intended to revive 
this festival in 1930. 

Curiously enough, the Ludi Publici of the Romans 
bear little relation to athletic contests such as form the 
subject of this book, and they compare most unfavourably 
with those of the Greeks. The Roman populace was 
fed upon two things, .bread and the circus ; and it was 
the thrill of the chariot-race and its accompanying wagers, 
the love of prodigal display, and later the sensuality 
attached to the gladiatorial and other combats, which 
pandered to the degraded taste of the crowd. 

One has only to read the pages of Gibbon (Decline and 
Fall of the Roman Empire, ii. 333 ; iii. 44) to appreciate 
their attitude. He points out (iii. 44) the difference in 
the games of antiquity. " The most eminent of the 
Greeks were actors, the Romans were merely spectators." 
Professional charioteers, professional athletes, took the 
place of the high-born competitors of Greece. True, 
there had been professionals in Greece as early as the 
fifth century B.C., recruited from the lower orders and 
pursuing athletics as a means of livelihood ; and this 
complete abandonment, with its deleterious effect upon 
the mind, had been not unreasonably attacked by 
Xenophanes and by Euripides in a fragment of the 
AutolycuS) which approximates in meaning to Kipling's 
" muddied oafs and flannelled fools," But what the 
Greeks admitted to be regrettable the Romans un- 

6 



HISTORY OF ATHLETICS MEDIAEVAL 

fortunately admired as an ideal ; and the gladiator was 
as a demi-god. 

Among the Romans, athletic contests doubtless took 
place from the earliest times. At one period the habit 
of swimming, running, riding and javelin-throwing was 
practised by the Roman youth on the Field of Mars ; 
and both the Actian Games, founded 28 B.C., and held 
at Rome every four years, and the Imperial Games at 
Naples, founded to commemorate the visit of Augustus 
in A.D. 14, were celebrated for a time in the same 
fashion as the Olympic Games. The Secular Games, 
contested every hundred years, followed similar lines ; 
but apart from efforts such as those of Augustus 
to keep women away from the brutal boxing matches 
by ordinance, little was done to prevent the gradual 
lowering of the public taste. Wrestling, so popular 
among the Greeks, was rare ; the introduction of Greek 
professional runners, which according to Livy occurred 
about 1 86 B.C., was ultimately to provide the coup de grace 
to pure athletics in Rome. Their popularity increased 
after the institution of the Actian Games, and their 
guilds ranked above those of the gladiators ; but the 
profession was derogatory to a Roman, and ere long the 
sport sank into the slough of general athletic degeneracy. 

Section 2. Medieval 

Turning to Western Europe, it is perhaps not sur- 
prising to find, among the relatively uncivilised peoples 
of Gaul and Britain, that early athletic contests, even as 
had been the case in Greece, were directed mainly 
towards practical ends. Feats of arms, jousts and 
tournaments, archery and exercises with the sword and 
rapier, formed the principal recreations, as distinct from 
the chase, in mediaeval times. 

No doubt the original Celtic inhabitants of Britain 
were an athletic race, and reference has already been 
made to the Tailtean Games, which were maintained in 

7 



ATHLETICS 

Ireland for many centuries. Although these and other 
similar games disappeared under the stress of perpetual 
civil war, the Irish ever remained fond of field sports, 
and since the revival of organised athletics in the nine- 
teenth century their representatives have competed with 
remarkable success, both in Britain and America. The 
Gaelic people also delighted in feats of strength and 
skill, and the Highland Games are of considerable 
antiquity. 

In Central Europe the Teutons also showed partiality 
for games, and mediaeval literature is full of descriptions 
of athletic prowess. The well-known story in the 
Nibelungenlied (circa A.D. 1200, see Adventure 7, lines 
1839 ff.) of how Siegfried, by means of his invisible 
mantle, aided King Gunther to win Queen Brunhilde 
for his bride, relates that the queen imposed three trials 
of strength upon each suitor, death being the penalty for 
defeat by her in any of the contests. The three tests, 
to give them their modern nomenclature, were throwing 
the javelin, putting the weight and long jumping ; and 
only Siegfried's super-excellence defeated this Amazonian 
maid, who showed her strength on her wedding night 
by trussing her husband and suspending him from a 
nail ! 

This saga has an additional interest, inasmuch as it 
typifies the mediaeval tendency to record the athletic 
achievements of princes and nobility and to omit refer- 
ence to those of the people. This reverence for the skill 
of kings and knights occasions difficulty to the modern 
historian who seeks to trace the evolution of athletics ; 
not only are the records rare, but they not infrequently 
bear the mark of flattering hyperbole. Thus, for 
example, the statement of Jusserand that Guillaume le 
Marshal, a French knight of the thirteenth century, 
held the world's record for putting the weight, and 
that of Peacham that Achmet III, Sultan of Turkey 
about A.D. 1700, held the record for throwing the 
discus, are of interest as indicating the practice of the 

8 



HISTORY OF ATHLETICS MEDIAEVAL 

event rather than of utility as authentic records ; whilst 
the description of Henry V of England, that he " was 
so swift a runner that he and two of his lords, without 
bow or other engine, would take a wild buck in a large 
park," would appear to be a considerable exaggeration of 
the prowess even of that warrior king ! 

Having uttered this warning against treating the 
chronicles without due reserve, one turns to the recrea- 
tions of Norman England and finds that the chase and 
the tournament were the principal diversions of the 
nobility, and that little is recorded of the sports of the 
common folk, save archery. Wrestling was certainly 
the national pastime in the time of John, and again 
under Henry VII ; and at another period Edward III 
had to prohibit weight-putting by statute, so seriously 
did it interfere with the practice of archery. The 
sister sport, hammer-throwing or, as it was then 
called, " casting the barre " continued to be popular ; 
and Henry VIII is said to have been a world's record- 
holder at this event. Under so athletic a monarch he 
was proficient in throwing the javelin, introduced tennis 
into England, and did he not wrestle with and un- 
diplomatically throw Francis I at the Field of the Cloth 
of Gold ? quite an athletic revival occurred ; and a 
school of thought arose which advocated athletics, in- 
cluding running, as a valuable adjunct to education. 

This was the case not only in England, but also on 
the Continent. For example, Rabelais in his great 
classic (Livre I, ch. 23), in describing the course of 
instruction laid down for the youthful Gargantua, insists 
upon the benefit to be derived from physical culture, and 
makes his hero fence, tilt, hunt, ride, swim, climb, play 
tennis and football, run, leap so as to clear a ditch or 
hedge, as being useful in war, throw the hammer, weight, 
javelin and spear, regardless of the difficulty of teaching 
him proficiency in such a diversity of sports. And 250 
years later, in 1762, another famous French educa- 
tionalist, Jean Jacques Rousseau, devotes a chapter in 

9 



ATHLETICS 

the second book of his Emile to the " Utilit de la 
course," and encourages indolent children to race for 
sweet cakes. 

At an earlier time running had been a popular pleasure 
with monarchs and nobles, and the exploits of Henry V 
have been noted. Strutt records in his Sports and Pastimes 
of the People of England that the young men of good 
family were taught running, leaping and wrestling, 
besides the less plebeian joust ; and Shakespeare has 
various allusions to running and to the Olympic Games 
(see, e.g., 3 Henry F7, 2, iii.). 

In the sixteenth century a series of foot-races was 
substituted for the great football match played annually 
at Chester between the Shoemakers and the Drapers ; 
and although during the Elizabethan age only the com- 
mon people seemed keen on sports, the nobility showing 
a preference for pageants, yet in the following era the 
Stuart kings were warm patrons of athletic games of all 
kinds. James I, indeed, as was not uncommon with him, 
wrote a treatise (Basilikon Doron) on the subject for 
his son, in which he recommended him to practise 
" running, leaping, wrestling, fencing, dancing and 
playing at the catch or tennise, archerie, palle-malle, and 
such-like other fair and pleasant field games. " And as 
an off-set to the contemporary statutes against gaming, 
the same monarch caused the so-called Book of Sports 
to be read in churches, whereby leaping and vaulting 
on Sunday after service were permitted. 

Both Pepys and Macaulay mention races for wagers 
under Charles II, and during the eighteenth and nine- 
teenth centuries professional matches and races for 
wagers were prevalent in England. Amateur contests 
then began to seize the imagination of all ranks of 
society, in origin undoubtedly merely an imitation of 
the professional matches. Nevertheless, it is probably 
due to them that in the middle of the nineteenth 
century there was a renaissance of amateur athletics 
throughout the country, which, preceding as it did all 

10 



HISTORY OF ATHLETICS MODERN 

other European athletic movements, gave Great Britain 
that pre-eminence in athletics which no country, with 
the possible exception of America, was capable of 
challenging until the institution of the modern Olympic 
Games. Since the dawn of the twentieth century, 
athletic sports, always pursued but never previously 
so generally popular, have been adopted with ever- 
increasing enthusiasm upon the continent of Europe ; 
and the result to-day is the disappearance of British 
supremacy, but not, as some Jeremiahs pretend, de- 
cadence and loss of all prestige. British sportsmanship 
is recognised as paramount ; and England is still re- 
garded, even by the latest recruits to organised athletics 
the German people as " Das Mutterland des Sports." 



Section 3. Modern 

About 1812 the R.M.C. at Sandhurst inaugurated 
regular athletic sports, and some thirty years later the 
R.M.A. Woolwich, Eton, Harrow, Rugby and Shrews- 
bury followed the example. Not until 1850 did Exeter 
College, Oxford, hold the first organised sports meeting 
at the Universities, a successful venture subsequently 
adoped by the other colleges. Cambridge founded 
their University sports in 1857, and Oxford three years 
later. Thus by 1860 athletic meetings had become a 
regular feature of school and college life, and during 
a single decade amateur athletics had received an impetus 
from which they never looked back. 

In 1864 the first Oxford v. Cambridge Sports took 
place at Oxford, the programme consisting of eight 
events, of which each side won four ; and in 1867 the 
venue was transferred to London, where it has since 
remained. In the same year (1864) the Civil Service 
inaugurated their annual meeting; and in 1863 a 
group of business men engaged in the neighbourhood 
of Mincing Lane, London, founded a club which they 

ii 



named after that commercial centre, and which, three 
years later, took the title of the London Athletic Club. 

In 1866, when athletics had become generally 
popular, the Amateur Athletic Club was formed in 
London for " gentlemen amateurs," most of its members 
being old University men. It promptly instituted a 
championship meeting ; but in its subsequent rivalry 
with the L.A.C., the senior club proved the favourite, 
and apart from this annual championship meeting and 
the staging of the 'Varsity sports at its headquarters at 
Lillie Bridge (opened 1868), the A.A.C. did not feature 
very prominently in the sport after its early years of 
activity. 

Indeed, so much did it decline, and so unpopular was 
the date of the championship meeting among the 
majority of athletes and particularly members of the 
L.A.C., that in 1879 ^ e L.A.C. also promoted a 
championship meeting, but in the summer. The A.A.C. 
meeting was held in the spring on the Monday follow- 
ing the Inter-'Varsity sports, and obviously conferred 
advantages upon the University men ; the summer 
meeting was of like benefit to other athletes whose 
training commenced later. The existence of two cham- 
pionship meetings, however, without any overriding 
authority, constituted an impasse ; and in order to 
determine this difficulty, and if possible create a govern- 
ing body which should control the sport throughout 
the country, a conference was held at Oxford on the 
24th April 1880. At the instigation of several Oxford 
men, among whom were B. R. Wise, C. N. Jackson and 
M. Shearman (now Sir Montague Shearman), this 
meeting was convened by the Presidents of the O.U.A.C. 
and C.U.A.C. jointly, and representatives of the 
Northern A.A.A., the Midland A.A.A. and all the 
Southern clubs were invited to attend. 

As a result of their deliberations, the Amateur Athletic 
Association was founded and given jurisdiction over all 
British athletic sports. The organisation of an annual 

12 



HISTORY OF ATHLETICS MODERN 

championship meeting was confided to it, and it was 
decided that henceforth this meeting should be held in 
the summer, in the North, Midlands and South in 
rotation. Subsequently, the venue became fixed by 
custom in London, the other districts receiving financial 
compensation for their renunciation, every third year, 
of the right to hold the championships ; and the date 
was stabilised at the first Friday and Saturday in July. 
The championships were declared open to all who had 
never competed for money and who could subscribe to 
the definition of an amateur laid down by the newly 
incorporated Association. 

The drafting of a constitution, the framing of laws 
and rules for competition, were among the first duties 
of the Association, which also formulated regulations 
to govern prize values, handicaps, records . and club 
membership, most of which have, of course, been 
altered from time to time to accord with changed con- 
ditions. Very extensive powers were entrusted to the 
Association, which was definitely intended to occupy a 
predominant position ; and not only individuals, but 
also clubs, were made subject to its punitive as well as 
its protective measures. It was determined that all 
athletic meetings should be held under the laws of the 
Association, and so advertised ; and for the protection 
of the athlete it was decided that clubs ought to be 
affiliated to the Association, and that open meetings, 
if promoted by non-affiliated clubs, must be registered 
with the Association by payment of a fee. Athletes 
who competed at unregistered meetings were liable to 
suspension, and clubs guilty of malpractices were to be 
similarly penalised ; and drastic as these and other 
measures may appear to be, it must be remembered that 
the evil of veiled professionalism was very real in the 
early history of amateur athletics, and that even to-day, 
pettifogging though many of the regulations are, the 
dangers which they seek to avert are by no means 
eliminated. 

13 



ATHLETICS 

Another problem was shortly to confront adherents 
to the sport, and that was connected with the manage- 
ment of cycling events. Cycling was and is governed 
by the National Cyclists' Union ; and in the days when 
its popularity was greater than at present it was customary 
to include cycle races in the programme of athletic 
sports meetings, when their management was handed 
over to the promoting club. Differences arose about 
the rules, and came to a head in 1885. Fortunately, a 
round-table conference secured their settlement ; an 
alliance was formed between the two bodies, and it was 
decided that cycling races should be held under N.C.U. 
rules and running races under those of the A.A.A. 

With the development of the athletic movement the 
burden of government became too heavy for one central 
body to bear, and decentralisation was effected. The 
governing body divided itself into three. The North 
and Midlands were formed into separate associations, 
controlling athletics in their districts ; whilst athletics 
in the South were placed under the direction of the 
Southern Committee of the A.A.A. The management 
of the Association was vested in the General Committee, 
which is composed of representatives of these three 
bodies and meets at least twice a year to discuss general 
matters of policy affecting the whole country. In 
particular the General Committee, through its several 
sub-committees, controls finance, hears appeals, sus- 
pends clubs or individuals, makes and interprets laws, 
passes records, controls the championships and inter- 
national matches, and selects national teams. The 
three branches sitting separately legislate and administer 
for their respective districts. 

The process of decentralisation has been carried a 
step further since the Great War in the organisation 
and growth of the county movement. The work of the 
District Associations, especially in the South, had 
become so vast that they were becoming moribund 
under the strain. In order to relieve the central bodies 



HISTORY OF ATHLETICS MODERN 

of choking matters of detail and leave them free to 
elaborate a wide and constructive policy the creation of 
County A.A. Associations was obviously necessary. 

These Associations were intended to promote their 
own county championships ; if possible to hold inter- 
county contests ; to encourage local athletics ; and to 
administrate generally within their boundaries. Un- 
fortunately, up to the present the scheme has appealed 
only to the South and Midlands, where it has worked 
with much success ; and those districts only have 
supported the Inter-County Relay and Team Cham- 
pionships, held annually in London since 1925. On 
account of the somewhat unwieldy programme, the 
predominance of some three or four county teams, and 
the problem of finance, this meeting cannot at present 
be considered entirely satisfactory. In all probability 
it will soon give place either to inter-county cham- 
pionships on a league principle or to championships 
within the three districts. 

This, however, is to advance too rapidly, and it is 
necessary to revert to the nineteenth century in order 
properly to trace the general progress of athletics in 
England. A great number of clubs sprang up during 
the latter half of the century, among which the most 
prominent were the L.A.C., whose meetings were 
perhaps the most important outside the championships ; 
the Polytechnic Harriers, who have done so. much for 
Marathon running in England ; and the Birchfield 
Harriers, whose great work in the Midlands has just 
been crowned by the opening of their new cinder track 
in Birmingham. It was in 1876 that the L.A.C. first 
used the Stamford Bridge ground, which in those days 
possessed a 250 yards straight, but was, as now, a 
quarter-mile in circumference, in contradistinction to 
the A.A.C. ground at Lillie Bridge, which was a third 
of a mile long. The old Queen's Club and the two 
'Varsity tracks were also of this length. The Poly- 
technic Harriers, besides holding a Marathon annually 

15 



ATHLETICS 

since 1909, have staged the principal inter-club match 
of the year, the Kinnaird Trophy Competition, for which 
some ten or twelve Metropolitan clubs enter ; and this 
club plays a considerable r6le in cross-country matches. 
Three other clubs of long standing which are perhaps 
better known in that sphere than on the track are the 
Thames Hare and Hounds, a pioneer in paper-chasing, 
the Blackheath Harriers, and the South London Harriers ; 
and there are hundreds of other clubs of varying renown 
which cannot be mentioned through lack of space. 

It is proper to indicate, however, the work of the 
L.A.C. in another branch of athletics, namely among 
schoolboys. The L.A.C. for long encouraged the sport 
among boys, particularly from the public schools, and 
even during the years of the Great War this club nobly 
continued to hold its annual Public Schools Sports 
Meeting. The meeting was inaugurated in 1890 with a 
440 yards race ; in 1 897 it was properly established with 
a programme of eight events 100, 440, 880, mile, 
high and long jumps, 120 yards hurdles, three-quarter 
mile steeplechase, to which were added later a mile 
walk and a pole jump, and two junior events. 

This good work has since been supplemented by the 
Achilles Club, founded in 1920 and composed entirely 
of past and present Oxford and Cambridge athletes. 
This club, to which relay racing ever had a great appeal, 
and which may be regarded as the pioneer of that form 
of athletics on a large scale in England, introduced 
public school relay races between mixed teams of past 
and present public school boys. It also began a system 
of demonstration matches, usually on the handicap 
relay principle, at the schools themselves, a policy now 
followed by the L.A.C. There can be little doubt that 
such methods of instruction, inculcating both the team 
spirit and good style, will ultimately prove beneficial 
to British athletics ; and they are symptomatic of the 
educative work that is now being almost universally 
attempted. 

16 



HISTORY OF ATHLETICS MODERN 

America was for long in the van with its inter- 
scholastic meetings, to which further reference will be 
made in another chapter ; France established a post- 
War Ministry of Sport; and in England in 1925 a 
Schools Athletic Association was formed and held 
Inter-County Schoolboy Championships in London, in 
which over twenty counties competed. Moreover, the 
counties themselves, and great bodies like the Middle- 
sex Schools Association, arrange matches and com- 
petitions for boys outside the great public schools, 
which, of course, have their own annual sports and in 
many cases an inter-school match as well ; and provided 
overstrain and publicity are avoided these movements 
deserve high praise. The spread of physical culture and 
teaching of athletic sports among children has become 
well-nigh universal, and the large number of Gymnasia 
fttr Leibesubung in Germany, the Sokols in Czecho- 
slovakia, the Swedish Schoolboys Athletic week, and, 
among University students, the International Students 
Games, held in conjunction with the C.I.E. Congress, 
testify to the vigour of the movement. 

Leaving discussion of the modern Olympic Games to 
another chapter, merely noting their revival in 1896 and 
indicating that they have exercised a most profound 
influence upon the universal development of athletics, 
particularly since the vintage year, 1908, attention may 
be drawn to the further progress of athletics in England 
in spheres other than educational. For many years the 
A.A.A. had preserved a rather narrow championship 
programme, and it was partly through the pressure of 
the English Field Events Association (founded 1910) 
that the governing body was ultimately persuaded in 
1914 to include the javelin, discus, hop, step and jump, 
and the 440 yards hurdles. This delay in encouraging 
these particular field events, together with the fact that 
none of them, nor the hammer since 1921, is practised 
at the Universities, may be borne in mind when contrast- 
ing British standards with those of the Americans and 
B 17 



ATHLETICS 

other Europeans ; but it does not afford a conclusive 
explanation of British inferiority, which is equally 
evident in the pole and long jumps and in the weight, 
all held since 1866. 

During this period was introduced the system of 
international matches with which Europe is now almost 
overrun. Not only did Norway, Sweden and Denmark 
commence a Landskamp, held annually since 1917 at 
Oslo, Stockholm and Copenhagen in rotation, but 
France engaged in matches with Belgium and Sweden, 
and in Great Britain a Triangular International was 
begun between England, Scotland and Ireland in 
1914, and continued annually after the War, England 
proving successful on the majority of occasions. 

Except in the Services, athletics were in abeyance in 
Europe during the period 1914-19, but in America 
it was found possible to continue the Amateur Cham- 
pionships without intermission, although the Inter- 
collegiate Championships were abandoned in 1917. 

In post- War England, where athletics were recom- 
menced in the summer of 1919, one of the most signifi- 
cant movements came from the Universities. The 
foundation of the Achilles Club marked the re-entry of 
Oxford and Cambridge athletes in large numbers in 
open competition, both at home and abroad, and at the 
two Universities many innovations occurred. The 
inter-college system of sports meetings, run on the 
league basis at Cambridge and on a combination of 
league and knock-out bases at Oxford, was revitalised, and 
inter-college relays were developed. The Oxford- 
Cambridge relay races were founded and the Inter- 
'Varsity programme revised. The ten events which 
had stood since 1903, namely 100, 440, 880, mile, 3 
miles, high hurdles, high and long jumps, weight and 
hammer, were changed, the hammer going out and the 
pole jump and 220 yards low hurdles coming in. And, 
perhaps as a sequel to the transference of Anglo-American 
matches from Queen's Club to Stamford Bridge, the 

18 



HISTORY OF ATHLETICS MODERN 

'Varsity Sports also moved there in 1929, the Queen's 
track, which had been used since 1888, being converted 
into tennis courts. 

The other Universities were not far behind. In 1919 
the Inter-'Varsity Athletic Board was constituted with 
the object of advancing all games among its members, 
and comprised all the English and Welsh Universities 
except Oxford and Cambridge. Annual track and 
field championships were inaugurated. Meetings are 
now held with other bodies, and at least one Uni- 
versity Leeds has laid out a superb ground. In 
1925 the Scottish Universities followed the lead, and 
the Atalanta Club was established on lines similar to 
the Achilles. 

The second important movement for the experiment 
of holding English Championships in 1922 and its 
abandonment after three years' trial can be passed over 
was among the counties ; but as the origin and growth 
of this movement has already been described, one can 
pass rapidly on to the third feature of recent athletic 
development, which is the increased interest in relay 
and inter-club competition. 

Relay racing was introduced to this country from 
America ; but although a one mile medley was in- 
cluded in the A. A. A. Championships from 1911 on- 
wards, it was only after the Great War that relays 
attained a popularity in England commensurate with 
that pnjoyed in the United States. In 1 920, immediately 
after the Olympic Games at Antwerp, those two great 
Oxford and Cambridge athletes, Bevil Rudd and Pro- 
fessor Philip Baker, inaugurated the Achilles Club 
by staging at Queen's Club, London, the greatest 
international relay match ever seen between the United 
States Olympic Team and the combined teams of the 
British Empire. At that first meeting the field events 
were individual ; subsequently they were conducted on 
the team principle as well, by Baking the aggregate 
performance of the several men in each team. Before 



ATHLETICS 

an overflowing crowd, which has never "* since lost its 
love for good relay racing, a thrilling encounter resulted 
in a tie. So popular was the venture, and so important 
and significant, that in 1924 it was adopted by the 
A.A.A. and held at Stamford Bridge. On that occasion 
the Americans obtained an overwhelming success by 
ii events to 3 ; on the third occasion (1928), before 
41,000 people, they won a very great match by 8 points 
to 6. 

With such a brilliant commencement and con- 
tinuance, interest in relay racing has heightened ever 
since the War, and no athletic meeting is complete 
without one or two relay events. In 1920 were in- 
augurated the Oxford-Cambridge relay races, held every 
December at each University in turn; in 1925 the 
Inter-County Relay Meeting was begun; in 1927 the 
A.A.A. sensibly converted their Relay Championship 
into one consisting of four quarter-miles, and added a 
sprint relay, 4 by no yards; and many clubs, par- 
ticularly the Achilles, conduct their matches largely on 
the relay system. The efforts of the L.A.C., Poly- 
technic Harriers and Achilles Club to mention perhaps 
the three chief innovators to encourage and develop 
inter-club matches, whether on Saturdays or on mid- 
week evenings, have been attended with marked suc- 
cess, especially in the South of England ; and provided 
individual athletes are not surfeited, nothing but good 
ought to accrue to the game through this wave of team 
competition. 

One result of the cult of inter-club matches has been 
the payment of more attention to the needs of the less 
prominent performer. More and more is the value of 
the scratch race being appreciated ; and the open handi- 
cap, with its large entry and rather sordid commercialism, 
is gradually being condemned. The introduction of 
" Graded Races," in which athletes are divided into 
classes according to ability, all those belonging to one 
class competing against each other in level events, has 

20 



HISTORY OF ATHLETICS MODERN 

proved successful and attractive in this country; and 
whilst one realises the utility of the short limit handicap, 
one is convinced that in the extension of the graded race 
will be found the real road towards creating a higher 
standard of general athletics among the rank and file. 
The evidence from Continental countries, where big 
handicap races are almost unknown, substantiates this 
opinion. 

Yet another feature of post- War athletics has been the 
closer relationship with foreign athletes. They have 
attended the A.A.A. Championships in greater numbers 
and with even more signal success, conspicuous among 
them being the German contingents since 1926 ; whilst 
English teams and individuals have competed with 
much pleasure and gained some victories throughout 
Europe. These contests are evidence of the great 
advance upon the Continent in the practice of athletics. 
Fuller consideration of this subject is, however, reserved 
for another chapter. 

In conclusion, something should be said about 
women's athletics. The attitude of the Greeks has been 
indicated, and the general disapproval of feminine 
participation in athletic contests endured until women's 
emancipation in the twentieth century. Before the War 
women's colleges in America permitted and encouraged 
track and field athletics, but it was only during the War 
that European women began to take up athletics 
seriously. 

Since 1919 the movement has progressed with 
startling rapidity, and has achieved vogue and popu- 
larity. In England, particularly in and around London, 
women's clubs have been founded and flourish. The 
records made by English girls were soon assailed by 
Czech, Swedish, French, Belgian and now German 
women ; and even Japan has added to the number who 
compete in international games. Championships and 
Internationals take place annually ; in 1925 a triangular 
match was held in London between teams representing 

21 



ATHLETICS 

Canada, Czechoslovakia and Great Britain ; and to- 
wards the end of the same year the Second Women's 
(Olympiad was held at Stockholm, the first having been 
at Monte Carlo in 1922. In 1928, to the regret of 
many shrewd judges and lovers of athletics, the women's 
events, reduced in number, were included in the pro- 
gramme of the Olympic Games at Amsterdam, Great 
Britain abstaining ; and despite much opposition, their 
inclusion, subject to alteration in the events to be 
contested, is confirmed for the games of 1932. 



CHAPTER II 

THE OLYMPIC GAMES 

Section I. Ancient 

THE contemplation of the manners and customs 
of ancient and mediaeval peoples is among the 
most fascinating as well as the most useful of 
occupations. The historian is able to trace the evolu- 
tion of man's life from the nomadic tribe to the highly 
organised twentieth-century state, and to show that the 
primitive existence was the germ, in thought and action, 
of the modern complex nation. Any great movement, 
whether in thought, art, politics or religion, can be 
traced back to a similar but usually less highly developed 
system in a previous age ; and it is, therefore, not sur- 
prising to discover that games, which occupy so promi- 
nent almost too prominent a position in modern life, 
held a similar place in the existence of ancient com- 
munities. 

Games, indeed, as has been suggested in the first 
chapter, date from the remotest antiquity ; and it is 
almost indubitable that the Greeks, from whom so much 
of modern culture springs, adopted their athletic 
exercises from the more ancient civilisations of Asia. 
That they subsequently advanced these games to a 
high pitch of efficiency and excellence was only to be 
expected from a people whose genius in so many spheres 
has excited the admiration and emulation of all those 
who have succeeded thejn ; and it is with the Olympic 
Games of Greece that this practice of physical culture 
culminated. The modern cult of athletics possesses 
marked resemblance to the enthusiastic practice of the 



ATHLETICS 

Greeks, and the modern Olympic Games, which form 
the pinnacle of athletics, have been deliberately modelled 
upon the ancient. It is therefore both fitting and 
interesting to inquire into the origin and development 
of the ancient games before turning to consideration of 
the modern. 

From early times it had been customary among the 
Greeks to hold meetings for purposes of festivity and 
social amusement, and some trial of bodily strength, 
such as a wrestling match or a foot-race, formed origi- 
nally the principal entertainment. Military exercises, 
to which the perpetual internecine feuds of the Greek 
states gave particular value, were of ordinary occurrence 
in these games ; and it was possibly their military 
associations which occasioned their introduction at 
funerals, a custom which was quite ancient even in the 
time of Homer. 

Homer shows in the Odyssey that games, which 
included not only athletic exercises but music and 
dancing as well demonstration of the imaginative 
cultural faculty of the Greeks were the ordinary 
amusement of princes ; and the description of the 
games at the Court of Alcinous indicates their practice 
a thousand years before the Christian era. They ^ere 
even then conducted in a systematic manner, and the 
office of public judge of the games was coveted as con- 
veying the degree and honour of a magistrate. More- 
over, at that time, and indeed for long afterwards, only 
men of rank participated in the games, although they 
were attended by multitudes of spectators ; and in this 
respect they resembled nothing so much as the mediaeval 
jousts of the age of chivalry. 

The most solemn and brilliant meetings were, how- 
ever, at the funerals of distinguished men. The funeral 
of Patroclus, described in the Iliad (Book xxiii.), may 
be regarded as a perfect example of the magnificence 
with which such rites were celebrated. These games 
must have been held about the year 1 100 B.C., and, as 

' 24 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES ANCIENT 

usual at that period, only men of the highest rank com- 
peted. In the foot-race, for example, the contestants 
were Ajax, Ulysses, and Antilochus, the son of Nestor ; 
in the wrestling match, Ajax and Ulysses. 

The foot-race, which appears to have been about 
half a mile, was obviously won by a most experienced 
athlete, Ulysses, who carefully allowed Ajax to set the 
pace until 200 yards from the tape. At this stage, un- 
fortunately, a suspicion rests upon the conduct of 
Pallas Athene, who apparently lent her aid to Ulysses 
by causing the weary Ajax to stumble. At all events, 
Ajax lodged a protest with the judges, swearing that 
he had been defeated by a goddess, not Ulysses ; but 
the judges overruled the objection, and the discom- 
forted Ajax, derided by the crowd, who perhaps thought 
his protest unsporting, had to be content with second 
prize a well-fed bull. Ulysses was awarded a huge 
silver urn, whilst the luckless Antilochus received a 
talent of pure gold. Even such prizes were simple in 
comparison with those awarded in the chariot-race, 
where the victor received a large vase and a beautiful 
bride endowed with all the domestic virtues, whilst the 
fifth received a double bowl ! 

The games included also boxing with the c<estus y 
wrestling, throwing the quoit (i.e. discus) and the 
javelin, archery, and fencing with the spear, and these 
details are of interest as showing at how early a date the 
events in the games were standardised. 

There are also traditions of games celebrated at Elis 
in very early times ; and Hesiod, who was contem- 
porary with Homer, refers to games at Chalcis, wherein 
he gained a prize for song ; but it does not appear from 
either of these poets that in their time any periodic 
festival was established like that which subsequently 
became so famous under the title of the Olympic Games. 
Not only are these early festivals restricted to solemn 
and usually .religious occasions, being held at funerals, 
or in celebration of some victory, or at a solemn thanks- 

25 - 



ATHLETICS 

giving to the gods, and always in the vicinity of some 
temple or sacred spot, but the rewards of the victors 
examples of which have been cited indicate a marked 
distinction from the Olympian contests, in which the 
public award of a crown of wild olive, possessing no 
intrinsic value, was the sole tribute to the victor. 

After Homer's age the memory of the games was 
almost lost through the disputes which continually 
troubled the Grecian peoples ; and it was not until the 
year 884 B.C, that their re-institution occurred. At this 
period Iphitus ascended to the throne of Elis and 
sought a remedy for the distress pervading his country. 
His messenger to the Delphic oracle returned with the 
command, possibly suggested by his own fertile mind, 
'* that the Olympic festival should be restored ; for 
its neglect had brought upon the Greeks the wrath 
of Jupiter, to whom it had been dedicated, and of 
Hercules, by whom it had been instituted ; and that a 
cessation of arms must therefore be proclaimed for all 
cities desirous of partaking in it." It may be pointed out 
that legend ascribes the origin of the games to Jupiter, 
in celebration of his victory over the Titans, but the 
general opinion is that they were first instituted by 
Hercules, as the oracle said, after a victory over King 
Augias, 1222 B.C. Be that as it may, Iphitus obeyed 
the god's command, caused the armistice to be pro- 
claimed, and, receiving general support, modelled the 
institution, possibly in collaboration with the Spartan 
lawgiver Lycurgus. 

It was ordained that a festival should be held at the 
temple of Jupiter at Olympia, near the town of Pisa, 
in Elis, open to the whole Hellenic race ; and that it 
should be renewed at the end of every fourth year. The 
festival was to consist in sacrifices to Jupiter and to 
Hercules, and in games in their honour ; and as wars 
might prevent not only individuals but whole States 
from enjoying the benefits the gods would bestow upon 
the participants, it was further ordained that an armistice 

26 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES ANCIENT 

should be proclaimed throughout Greece for some time 
before the commencement of the festival, and continue 
for some time after its conclusion. The significance of 
this ordinance in modern times may be even better 
appreciated if it be remembered that the boon of peace 
which it secured was one of the ideals underlying the 
foundation of the modern Olympic Games. 

The Eleians themselves obtained great privileges, 
arising out of their appointment as guardians and super- 
visors of the games. They were permitted to enjoy 
their possessions without molestation, as the games 
were celebrated within their territories ;, and the Spar- 
tans themselves concurred in this situation. So evident 
were the advantages that in the sixth century B.C. games 
were also instituted at Delphi, Nemea and Corinth ; 
but as their conduct was similar to that of the Olympic 
Games, further reference here is omitted, and the 
reader is referred to the first chapter for an account of 
their history and importance. 

At the Olympic festival established by Iphitus, the 
foot-race seems to have been the only game exhibited ; 
but subsequently the contests were multiplied. They 
appear to have been conducted somewhat irregularly 
until 776 B.C., when the Eleians engraved the name of 
their countryman Coroebus as winner of the foot-race ; 
and thenceforward there is an almost unbroken list of 
the winners in each succeeding Olympiad for a period 
of 1000 years. From that date also it was the custom 
to name each Olympiad after the victor in the foot-race ; 
and the period of time between celebrations of the 
games, namely four years, became a famous era among 
the Greeks, who computed their time by it. The 
games were exhibited at the time of the full moon next 
after the summer solstice, and until the 77th Festival 
(August, 472 B.C.) all the events were concluded in one 
day ; but afterwards the ceremony was extended to five, 
the first being the day of the sacrifice, the third the full 
moon, and the fifth the feast. 

27 



ATHLETICS 

In the course of time the original pageantry of the 
religious processions and celebrations yielded in magnifi- 
cence to the display provided by the gathering of huge 
concourses to the games. A mart or fair was the natural 
consequence of a periodical assembly of pleasure- 
seekers and religious devotees ; and the congregation 
of representatives of all the scattered Greek com- 
munities rendered the occasion suitable for political 
negotiation, the proclamation of treaties, and the 
arbitrament of disputes. Indeed, the primitive village 
feast developed into a common capital for all the branches 
of the Hellenic race, and grew with time to be the Mecca 
to which every Greek foregathered, from the remotest 
colonies as from the neighbouring towns. The bond of 
union became, in fact, so strong that it survived the 
extinction of Greek independence, and the games were 
only abolished in A.D. 394 by decree of the Emperor 
Theodosius. 

This communion of all the Greek people contributed in 
no small degree to the advancement of the arts, par- 
ticularly, as will be later seen, sculpture, literature and 
music, of manners and of thought ; and so valuable were 
these advantages, and so united the appreciation of that 
value, that the truce of Iphitus became established as a 
Divine ordinance, so that wars in progress were even 
suspended in order that people from all parts of Greece 
might attend the festival in safety. And it is proper to 
observe that although a few monarchs deemed it ex- 
pedient, for military and political reasons, to disregard 
this law, yet it was honoured on all save the rarest of 
occasions. So jealously was the truce upheld that the 
Spartans risked the liberties of Greece when the Persians 
were at the gates of Pylae, rather than march upon the 
holy days ; and on another occasion, when their scruples 
flew less high, the same nation was condemned in a 
heavy fine, and on refusal to pay, excluded by decree 
from the games. 

In Ebers' Eine Egyptische Kdnigstochter will be found 

28 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES ANCIENT 

an excellent description of the games in their palmiest 
days. After portraying the numerous races of Greek 
origin which were represented, the market beyond the 
river Alphaeus where one could find merchants from all 
parts of the world, the crowds, the ambassadors, the 
distinguished visitors, the valuable chariots and horses, 
the excitement of the games and the solemn presentation 
of the olive wreath to the winners, the author gives an 
exhilarating account of the wrestling match between the 
champion Milo and the youthful Spartan Lysander, who 
after two hours of matchless struggle sank lifeless to the 
ground. The honour accorded to a great athlete, even 
when vanquished, is well instanced by the following 
paragraph, the utterance being by a spectator : 

" Milo was obliged to resign the wreath, and the 
fame of the youth will resound through all Greece. 
Truly I would rather be dead like Lysander than live 
like Callias, to know an inactive old age. All Greece, 
represented by its best men, accompanied the body of 
the beautiful youth to the funeral pyre, and his statue 
is to be placed in the Altis. 

" Finally, the heralds proclaimed the award of the 
judges. * Sparta shall receive a victor's wreath for the 
dead man, for it was not Milo but death who con- 
quered noble Lysander, and he who goes forth un- 
conquered after a two hours' struggle with the 
strongest of the Greeks is well deserving of the olive 
branch ! ' " 

The games were presided over by ten judges the 
Hellanodicae chosen one for each tribe of the Eleians. 
They were obliged solemnly to swear that they would 
act impartially and not take any bribes ; and they had to 
attend the gymnasia beforehand to receive instruction 
in their duties. There were also certain officers to keep 
order, called alutai y similar to the Roman lictors. 

One feature of the games which has undergone a 
complete transformation in modern times is the position 
of women. In Hellas they might own chariot-teams and 

2Q 



ATHLETICS 

win prizes, but all except the priestesses of Demeter 
were forbidden to attend the celebration. Those who 
dared to infringe this law were immediately thrown 
down from a rock. This, however, was sometimes 
neglected, for in later years women certainly did attend 
the games, and at Elis were instituted special games in 
honour of Hera, which were confined to Eleian virgins 
and presided over by a board of matrons. The Spartans, 
too, under the inspiration of Lycurgus, encouraged 
athletic contests for maidens. In his educational 
system the great lawgiver ordered the young girls to 
exercise themselves in running, wrestling, and throwing 
the discus and javelin, that their bodies being strong and 
vigorous their children might be the same. But the 
result, if Aristotle's scathing stricture is reliable, was 
disastrous to their morals. 

It may be generally stated, therefore, that competition 
in the Olympic Games was restricted to men and boys. 
An athlete could commence his career as a boy in the 
contests reserved for boys, which followed closely those 
of the men ; and he could go on competing until the 
age of thirty-five, when he was debarred, it being 
assumed that he could no longer improve. 

The training for the contests was very rigorous, and 
took place in the gymnasia, which were special buildings 
provided by the State and managed by public officials. 
The regulation of the gymnasia at Athens is ascribed 
by Pausanius (i. 39, 3) to Theseus. Solon made laws 
on the subject ; but according to Galen it was subse- 
quently reduced to a system. Every athlete in the 
Olympic Games had to undergo ten months 1 training in 
the gymnasium, and it is worth mentioning in passing 
that these institutions ultimately extended their scope 
as the Greeks realised the importance in education of 
physical culture. The gymnasia became connected with 
both medicine and education, and provision was made 
for the moral training of the athlete and his instruction 
in letters and music. Philosophers frequented the 

3 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES ANCIENT 

porticoes, and Plato has immortalised the Academy of 
Athens, which was the resort not merely of the athlete, 
but also of students of philosophy and of science. 

Before the games opened, the athletes presented 
themselves to the judges and proved that they were 
of Hellenic descent an indispensable condition of 
admission and of blameless life. They swore that 
they had trained properly and that they would " play the 
game " ; and it may be noted that the latter oath is 
taken by every athlete in the modern games. 

Until the Fourteenth Olympiad the only race was the 
dromes, which was 192 yards, or one length of the 
stadium. There was then added the diaulos, or two-lap 
race ; and in the next (Fifteenth) Olympiad the dolichos, 
or long-distance race, probably about 2 miles in length. 
And there was also, for a time, a race in heavy armour, 
indicative of the early idea of games being a hand- 
maiden to military service (cf. Plato's Republic, Book iii.). 

There was no Marathon, that being a single run 
accomplished by the most famous of Greek runners, 
Phidippides, to bear the news of Athens' victory in 
490 B.C. 

Wrestling, one of the Homeric games, was introduced 
in the Eighteenth Olympiad, the most famous exponent 
being Milo of Crotona, who after seven victories met 
with no opponent, and who is said to have supported the 
falling roof over the school of Pythagoras ; and in the 
same year the pentathlon was added. This was a com- 
bination of the five events praised in Simonides* well- 
known pentameter : 

aA/za; 7ro8aj/cen?i> ; SiaKov ; 'a/covra ; TraA^v, 
or leaping, wrestling, discus, javelin and running. 

In boxing, the use of the ctfstus, or leather thongs 
bound round the fist, marked the chief difference from 
modern practice, and the weighting of the glove with lead 
was a later and Roman development. The references 
in contemporary literature to broken ears rather than 
broken noses suggests a windmill style ; even the use 



ATHLETICS 

of the c<e$tu$ was prohibited in the chief event of all, 
the pankration, or combination of boxing and wrestling. 

Chariot-races, which may be regarded as the fore- 
runners of those so popular among the Romans, were 
held in the Hippodrome, and were described by Pau- 
sanius and also by Pindar in many of his celebrated 
odes ; and there were also contests in poetry, eloquence 
and the fine arts. 

The prizes originally possessed some intrinsic value, 
and tripods were a common variety ; but after the 
Sixth Olympiad, upon the advice of the Delphic oracle, 
the crown of wild olive was substituted and became the 
sole reward of the victor. These olive wreaths* were 
cut from the kallistephanos, or sacred tree of Hercules, 
which, according to legend and Pindar, had been 
brought by him from Ister and planted in the sacred 
grove at Altis. So small and trifling an award was sup- 
posed to stimulate courage and virtue, and its reception 
was regarded as the highest honour which could befall 
a man or his city. It may not be without interest to 
relate that when the Achilles Club competed in Athens 
in 1927 the winners were presented with wreaths 
culled from this same grove, a courtesy and a significant 
gesture which did not pass unappreciated. 

It would be erroneous, however, to conclude that the 
conquering athlete received no further honour and 
acclaim. His name, parentage and country were pro- 
claimed by the heralds ; the judges placed the wreath 
upon his brow ; his statue was carved by the most 
famous sculptors and set up among the Olympionicae 
(statues of the victors) at Olympia in the sacred grove of 
Jupiter, where the fragments may be seen to-day. His 
return home was that of a successful warrior, a com- 
parison which Thucydides employs with delightful 
irony in describing a reception of the famous Lacedae- 
monian general Brasidas. An Athenian victor was re- 
warded, in accordance with the law of Solon, with 500 
drachmae and free rations for life in the Prytaneum 

32 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES ANCIENT 

modern notions of amateurism differ somewhat from 
the Greek ! whilst a Spartan obtained, not inappro- 
priately perhaps, the post of honour in battle, a reward 
not calculated^to enable him to boast for long of his 
triumphs. The hero's entry into his native city was not 
through the gates, but, to make it more grand and 
solemn, through a breach made in the walls. Painters, 
sculptors and poets were employed to celebrate his 
name ; and ridiculous exaggeration of values though 
this was, one cannot refrain from thankfulness for the 
works of art which were thus created. 

It may not be altogether out of place to refer 
more particularly to this aspect of the ancient games. 
Simonides, whose well-known pentameter has already 
been cited ; Euripides, who was obliged to disguise his 
feelings and compose paeans of praise about the victories 
of Alcibiades in the chariot-race ; and the lyrist Pindar 
to mention only three great poets were frequently 
employed to laud the heroes of the games. These 
contests provided the theme for some of the finest odes 
of Pindar, the Epinicia or Odes of Victory, a collection 
of forty-four odes, traditionally divided into, four books, 
answering to the four great festivals at Olympia, Delphi, 
Nemea and Corinth. The actual victory which occa- 
sioned the ode is seldom treated at length or in detail ; 
Pindar's method was to choose and dilate upon some 
heroic myth connected with the victor's city or family, 
and to return at the close to the subject of his merit or 
good fortune. There is a strongly marked religious 
feeling in Pindar's poems, and he has been described, 
not without good reason, as the prophet of generous 
emulation and reverent self-control two ideals which 
the modern Olympians have ever had set before them ; 
whilst in political thought he expressed another modern 
ideal, that the rivalries of peace are worthier than the 
triumphs of war. 

The period to which most of Pindar's odes belong, 
namely 500-460 B.C., also marked a stage in the 
c 33 



ATHLETICS 

development of Greek plastic art, and it may be said that 
Olympia forms the link between Pindar's poetry and 
Greek sculpture. From about 560 B.C. sculpture had 
been employed to commemorate athletes, chiefly at 
Olympia ; and in a striking passage (Nem. v.) Pindar 
recognises sculpture and poetry as kindred arts for this 
purpose. 

It is certainly right to attribute much of the excellence 
of Greek sculpture to athletics. As Mr. Percy Gardner 
points out in his profound and fascinating chapter in 
The Legacy of Greece, naturalism, one of the chief 
qualities of Greek art, found full scope in the oppor- 
tunities afforded to the sculptor to observe the naked 
human body in the gymnasia, where the finest of the 
young athletes could be studied and copied in every 
variety of pose and action. And employing his in- 
herent sense of beauty to preserve the beautiful and 
reject the ugly, the sculptor would create his gods after 
the type of idealised man, giving to Heracles the form 
of the wrestler, to Hermes that of the ideal runner, and 
to Apollo, not the muscles of the trained athlete, but the 
serenity and symmetry of a man perfected by self- 
reverence and self-control. 

Even in their work which represented human types, 
the Greek sculptors' love of harmony was evidenced. 
To cite only a few examples, the work of Myron, famous 
for his Discobolus, of which copies anatomically in- 
accurate are to be found in the Vatican and the British 
Museum, was celebrated for rhythm in motion, and that 
of Polyclitus for careful balance and a sense of ana- 
tomical proportion. His greatest works, the Dory- 
phorus, or spear-bearer, and the Diadumenus, or victor 
bidding a wreath round his brow, are the most beautiful 
fruit of a life-study in the gymnasia ; and there can be 
no question that for the work of Pheidias on the Olympian 
temple of Zeus and of Praxiteles, with, for example, his 
superb Hermes, posterity is indebted to the cult of 
athletics. 

34 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES ANCIENT 

The learned author draws attention to another 
feature of the art of the Greeks which also found 
expression in their attitude towards athletics, namely 
idealism. He says, in words which the modern seekers 
after records might ponder : "In their practice of 
athletics the Greeks did not, like the moderns, think 
only of the number of feet an athlete could leap, or the 
space of time he would take to run a distance. They 
thought also of his form, of the rhythmic and harmonious 
character of his action. If an athlete showed ugly form, 
they would hiss him, as they would an incompetent 
actor. In all the statues of athletes which have come 
down to us, not one shows an inharmonious develop- 
ment." He goes on to contrast the Greek types with 
the forms of modern athletes, pointing out that northern 
youth is less harmoniously built, more sinewy, harsh 
and wiry in type than the rather fleshy Greek. He 
instances the splendid work, exhibited at Paris and 
Amsterdam, of Dr. Tait McKenzie, the Director of 
Physical Education at the University of Pennsylvania, 
who has created his beautiful figures from careful study 
of the forms and measurements of hundreds of athletes 
in Philadelphia, so that they are worthy to rank beside 
such masterpieces of athletic idealism as the famous 
JfpoxyomenoSy or athlete scraping sand and oil from 
his body with a strigil. 

Finally, Mr. Gardner, in sympathy with the probably 
prejudiced views of the writers of this book, deplores 
the influence upon women of the excessive cult of 
athletics, "After suggesting that the practice of athletic 
games by women tends to make them depart from the 
essentially feminine, he expresses a desire to see the 
physical ideal of efficient womanhood properly presented 
in modern art, as a being who moderately pursues phy- 
sical culture as an aid to health and yet preserves her 
femininity in grace of body and of mind. 

This rather lengthy digression may serve to illustrate 
the idealism with which the Greeks endowed the games. 

35 



ATHLETICS 

In yet another aspect of this spirit the games are worthy 
of consideration ; they evoked in Greece the dawn of 
public spirit. As a famous historian has pointed out, 
the judges first applied the name of Hellenes to the 
class. For although politically divided into provinces, 
involved in feuds and local animosities, the members of 
this class recognise one another, call a truce for the 
festival, and find a common interest in preserving their 
class supremacy. Gymnastics require self-control and 
training ; military service requires obedience ; class 
supremacy is unfavourable to the pre-dominance of the 
individual man. Thus men trained themselves strictly 
and austerely, and gained control over themselves, body 
and soul. They set up an ideal of the perfect man, who 
by training and obedience earns the right to be free and 
to rule. And they held out to him the prospect of 
becoming equal with the gods ; but on earth they kept 
him within bounds by raising above him the other 
Greek ideal, that of the free self-governing community, 
the aggregate of equally worthy and therefore equally 
privileged free men. It was this idealism in the Greek 
love of athletics, not the exaggerated hero-worship 
which Euripides so properly condemned in the Auto- 
lycuS) which was so admirable ; and it may be said that 
the same spirit of idealism animated the founders of the 
modern Olympic Games, which in their fellowship and 
in their pacific aims bear so marked a resemblance to the 
games of ancient Greece. 



Section 2. Modern 

It was in 1894 that a great Frenchman, the Baron 
Pierre de Coubertin, initiated the most important 
athletic movement of modern times by gathering around 
him in congress in Paris representatives of most of the 
principal sporting bodies in Europe and America. His 
organising genius, his noble idealism and his power of 

36 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES MODERN 

inspiration enabled that congress, which constituted 
itself the International Olympic Games Committee and 
elected the Baron as its first president, to prepare the 
way for a revival in 1 896 of the ancient Olympic Games. 
The Baron was inspired by the racial union which, as 
has already been described, in part resulted in ancient 
Greece from the cult of athletics, and among his objects 
were the internationalisation of sport and the pre- 
vention of war. 

That the former object has been in considerable 
measure achieved is evidenced by the facts cited in 
Chapter III ; it may be urged that so far the latter 
has scarcely been fulfilled. It is to be borne in mind, 
however, that games at the best can only be a contri- 
butory factor to the cause of peace and international 
harmony. The aspiration is that the influence which 
they wield may be so pervasive as to engender a 
universal spirit of sportsmanship and fair play. 

Appropriately enough, the first modern Olympiad 
was held in Athens in 1896. Through the munificence 
of a Greek merchant, M. Averoff, a superb new building 
was erected on the site of the ancient stadium of 
Lycurgus, which had only recently been excavated. 
Unfortunately the great beauty of the building, whose 
pure white marble terraces glisten in the sunshine as 
if in emulation of the ancient temples of the city, was 
not matched by its utility. With a seating capacity of 
45,000, and a length of 200 yards, it promised well ; 
but in breadth, unhappily, it boasted only 30 yards. 
The difficulty of negotiating the consequent sharp 
corners accounts for the poverty of the records of that 
first meeting, and in part occasioned the transference of 
the second festival to Paris in 1 900. 

Since then the venue of the games has altered every 
fourth year, typifying perhaps their international char- 
acter ; and the Third Olympiad was held at St. Louis, the 
Fourth at London, the Fifth at Stockholm, and the 
Sixth should have been held at Berlin in 1916, But for 

37 



ATHLETICS 

an obvious and terrible reason that Olympiad was never 
held ; and when the games were resumed after the 
Great War, Belgium was the host at Antwerp, and the 
German people were excluded. The Eighth Olympiad 
was in Paris in 1924 ; the Ninth in 1928 was held in 
Amsterdam, and in part made memorable by the re- 
inclusion of Germany among the nations taking part. 
Los Angeles has been selected for the Tenth Olympiad ; 
and various cities have been proposed for the cele- 
bration of the games of 1936, among them Berlin and 
Madrid. On one occasion the regular quadrennial 
sequence has been broken, in 1906, when the Greeks 
organised a large and successful Panhellenic meeting 
in Athens, a meeting which does not, however, rank as 
one of the Olympiads proper. 

Before relating some of the outstanding occurrences 
at the several games, it is proper to consider their 
organisation. The games are controlled by an Inter- 
national Olympic Committee, presided over by Count 
Baillet-Latour, and consisting of three or less repre- 
sentatives of every country which chooses to compete : 
by 1928 there were some forty-eight nations represented. 
These representatives are elected by the Committee 
when vacancies occur, and they are men of such standing 
in their respective countries that they are able to preach 
and practise with effect the gospel of the Olympic 
movement. 

This Committee holds a plenary session or congress 
every fourth year, usually the year subsequent to the 
games, and an annual meeting, lasting about a week ; 
and questions demanding rapid decision during the 
interim are determined by the Executive Committee of 
seven, about whose powers at the moment there is, 
unhappily, some doubt. 

Among the functions of the I.O.C., or its so-called 
Executive Committee, are the determination of the 
dates of the games ; their allocation to the country 
which is considered to have the prior claim -to the 

38 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES MODERN 

honour of acting as host ; the inclusion or rejection of 
particular sports ; the assurance of the good and 
sportsman-like conduct of the games ; the establishment 
of general principles of amateurism ; and the spread of 
the Olympic movement throughout the world. 

The responsibility for special organisation, such as 
the duty of providing stadia and of assisting in the 
provision of accommodation, falls upon the National 
Olympic Council of the organising country. As com- 
pensation for the very heavy financial outlay which the 
organising country is called upon to face, it is permitted 
to take over all the gate receipts ; consequently all the 
visiting nations are confronted with the serious problem 
of meeting the expenses of transporting, housing and 
feeding their teams. 

Since 1920 the conduct of the various sports con- 
tested which these shall be is determined by the 
I.O.C. has been left entirely in the hands of the 
International Federations which govern each particular 
sport. Thus, for example, the control of track and 
field athletics is entrusted to the International Amateur 
Athletic Federation, whose codes of rules and amateur 
definitions apply, who nominate their own officials, 
determine the programme of events, control the entries, 
decide questions of status, hear appeals, and who, 
working in concert with the committee of the organising 
country, prepare for and conduct their own programme. 

These International Federations are composed of 
delegates from the governing bodies of the particular 
sport in every country where it is practised the A.A.A., 
A.A.U., F.F.A., D.S.L.,* etc., being represented on the 
I.A.A.F. ; and they may be said to be independent of 
one another and of the I.O.C. except and in so far 
as the I.O.C. lays down any regulations for general 

*A.A;A. : Amateur Athletic Association (Great Britain). 
A.A.IL : Amateur Athletic Union (U.S.A.). 
F.F.A. : Fdration Francaise d'Athtetisme (France). 
D.S;L: Deutsche Sportbehdrde far Leichtathletik (Germany). 

39 



ATHLETICS 

observance at the games. Thus, for example, the I.O.C. 
has laid down a general definition of amateurism, within 
which all competitors must declare themselves to be, 
and which in some cases goes further than the Inter- 
national Federations' definition governing competition 
in particular sports. One instance of this is, of course, 
Association football. The Olympic definition of an 
amateur excludes anyone who receives payment for 
broken time ; the F.I.F.A.f definition permits such 
payment; and a vexed discussion arose in 1927 over 
this divergence of view which still remains to be settled. 

Each nation, moreover, has its own Olympic Associa- 
tion or Committee, e.g. in Great Britain the B.O.A. 
(British Olym'pic Association). The principal function 
of these Associations, which are composed of influential 
men acting in co-operation with representatives of all 
the governing bodies of sport interested in the games, 
together with a few co-opted experts, is to provide for 
the proper and worthy representation of their country at 
the games. The duty of selecting the competitors and 
of nominating the officials in each sport is left in the 
hands of the governing body of that sport ; but the 
Olympic Association charges itself with all the arrange- 
ments for transport, housing, food and equipment. 

The primary task of the National Olympic Associa- 
tions is, therefore, to raise funds. In some countries, 
particularly on the Continent, where sport has an un- 
fortunate and one trusts not permanent tendency to be 
regarded as a matter of political importance, Govern- 
ment grants have been sought and obtained. This 
system, one is happy to say, does not obtain in Great 
Britain, her Dominions, or the United States, in all of 
which the Olympic Association is entirely dependent 
upon voluntary contributions for the furtherance of its 
work. When this fact is borne in mind and it is realised 
that in some countries, especially perhaps Great Britain, 
there still exists a strong prejudice among many sports- 
f F.I.F.A. : International Football Federation. 
40 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES MODERN 

men against the games, one is better able to appreciate 
the magnificent work of the various National Associations 
in raising, through their Appeals Committees and with 
the active support of the Press, the large sums (some 
25,000 in Great Britain) necessary to ensure the proper 
representation of their countries. 

Not only are the National Associations responsible for 
the financial burden of participation in the games ; they 
have also the duty of fostering public opinion in support 
of the movement. That this is no light matter has been 
hinted at already ; that it has been in considerable 
measure fulfilled is evidenced by the interest now taken 
by the Press throughout the world. 

Further, in the case of the B.O.A., which may 
probably be regarded as typical of all associations, sub- 
committees have charge of the housing and entertain- 
ments arrangements, the latter being a sphere of activity 
in which, at Antwerp, Paris and Amsterdam, Great 
Britain has been particularly prominent. Hospitality 
was extended to the Dominion teams and to the repre- 
sentatives of other countries, and was reciprocated. 

The programme of the games has undergone many 
changes since their inception, and in a volume on 
Athletics it is scarcely necessary to enlarge upon the 
other sports, few of which have been practised on every 
occasion. There can be no doubt that in the opinion of 
the general public track and field athletics are regarded 
as the principal sport in the games, chiefly, one imagines, 
because they are the portion which is most intimately 
connected with the ancient festival ; and perhaps, 
secondarily, because athletics, in their regulations and 
their practice, are the most internationalised of all 
sports. 

Association football vies with them in universality 
and, judging by gate receipts, outstrips them in popu- 
larity ; but this sport was only introduced in 1908, has 
been the subject of bitter controversy in connection 
with the question of amateur status, and, whilst retained 



ATHLETICS 

in 1928 because of the revenue it brought in, has 
been eliminated, probably wisely, from the programme 
for 1932. 

The sport which ranks nearly equal with athletics is 
swimming, which for both men and women (with 
reservations as to the strain which excessive competition 
may involve in the case of the fair sex) is admirably 
suitable as an Olympic sport, providing, as it has done 
since 1908, clean competition under well-defined laws 
among athletes from all over the world. 

Unfortunately one cannot write so enthusiastically 
about another sport, practised by the Greeks under 
different rules, namely boxing. To this event, and 
some others which have proved unsatisfactory (e.g. 
fencing), further reference will be made when an 
attempt is made to estimate the value and achievement 
of the Olympic movement. It is sufficient here to note 
its inclusion since 1908, the year which saw introduced 
some of the sports which lapsed after 1896, namely 
cycling, wrestling, rowing and gymnastics. Weight- 
lifting, polo, lawn-tennis and the modern pentathlon 
were held in 1908 for the first time. Of these sports, 
cycling has proved on the whole successful, but by no 
means as popular as pure athletics ; rowing has attracted 
many splendid crews and individuals, but has suffered 
somewhat from the difficulty of providing courses 
suitable either for the competitors or spectators, and 
also from questions concerning amateurism. Lawn- 
tennis, already well catered for internationally by 
Wimbledon and the Davis Cup Competition, was 
sensibly dropped after 1924 ; and the other sports have 
their votaries and vicissitudes, but only slight general 
appeal. 

In desultory fashion also have been held Rugby 
football, yachting, riding and hockey, Rugby football 
was never supported by Great Britain, and was wisely 
abandoned in 1928 as not being of universal interest, 
especially in July. Hockey was included with success 

42 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES MODERN 

in that year, taking place in May, when a large entry 
testified to the expansion of the game on the Continent 
and a keen competition was won by the All-India team. 

Winter sports, i.e. ski-ing, skating, tobogganing, 
have also proved an attractive addition to the last two 
programmes ; but their value is limited, owing to the 
exceptional opportunities given to mountain peoples to 
practise the sports, in which few other races can take 
part, and the influence even upon them of the different 
climatic conditions under which the sports are held, and 
which render ski-ing, for example, a different art in 
Switzerland from what it is in Norway. 

One must also mention an historic revival the art, 
literary and musical competitions. Few people pay 
much attention to the results of these competitions now- 
adays, but they are of significance as perpetuating the 
Greek spirit ; and one may perhaps venture to hope for 
their greater development and better support as it is 
more generally appreciated that art and literature, 
music and religion contribute in the most signal manner 
to the welfare of mankind. 

Any attempt at a comprehensive account of the 
results of the respective modern Olympiads would be 
out of place in this volume, and those who desire full 
information are directed to the Official Reports which 
appeared after the several celebrations. One may, 
however, allude briefly to some of the outstanding 
performances at the various festivals as being indicative 
of the development of the movement or of historical 
interest ; and such allusions must in the main be con- 
fined to track and field athletics, which are generally 
conceded to be the most interesting, as they are the 
most ancient sport included in the modern games. 

Although the first modern games were held in 1896, 
their real athletic significance only became pronounced 
when they were celebrated in London in 1908. ^At 
Athens in 1896 the shape of the track militated against 
good performances if the watch be taken as the criterion 

43 



ATHLETICS 

of excellence ; and the representation of the nations 
was small. The United States had a preponderance of 
successes ; Great Britain won the 800 and i^oo-metre 
races, testifying thus early to the national genius for 
middle-distance events ; and very appropriately a Greek, 
Loues, won the Marathon. 

The Paris Olympiad in 1900 likewise emphasised 
American superiority, which was largely contributed to 
by the achievements of Alvin Kranzlein, an under- 
graduate from the University of Pennsylvania, who won, 
on grass, the 6ometres flat, the no and 200 metres 
hurdles, and the long jump. Great Britain again won 
the middle-distance events and two others, but the 
number of competing nations remained relatively small. 
This was even more marked in 1 904, when few countries, 
indeed, and Great Britain not among them, could find 
the time or money to send teams across to St. Louis, 
where Americans swept the board. At the Panhellenic 
meeting in Athens in 1906 Europe succeeded in 
lending proper support, and Sweden became prominent 
for the first time ; but it was left for the 1908 Olympiad 
to give that universal importance to the movement from 
which it has never declined. 

As has been seen, at this celebration many of the 
sports which compose the present programme and have 
not proved an unmixed blessing therein were introduced. 
To render the programme unwieldy by including sports 
for which there was no universal desire or standard code 
was scarcely compensated for by the increased number of 
competitors and their opportunities to fulfil the ideal 
objects of the founder. It is to these less universally 
popular sports that much of the blame for the incidents 
which have from time to time marred the Olympiads 
must be attributed ; and one cannot help regretting that 
the modern games were not preserved more in con- 
formity with the ancient, and that sports of limited 
interest, such as polo or yachting, and those already 
possessing international tournaments, such as lawn- 

44 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES MODERN 

tennis and football, were ever introduced, only, in 
several cases, to be rejected after unsatisfactory trial. 

However, the 1908 programme was packed, and 
some magnificent performances were recorded. Great 
Britain did poorly in track and field athletics, despite 
the success of Lieut. Halswelle in the 400 metres, of 
the South African, R. Walker, in the 100 metres, and 
of the Canadian, R. Kerr, in the 200 metres, and blush- 
ingly admitted the overwhelming superiority of the 
Americans. On the Marathon day over 100,000 people 
saw the dramatic and tragic collapse of the Italian 
Dorando, who, easily first at the Stadium gate, almost 
fainted in the last few yards, was assisted, and, of course, 
met with disqualification. 

The next Olympiad, at Stockholm, saw pre-War 
athletic talent at its zenith. In only one event besides 
the 4 by 100 metres relay was Great Britain successful, 
and that was a startling surprise, namely the 1500 
metres, which the famous Oxonian, A. N. S. Jackson, 
won in record time, after an amazing final spurt against 
four of the finest milers America has produced. The 
Americans again completely dominated the sprints and 
hurdles, and the subsequent world's record-holder for 
both the quarter and half-mile races, J. E. Meredith, 
prevented Melvin Sheppard, by only a yard, from re- 
peating his 1908 victory in the 800 metres. Finland 
also leaped into prominence through the remarkable 
success of H. Kolehmainen over the French crack, 
J. Bouin, in the 5000 metres race ; two South Africans, 
M'Arthur and Gitsham, finished first and second 
respectively in the Marathon ; and Sweden did extremely 
well in the field events and cross-country. 

The Sixth Olympiad, planned for Berlin, was never 
held ; and then, preserving the sequence of dates, but 
prejudicing the still war-worn countries, the Seventh 
was celebrated at Antwerp in 1920. This time 
American ascendancy was sternly challenged by tfie 
Finns and Swedes, whilst A. G. Hill's magnificent 

4? 



ATHLETICS 

double in the 800 and 1500 metres, P. Hodge's 
steeplechase, and the 1600 metres relay race were 
prizes which assisted to restore Britain's self-confid- 
ence and prestige. Among the Finns, H. Koleh- 
mainen, winner of the Marathon, and the youthful 
Paavo Nurmi, who won the 10,000 metres and cross- 
country and was second in the 5000 metres (wherein 
the Frenchman Guillemot obtained his revanche for the 
10,000), as the first of his wonderful exploits in the games, 
are to be commemorated for their achievements on the 
track, whilst five others won various field events ; and 
although the Swedes only won one event, they were 
placed in almost all. The walking of the Italian Ugo 
Frigerio and the high hurdling of Earl Thomson, a 
Canadian who still holds the world's record of 14! 
seconds for the 120 yards hurdles, were also outstand- 
ing performances. 

The Eighth Olympiad, it is generally conceded, was 
dominated by the spell of Nurmi. His remarkable 
victories in individual and team contests he won the 
1500 and 5000 metres races, the cross-country and the 
3000 metres team races caused him to be regarded as 
almost superhuman ; and his prowess both at the 
Olympic Games and on subsequent occasions has been 
commemorated in his native land by the erection of a 
statue in his honour. And yet, but for him, another 
Finnish athlete, W. Ritola, would have been acclaimed 
as the greatest runner the world had ever seen. Second 
to Nurmi in the 5000 metres, the team race and the cross- 
country, he won the 10,000 metres and the steeplechase 
as he liked ; and his performances, together with those 
of Nurmi and the victory of Stenroos in the Marathon, 
gave Finland the right to claim supremacy on the track. 

The United States and Great Britain divided such 
events as remained, the former winning both hurdles, 
both relays and the 200 metres, and the latter the 
100, 400 and 800 metres. These British successes by 
H. M. Abrahams, E. H. Liddell and D. G. A. Lowe 

46 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES MODERN 

ranked high among the performances at these games. 
To Abrahams fell the honour of being the first English- 
man to win the Olympic sprint, and in so doing he 
thrice equalled the Olympic record ; whilst Liddell of 
Edinburgh, to the skirling of the bagpipes, broke the 
Olympic record for the 400 metres. 

It is also interesting to note that Great Britain had 
one or more men in the final six in each track event, and 
that this achievement was not quite equalled even by 
the United States, which figured in every final but in 
two events failed to obtain one of the first six places. 
By way of contrast, however, the Americans won six 
field events and the pentathlon, and secured innumerable 
places, whilst Great Britain gained one third and one 
sixth. The United States, in fact, proved well-nigh 
irresistible in the field, Sweden being much less prominent 
than formerly and the distance races marking Finland's 
effort. As for the other nations, including the Domin- 
ions, according to the statistics appended to the B.O.A. 
Official Report on the 1924 Olympiad, the percentage 
of points which they gained was 2 1 per cent., divided 
among thirty-seven nations. 

The Ninth Olympiad at Amsterdam witnessed a 
better balance of national strength. It was memorable 
for the re-admission of Germany, whose fine team would 
have secured fourth place under the old system of 
classification of nations by points, which had, however, 
very wisely been abolished by the I.O.C. in 1925. 

Perhaps the greatest surprise was the amazing success 
of the British Empire teams, particularly the Canadian. 
Not only did a 1 9-year-old schoolboy, P. Williams, win 
both the 100 and the 200 metres for Canada, but his 
team-mates were second in the 400 metres, fourth in 
the 800 metres and fifth in the 200 metres. Of the 
South Africans, S. J. M. Atkinson won the high hurdles 
after his compatriot, G. C. Weightman-Smith, had set up 
a world's record in a heat a remarkable performance 
considering Atkinson's age as a hurdler, for he had been 

47 



ATHLETICS 

beaten by inches only in 1924 and another was fifth 
in the 100 metres. Moreover, Dr. O'Callaghan of the 
Irish Free State won the hammer. The Mother Country, 
although enjoying advantages in the matter of proximity 
to Amsterdam and in training methods, did not attain 
quite the same general standard as in 1924, partly 
because of the higher standard of competition ; but she 
did have the satisfaction of winning two events and of 
being second in both sprints. Lord Burghley broke the 
series of American successes in the 400 metres hurdles, 
and the 800 metres was won by D. G. A. Lowe. 

Allusion has been made to the German effort, which, 
despite its excellence, occasioned some disappointment 
to that nation. It had been generally anticipated that 
the sprint events would be fought out between the 
Americans and the Germans ; but in the finals the 
Germans took two third places and a sixth and the 
Americans two fourths and a sixth. The Germans 
finished third in the 400 and 800 and fourth in the 1500 
metres races and also secured second place to the 
Americans in both relays ; and they were placed in 
several field events f Surely a fine record for a young and 
relatively inexperienced team 1 

The field events were again dominated by the United 
States. They won five ; in all save one they had three 
men in the first six ; and these facts, coupled with their 
victories in the relays and that of Barbuti in the 400 
metres, and their many placings in every track event 
except the 1500 and 10,000 metres, should dispel once 
and for all the charge of failure so ignorantly and un- 
worthily levelled against them. 

Scandinavian successes have become the rule at he 
Olympic Games, and the Finns showed their usual con- 
sistency in their specialities, long-distance running and 
the throwing events. For the third tim Nurmi dazzled 
all beholders with his greatness, for although he won 
the 10,000 metres only, he was second in both the 5000 
ahd the steeplechase an astounding mixture of events. 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES MODERN 

Ritola also proved to be almost as wonderful as in Paris, 
winning the 5000 and being second in the 10,000 ; and 
new blood to supplement the efforts of these two athletic 
giants, now, alas, belonging to the old guard, was found 
to win the 1500 metres and the steeplechase for Finland. 

The apparent decline of Sweden in 1924 proved to 
be illusory and with a first, two seconds, a third and two 
fourths she had cause to be content ; and even France, 
who met with rude disappointment, gained some solace 
from the victory of her Arab, El Ouafi, in the Marathon 
and a second in the 1500 metres. 

For the first time also the East played a prominent 
part in the games and forcibly brought home their 
complete universality. The Far-Eastern Olympics, to 
which much of the credit for the advancement of the 
Olympic idea in the East must be attributed, are treated 
of elsewhere, and one is content here to mention the 
successes of Eastern competitors in the games at 
Amsterdam, Gallant Japan achieved glorious renown, 
M. Oda won the hop, step and jump ; two Japanese 
were fourth and sixth, respectively, in the Marathon ; 
another was sixth in the pole jump ; and yet another 
fourth in the hop, step and jump. And a Philippine 
Islander was placed fourth in the high jump. 

Finally, the Ninth Olympiad was the first occasion 
of the inclusion of women's events in the track and 
field section of the games. One is compelled to regard 
this as a mistake, although the I.A.A.F. subsequently 
approved by a small majority their inclusion in the pro- 
gramme for 1932. The performances of the women at 
Amsterdam were undoubtedly excellent in their class, 
and the contestants most courageous ; but it was all a 
terrible anticlimax to the brilliance of the men. On 
aesthetic as well as athletic grounds one would prefer to 
see women's events reserved for a Women's Olympiad, 
as at Stockholm in 1925, if held at all ; and for reasons 
set out elsewhere in these pages one is inclined to 
deprecate their competition anywhere. 
D 49 



ATHLETICS 

Before leaving the subject of the Olympic Games it 
is pertinent to attempt to estimate their achievement, 
to determine their significance, and to contemplate their 
future. The present enthusiasm for athletics is de- 
monstrated nowhere more forcibly than in the post- War 
impetus given to the Olympic Movement which now 
embraces the world. Not only has the representation 
at the Olympic Games increased from twenty nations 
and 2000 athletes in 1908 to forty-five nations and over 
6000 athletes in 1928, but also in the Far East, in 
Africa, and in South America subsidiary regional 
Olympiads have been inaugurated. The objects of the 
games have already been sufficiently explained, and it is 
evident that the internationalisation of sport is a fait 
accompli. It is submitted that the influence of games, 
and particularly of the Olympic Games, is potent 
in the cause of peace, engendering as they do a 
universal spirit of sportsmanship. 

Experience of international competition and of the 
Olympic Games has convinced many people of the 
reality of the friendships which may be and indeed have 
been formed between rival national teams and their 
members. The difficulties hindering exchange of 
thoughts and ideas are less evident in games than might 
be imagined. Language, for instance, is by no means 
the insuperable barrier that one might expect. Admit- 
tedly such contacts do not carry one fai intellectually ; 
but it is fair to suggest that recognition of the fact that 
nations other than one's own have similar ideals of fair 
play and sportsmanship kindles respect for people 
hitherto considered alien, and tends to bind nations 
closer together. If one has learnt to trust a man when 
playing a game, progress has been made towards trusting 
him in more serious walks of life ; and surely no one 
will deny that trust is the corner-stone of peace. 

Critics can, of course, adduce instances of discord 
arising out of the Olympic Games, and one must not 
shirk the fact that some forms of sport do suffer at 



THE OLYMPIC GAMES MODERN 

present when internationalised. Apart from the obvious 
fact that it would be demanding perfection to expect 
6000 men never to disagree during a fortnight, their 
nationalities and temperaments being so diverse, it is 
significant to note that almost every recent instance of 
bad sportsmanship or ill-feeling has arisen in a sport 
which depends for its decision almost entirely upon the 
verdict of a referee, as, for example, in the so-called 
defensive sports (i.e. boxing, fencing), which might be 
better omitted from the Olympic programme, or upon 
the interpretation of rules not yet properly standardised, 
e.g. the definition of walking in that anomaly, the walking 
race. Certainly no incident marred either the track 
athletics or the swimming (except water polo) in 1928. 

Failure to play the game in the right spirit may 
depend upon two things. It may be due to a reversion 
to unfair tactics, in which case ostracism will inevitably 
ensue. Or it may originate in the novelty of games- 
playing, in the fact that people unused to the traditions 
of games require educating therein. In this case it is 
the duty and the privilege of those to whom games and 
their codes are second nature to play with and teach 
the newcomers. And not only players, but spectators 
also may learn to play the game and respect the decision 
of the referee, for it is safe to say that quite two distur- 
bances out of three are caused by the spectators. The 
remedy lies in proper education of the public to respect 
the referee's verdict, and in the endeavour to provide 
facilities for more people to play games and so understand 
their spirit. And another powerful influence for good 
should spring from a recognition by women of the part 
they can play, not only in their own games, but among 
their men friends, by insistence upon true sportsmanship 
and nobility. 

A criticism sometimes levelled against international 
games is that they tend to provoke embittered national 
rivalry ; but if this be so and theye is scant evidence 
of it it is due to the failure to retain a proper perspective. 

5 1 



ATHLETICS 

If, unfortunately, it be forgotten that games are to 
be played as games, joyously, and too great stress is 
laid upon the importance of winning instead of upon 
the way in which the game is played, then admittedly 
there is a danger in international athletics. Excessive 
specialisation in order to achieve superlative results, for 
example, cannot be commended, although scientific study 
in order to play better is consistent with the primary 
object of games, namely to create mens sana in corpore 
sano and to provide recreation and pleasure. The safe- 
guards against these dangers, however, lie largely in the 
hands of the competitors themselves, for if they are 
animated by a proper spirit of athletic idealism which 
one ventures to think has been the case since 1918, and 
should be the heritage of future generations they will 
meet in friendly opposition, imbued with a sense of 
true sportsmanship and mutual self-esteem. 

They will be patriots ; but patriots of the kind held 
up to praise by Dean Inge in his sermon to the delegates 
at the Assembly of the League of Nations in September 
1928, "loving their country, and proud to make it 
honoured, respected and even beloved by other nations." 
Men can go out in sport even as in politics to fulfil the 
Dean's exhortation : " To try to understand the point 
of view of other nations, and to help their countrymen 
to understand it. To avoid expecting too much, and 
yet to remember that as ice melts at a certain temperature 
so does the human heart. Without quixotically sur- 
rendering important interests, to look out for opportun- 
ities of generous conduct towards foreigners and foreign 
nations." Those who have witnessed international 
matches, and particularly those who have attended the 
Olympic Games, realise that such opportunities exist 
and are seized. 



CHAPTER III 

INTERNATIONAL ATHLETICS 

Section i . Europe 

A PROMINENT feature of post-War athletics has 
been the vast development of international 
competition. The merits and dangers of this 
advance, swept forward upon a -veritable wave of enthu- 
siasm among peoples determined henceforth to think 
internationally, were discussed in the last chapter, and 
one is only concerned here with its historical aspect. 

On the continent of Europe athletics was not 
generally popular until the twentieth century ; and it 
was just prior to the Great War that regular international 
athletic matches were instituted. The movement lapsed, 
of course, during the years 1914-19 ; but the Seventh 
Olympiad at Antwerp gave it a fresh impetus, and 
Europe is now almost honeycombed with international 
matches of all varieties, whether between countries, 
cities, clubs or individuals, whilst no country is without 
its annual national championships. 

In control of all these contests is the International 
Amateur Athletic Federation, upon which all the 
national governing bodies of athletics, such as the A. A. A., 
are represented. At its congress in Geneva in 1921 the 
Federation, besides settling the Olympic programme, 
adopted a standard code of rules to govern international 
competitions. At a later date the Federation established 
strict regulations to control tours abroad by clubs and 
individual athletes, stipulating that all invitations and 
financial arrangements must be made through the govern- 
ing bodies of the countries concerned, and with their 

S3 



ATHLETICS 

sanction, and limiting the period of residence abroad 
for which expenses might be paid to twenty-one days 
per annum, days spent in travelling or accompanying a 
national team being excluded. In Great Britain com- 
petition with foreign teams is controlled by the Athletes 
To and From Abroad Committee. Permission to com- 
pete abroad must be obtained from this Committee, 
which requires that the invitation, through the A.A.A., 
to a club or individual shall be sanctioned by the govern- 
ing body in the foreign country and that all payments 
be made through the A.A.A. Similarly, no foreigner 
may compete in Great Britain without a guarantee of his 
status by his governing body, and expenses may only 
be paid to such individual or to a team by permission 
of the A.A.A. 

Besides the Scandinavian countries, France may be 
considered as the pioneer in the sphere of international 
athletics. The first athletic meetings in that country 
were organised about 1886 by the Racing Club de 
France and the Stade Fran^ais, two clubs whose fame 
to-day is uneclipsed ; but it was a quarter of a century 
later before matches with Sweden and Belgium were 
begun, and only in 1921 was the fixture with England 
instituted. This match of three a-side in each of twelve 
events, points being scored on a 5, 3, i basis, with 3 
for the relay, has only once (in 1925) resulted in favour 
of France ; but on no occasion has the margin been 
large. In Olympic years the contest is not held ; but 
between the games it is the most important match in 
which England competes, and the competition for the 
" Coupe de Fraternit " always arouses the keenest 
enthusiasm in France. 

Switzerland and Germany engaged in a triangular 
international with France in 1926 ; and since that time 
France and Germany have held an annual match, in 
which the Germans have proved victorious. Despite 
these reverses, the French nation boasts many fine 
athletes and le sport is undeniably popular : one ventures 

54 



INTERNATIONAL ATHLETICS 

to suggest that with a slight modification of training 
methods and more inter-club competitions to encourage 
the rank and file her representatives will achieve even 
greater honour than their already not inconsiderable 
portion. 

Conspicuous amongst the revivalists has been the 
German nation. Debarred until 1926 from participating 
in open international competition, their representatives 
at the A.A.A, Championships and in the match with 
France and Switzerland in that year met with remarkable 
success, indicative of the new impulse animating the 
German people. No one who has travelled in post- War 
Germany can have failed to be impressed by the passion 
for physical culture and sport of all kinds ; and the 
splendid stadia, often erected as a singularly valuable 
type of War memorial, bear witness to the keen pursuit 
of athletics. 

Further evidence, if it be needed, is afforded by 
the new prominence given to physical culture in 
schools and colleges. The German Students Union 
has before it the ideal that every student shall be 
compelled to take physical exercise, that every school 
shall have a physical education department, and that 
representatives of these departments shall form a 
central body to organise and control inter -school 
matches and championships. A fine ideal if carried 
through sympathetically ; and one hopes that the zeal 
of those directing the movement, and of those responsible 
not only in schools but also in clubs and Universities, 
will not blind them to the fact that games cannot be 
mechanised and still retain their value, and that in- 
dividuality is vital in sport, which must remain a 
recreation, not become a semi-political activity. 

Before the War, track and field athletics had not been 
extensively practised in Germany, although one of the 
world's greatest middle-distance runners, the late Hans 
Braun, came from Munich. Since 1918 its devotees can 
be numbered by tens of thousands. The seven years 

55 



ATHLETICS 

of preparation before admission to the I.A.A.F. and 
international competition proved fruitful indeed, as the 
many brilliant successes and world's records of such 
champions as Dr. Otto Peltzer testify. It was in 1927 
that British athletes from the Polytechnic Harriers and 
the Achilles Club paid the first post- War visit to Ger- 
many ; and the meetings in which they appeared afforded 
much pleasure and an invaluable bond for the subsequent 
reunion at Amsterdam. From the British point of view 
and, one believes, the German also only one thing 
further is to be desired : that is, an annual international 
between the countries, or, if it be preferred, a triangular 
match, with France as the third contestant. 

Switzerland and Italy are also keen supporters of 
international athletics ; and the latter country, where 
walking is so popular, has a match each year with 
Hungary, and was host, in 1927, for the International 
University Games, which form a branch of the work 
of the International Confederation of Students (C.I.E.). 
This celebration, among students and ex-students up to a 
certain age, was renewed in Paris in 1928, Germany and 
Great Britain entering for the first time. Given a 
definite organisation, a strict age limit, and biennial 
meetings, this movement may become a useful adjunct 
to the work of the C.I.E. and an important feature of 
international athletics. For that the possibilities at- 
tached to such reunions of youth are real is evidenced by 
the meeting organised in Copenhagen in July 1927 by 
the Y.M.C.A., in which no fewer than 400 selected 
athletes from the Y.M.C.A. organisations in seventeen 
countries took part. 

The younger athletic nations, notably Hungary, 
Czecho-Slovakia and Poland, are enthusiastic and have 
achieved a high standard. The Hungarians are excellent 
all-round athletes who staged regular international and 
inter-club meetings even before 1914; and since the 
War teams from Oxford and Cambridge have twice 
visited Budapest. The educational activities of the 

56 



INTERNATIONAL ATHLETICS 

Czechs have been mentioned elsewhere, their system 
of Sokols corresponding in some degree with the 
institutions for Leibesiibung in Germany. Only the 
Sokols have a wider scope ; they are recruited from all 
classes of the population, and they organise athletics 
for women as well as men. In Poland, athletics is not 
only popular; it is a Government concern. In 1927 
a National Department for Physical Education was 
established. It was charged with the provision of stadia 
and instructors, and with the re-organisation of physical 
culture ; and its work has been supported by all, from 
the president down to the youngest novice in athletics. 

The Scandinavians hold their Landskamp ; and big 
club meetings, to which individual athletes from all over 
Europe are invited, are held annually in Oslo and 
Stockholm. This type of international meeting is, 
indeed, exceedingly prevalent on the Continent ; and 
another interesting type of international of recent 
innovation is the inter-city match, e.g. Berlin-Vienna, 
Budapest-Paris. 

The most astonishing progress has come, however, 
from Finland. Celebrated before the War on account 
of the magnificent performances of H. Kolehmainen, and 
the second place at Stockholm in the Fifth Olympiad, 
this country swept into prominence in 1924 when in 
the Paris games her representatives, headed by the 
remarkable Nurmi and Ritola, cleared the board in every 
track event above 800 metres, the cross-country and the 
Marathon. Cross-country running, it may be observed, 
was formerly almost the preserve of Englishmen ; but 
the Finns always used to beat them in the games, and in 
the annual international match between England, Scot- 
land, Ireland, Wales, France and Belgium, the French 
team has frequently inflicted defeat upon them too. 

Section 2. Asia and South America 

Before tracing athletic development in the Domin- 
ions and the United States, one may venture upon 

57 



ATHLETICS 

a prophecy based upon the visit to England in 1928 of a 
team from Waseda University, Tokio, which competed 
with the Achilles Club prior to the games, at which 
several of its members greatly distinguished themselves. 
The natural genius of the Japanese for field events is 
evident ; the inspiration afforded by these contests in 
Europe may lead to the creation of a new athletic 
" power." 

And not the Japanese alone of Eastern races have 
an interest in athletics, for since 1913 China and the 
Philippines have joined with Japan to hold Far-East 
Olympics, which deserve more than a passing reference. 
They are now a great force in the life of the East ; they 
have helped to bring together the people of three nations 
without rousing their racial antagonisms, and their scope 
may become yet wider ; they have encouraged the practice 
of physical culture among people who until recently 
knew little of open-air team games and certainly did not 
appreciate their value ; and they have strengthened 
the ties binding Asia to the Western world. 

After the formation of a Philippine Islands Amateur 
Athletic Federation, a Far-Eastern Championship Meet- 
ing was initiated in 1912 between Japan, China and the 
Philippines, and restricted to natives of those three coun- 
tries. The first set of games was held at Manila in 1913 
and won by the Philippine Islands ; the second at Shanghai 
two years later was won by the Chinese ; the third in 
Tokio, when the number of competitors had increased 
to 350 as compared with 175 at Manila, and when, as 
on the previous two occasions, the home team proved 
successful. 

Meetings were subsequently held biennially in each 
country in rotation, the last being at Shanghai in 1927, 
when Japan was the winner ; and the games have now 
been stabilised for every fourth year, beginning at Tokio 
in 1 930 and passing to Manila in 1 934, and it is proposed 
to invite the participation of British India, Java and 
Siam. The Far-Eastern A.A. is closely associated with 

58 



INTERNATIONAL ATHLETICS 

the I.O.C., which recognises the work done in the East 
and appoints one of its members as a special delegate 
to each celebration of the Far-Eastern games. 

The South American peoples have also taken seriously 
to sport, and now hold an Olympiad of their own. The 
fifth biennial South American Championships, as they 
are called, took place at Santiago, Chile, in April 1927. 
Chile (whose representative was second in the 1928 
Olympic Marathon), Argentina and Uruguay competed, 
and the Chileans proved successful by a narrow margin. 
Moreover, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador and Mexico have been 
represented at the Olympic Games. 

Section 3. The British Dominions 

Reverting to Britain and the Dominions, it has been 
already indicated that Irish athletics have led a chequered 
existence ; but the love of the game and particularly 
the field events has always remained strong in Erin, and 
for many years most of the records in the jumping 
and throwing events were held by Irishmen or Americans 
of Irish descent. The Celtic race has always possessed a 
natural aptitude for the high jump, hammer throw and 
shot putt, which may be partly attributable to the superior 
elasticity of Celtic muscle as compared with the Saxon. 
Certainly the throwing events have been more ardently 
practised by the Scots and Irish than by the Sassenach, 
and it is to the Scots that is due the modern method 
of throwing the hammer. But perhaps the most popular, 
certainly the most spectacular, feat of strength and skill 
in Scotland, at all events at the various Highland Games, 
such as those held at Braemar, Aboyne, Oban for many 
years past, is tossing the caber. 

Since 1921 the Irish Free State has had separate 
representation on both council and field in international 
affairs, and the sport is controlled by the National 
Athletic and Cycling Association of Ireland. Aided by 
two successful matches against the Achilles Club in 

59 



ATHLETICS 

1926 and 1927, when close contests roused Irishmen to 
heights of athletic enthusiasm never known before, 
Ireland competed with distinction both in the Triangular 
International of 1927 and in the Olympic Games of 
1928 ; and there can be no doubt that athletics is 
increasing in favour. Another innovation was the re-in- 
stitution in 1924 of the ancient Tailtean Games, organised 
on the lines of the Olympics, and for which the eligibility 
rule seemed to be the possession of one drop of Irish 
blood, so that a host of good citizens of other countries 
contrived to bring the first meeting, and also the second 
in 1928, to a decidedly happy issue. The third cele- 
bration is fixed for Dublin in 1931. 

Although the Scottish A.A.A. hold their own cham- 
pionships, they combine with England in international 
competition. The Highland Games are largely pro- 
fessional, and amateur athletics has only a limited 
following. The foundation of the Atalanta Club in 1925 
has done much, however, to stimulate interest. This 
club is open to past and present members of the four 
Scottish Universities, its primary object being to foster 
Inter-'Varsity athletics. In pursuit of this aim it has 
held matches with the Achilles Club and the I.V.A.B., 
and it has already achieved a leading position in Scottish 
athletics. 

The development of athletics in the United States 
and in the British Dominions beyond the seas has 
certainly kept step with and in the former outstripped 
that in Great Britain. In the Dominions, with their 
small and scattered populations, the extension of athletics 
is no easy matter. In the larger areas, such as Canada 
and Australia, only a few meetings can be organised 
each year, except among the citizens of each large town ; 
and this hinders the acquisition of the experience which 
only competition can provide. On the other hand, it 
prevents excessively frequent racing and its attendant 
dangers, staleness and exhaustion. Despite the handi- 
caps of distance, Canada, New Zealand, the several 

60 



INTERNATIONAL ATHLETICS 

provinces and States of South Africa and Australia, all 
hold annual championships, and there are Australasian 
championships for which New Zealand and Australia 
combine. Each of these Dominions and also India has 
separate representation in the Olympic Games, and has 
a good record therein, particularly Canada ; but they 
all unite with Great Britain to compete for the Empire 
against the United States of America in the relay match 
held immediately after the games. 

A proposal is now on foot to institute Empire Games, 
restricted to Great Britain, the Dominions, India and the 
Colonies. Hamilton in Canada has been suggested as 
the first venue in 1930, after which the games would be 
held every four years in different parts of the Empire. 
The scheme is certainly attractive, but it possesses 
several drawbacks which will probably prove insuperable. 
Such games cannot be regional ; they involve great 
expense and devotion of time in gathering the teams 
together. They cannot afford as much experience as 
the Olympic Games, which, incidentally, do much to 
foster the Empire spirit which these Empire Games are 
expected to promote ; and it would be lamentable if 
they were allowed to supplant the Olympic Games in the 
esteem of Empire athletes. Ardour for Empire Games 
among the members of the British Commonwealth ought 
not to blind those members to their responsibilities 
towards other nations. 



Section 4. The United States of America 

In America the year 1870 is regarded as marking 
the commencement of athletic interest, for although 
the New York Athletic Club was founded two years 
earlier, it did not hold its first athletic meeting which, 
incidentally, was the first in the country until 1871. 
Under the auspices of the N.Y.A.C. the first amateur 
championship of America was held in 1876 ; four years 
later the National Association of Amateur Athletes of 

61 



ATHLETICS 

America was formed, and became, in 1888, the Amateur 
Athletic Union of America. 

The A.A.U. controls athletics throughout the United 
States ; it is supreme on all questions of amateur status, 
records and licensing of meetings ; and it also controls 
a great number of other sports, including basket-ball, 
boxing, fencing, gymnastics, fives, walking, lacrosse, 
swimming and wrestling. It is divided into eight 
sectional groups, all of which organise annual district 
championships, among the most important being those 
held by the Western Conference A.A. since 1900, It 
is allied with the Inter-Collegiate Association of Amateur 
Athletes of America, and also with the Canadian and 
British A.A.A. 

After the formation of the N.A. A.A.A. the organisa- 
tion of the amateur championships was assumed by 
that body, and subsequently by the A.A.U. Besides 
holding senior championships the A.A.U. successfully 
introduced junior championships in 1900 for those who 
had not won a first place in certain open championship 
meetings ; it has instituted senior and junior cross- 
country championships, and also an open relay cham- 
pionship meeting. Further, owing to the severity of 
the winter in most parts of the country, athletics cannot 
be practised out of doors at that season ; and the Ameri- 
cans possess an almost unique institution, namely 
indoor athletics, for which the A.A.U. hold other 
senior and junior championship meetings at the end of 
February and middle of March respectively. Partly on 
account of the tracks, which are of wood and usually 
six or more laps to the mile, the events contested are 
somewhat unusual. The standard programme includes 
60, 300, 600 and 1000 yards races, 2 miles and steeple- 
chase, I mile walk, 70 yards hurdles, running high 
jump, standing high and long jumps, pole vault and 
shot. The A.A.U. is also guardian of the destinies of 
women's athletics, to which it applies strict rules as to 
medical examination, whilst no woman is allowed to 

62 



INTERNATIONAL ATHLETICS 

compete in more than three events in one day, or one 
if that is a race of over 1 10 yards ; and the Union pro- 
motes both indoor and outdoor championships for women. 

It is, perhaps, proper to point out at this stage a 
fundamental difference between athletics in America 
and in England. In England, athletes are drawn from 
all ranks of society, and the 'Varsity athletes, excellent 
though be their quality, are numerically in a minority. 
In America, the majority of athletes are University men, 
and their numbers are far in excess of those in England. 
It is this distinction which largely accounts for two 
features of American athletics which shall be presently 
discussed the prominence of University athletics and 
of the Inter-Collegiate Association, and the craze for 
specialisation. 

. Inter-College athletics in America had small begin- 
nings. Only three Universities competed at the first 
meeting at Saratoga in 1873; e ight in the following year ; 
thirteen in the third. Then in 1876 the I.C.A.A.A.A. 
was founded ; gradually acquired the support of all the 
leading Universities and Colleges of America ; and 
attained a position rivalling that of the much younger 
A.A.U. 

The Association, in fact, is an independent organisa- 
tion, governed entirely by its own constitution, bye-laws 
and rules of competition. Its objects are the protection 
and encouragement of its members, of whom there are 
over forty to-day. Membership of the I.C.A.A.A.A. is 
open to all Universities and Colleges of good and 
regular standing, the only stipulation being that every 
member must hold at least one track and field meeting 
each year, either between the students of the University 
or College holding the meeting or between those students 
and others. (Those Colleges which have not obtained 
admission to membership are now able to join the 
National Collegiate A.A., founded in 1922, which pro- 
motes annual outdoor and indoor championships.) The 
management of the I.C.A.A.A.A, is entrusted to an 

63 



ATHLETICS 

executive committee consisting of six members and the 
president, who must be undergraduates at the time of 
election ; they act for one year, and no University or 
College may have more than one representative on the 
executive committee. Their deliberations are assisted 
by an advisory committee of five, who must be alumni 
from as many Universities. 

The I.C.A.A.A.A, holds annually an outdoor track 
and field championship on the last Friday in May and 
the Saturday following ; an indoor championship on the 
first Saturday in March ; also a 'Varsity and Freshmen's 
cross-country run in October. 

The oldest and most important of these meetings is, 
of course, the outdoor championship, and it is to it that 
the majority of the members of the Association are 
attracted. They are entitled to start as many as five men 
in every event contested, the regulations providing that 
no man may compete unless he has completed a full 
year's residence, nor more than four times. The fifteen 
events are all standard, a 2-mile race taking the place 
of the English 3 miles, and the 220 yards low 
hurdles being the same as in the Oxford and Cambridge 
Sports. Points are. scored on a 5, 4, 3, 2, i basis : 
this marks a distinction from the Oxford-Cambridge 
practice of scoring on first places only. 

In the indoor meeting, instituted in 1922, the events 
are 70 yards dash and 70 yards hurdles (five flights), 
i and 2 miles, high, long and pole jumps, weight, 4 by 
880 and 4 by 440 yards relays, and a Freshmen's 
medley (880, 440, 220, mile); and the rules govern- 
ing eligibility and scoring are the same as for the 
outdoor meeting. 

These two great Inter-Collegiate Meetings are the 
climax of what in many cases are two distinctly strenuous 
seasons for the American undergraduate. The bigger 
Universities, such as Yale, Harvard, Princeton, Cor- 
nell, Pennsylvania and Columbia, hold a regular sequence 
of dual meets against each other, which resemble in 

64 



INTERNATIONAL ATHLETICS 

their intensity the annual Oxford-Cambridge Sports. 
Even the smaller Colleges may have two or three annual 
meets, both outdoor and indoor, and for Freshmen ; 
and the effect of this competition upon the standard of 
athletics is considerable. It inevitably develops the 
University athlete in a way that can only be attained in 
England by entry in open competition ; for the intra- 
mural meetings, which the College system permits at 
Oxford and Cambridge, possess nothing like the im- 
portance, and involve not a tithe of the competition, 
that do the American dual meets. In American Uni- 
versities, built up almost entirely upon the fraternity 
system (i.e. groups of about thirty men living together), 
intra-mural sport is impracticable ; were it not for the 
bias towards specialisation, excess and, sometimes, 
ultra-seriousness, one would recognise the Inter-Uni- 
versity matches as being not only necessary, but also 
beneficial. 

Not only in this respect is the American system at 
variance with the British. In the organisation of 
athletics there are differences from Oxford and Cam- 
bridge, where there is no official control on the part of 
the 'Varsity authorities. In most American Universities 
all athletic sports are either under the control of faculty 
committees or, indirectly, of the alumni who finance the 
games, and the undergraduate committees have little 
say. Unfortunately, at the beginning of the century 
the system became corrupt. Games were taken too 
seriously, alumni and undergraduates, and, of course, 
coaches dependent upon success for their appointments, 
desired victory at all hazards, and unscrupulous poaching 
of promising schoolboys and doubtful tactics in the 
games were evils which had to be checked. In 1906 
many of the Colleges, including Harvard, Yale, Prince- 
ton and Pennsylvania, agreed upon many reformatory 
changes and eligibility rules, which need not be further 
specified here, beyond mentioning that Freshmen were 
debarred from competition for a year, save against each 
E 65 



ATHLETICS 

other ; and the high standard and purity of competition 
ever since have been the object of much admiration. 
Nevertheless, there still exist problems to confront 
'Varsity athletics in America ; and the charge of special- 
isation continues to be made, not without some ground. 

It must be recalled, however, that the American 
undergraduate is differently situated from his English 
cousin. His time is more strictly apportioned ; he 
encounters more competition ; he is usually governed 
by a stern coach who details him to practise a particular 
event until he attains perfection. It is still natural for 
an American to put winning first : it is in the tempera- 
ment of a young nation. Consequently, he accepts this 
dictation, which no English undergraduate would 
dream of stomaching ; and one remembers the astonish- 
ment, quickly followed by appreciation, with which an 
Oxford-Cambridge team visiting Harvard and Yale was 
received when it was stated that they had no coach with 
them but were guided by their captain and trained them- 
selves. Of course, more acute competition, especially in 
field events, obliges Americans to specialise more in 
order to obtain places in their teams ; but even they are 
realising as the result of fraternising with English 
undergraduates that one may enjoy and excel in sport 
and still call one's soul one's own. 

It has been pointed out already that the majority of 
American athletes are University men, in distinct con- 
trast with the position in England. Many of these upon 
leaving the University are compelled to retire from 
competition owing to the exigencies of professional or 
business life ; and in consequence the number of clubs 
outside the Universities is relatively small. Those few, 
it must be observed, rank high ; and such clubs as the 
New York A.C., perhaps the most famous, as it is the 
oldest, have wielded a powerful and beneficent influence 
over the game, 

It was in fact through the match between the London 
A,C. and the New York A.C. in America in 1895, * n 

66 



INTERNATIONAL ATHLETICS 

which the home team swept the board, and the matches 
between Oxford and Yale in London (1894) and Cam- 
bridge and Yale in America (1895), ^ at ^e links be- 
tween the athletes of the two nations, which had already 
been forged by the sporadic visits of individual per- 
formers, including W. G. George and L. E. Myers, 
were cemented. In their subsequent history these Inter- 
'Varsity matches assumed a remarkable importance, 
particularly after the Great War when they played no 
mean part in drawing the two nations together, and a 
brief account of their progress is given here. 

In 1899 a joint Harvard and Yale team visited London 
and was defeated by Oxford and Cambridge by 5 events 
to 4 ; two years later in New York the Americans had 
their revenge, 6-3 ; and they won by the same margin 
in England in 1904, when their superiority in the 
sprints and field events outweighed the English strength 
in the longer distances. After rather a lengthy lapse, 
Oxford and Cambridge again entertained the Americans 
in 1911, and won 5-4, taking the sprints for the first 
time ; and since the re-institution of the meetings in 
1921 the match has become biennial in each country in 
turn. At the Harvard Stadium in 1921 the Americans 
overwhelmed Oxford and Cambridge by 8-2, and seven 
new records, including a world's record in the long jump, 
were established. Two years later, at Wembley, 
Oxford-Cambridge won by 6J 5^, the programme 
having been enlarged ; in 1925, at Harvard, there being 
a tie on first places. Harvard and Yale obtained the 
verdict on seconds ; and in 1927, at Stamford Bridge, 
Oxford and Cambridge again proved successful, this 
time by 7 events to 5. 

Meanwhile, a similar series of matches with Oxford 
and Cambridge had been inaugurated by Princeton 
and Cornell, Princeton had beaten Oxford at Queen's 
Club in 1920 by 6 events to 4 ; and when the joint 
Oxford-Cambridge team was in America in the following 
year they met and tied with a united team from Princeton 

67 



ATHLETICS 

and Cornell. Four years later, at Atlantic City, the 
English Universities won somewhat easily by 9^ events 
to 2f ; but in 1926, in London, they were successful 
by the narrower margin of 75. 

Before leaving this account of Inter-' Varsity athletics 
allusion should be made to the Penn relays, at which 
both Oxford and Cambridge have several times com- 
peted with success. The University of Pennsylvania 
was really responsible for the application of the relay 
idea to amateur athletics ; and their famous inter- 
collegiate and inter-scholastic relays were first held 
as long ago as 1895. ^ n I 9 I 4 ^ e most sensational 
race of its kind ever run was the 4 miles relay which 
the Oxonian, A. N. S. Jackson, won on the post 
from Louis Madeira of Pennsylvania, a victory even 
narrower than that so closely gained by Cyril Ellis 
over Lloyd Hahn in the 4 miles in the British Empire 
v. U.S.A. match in 1928. After the War Oxford and 
Cambridge sent across a joint team which won and set 
up a world's record for the 2 miles relay ; since 1922 an 
almost annual interchange of visits has occurred, in 
which the English Universities have had perhaps more 
than their meed of success. 

Finally, one may offer a few observations on the extra- 
ordinary prowess of American athletes, demonstrated 
time after time in Inter-'Varsity or Olympic contests. 
This prowess may be partly attributable to ability, to 
numbers, to coaching, to competition. It is enhanced 
by specialisation, to which the English genius is opposed, 
but which the American accepts under the strain of 
greater competition. Keenness must also be considered 
as partly responsible : few Englishmen have the patience 
or the enthusiasm necessary to spend their days in falling 
1 2 or 1 3 feet on to the back of their heads, or in being 
thrown by the hammer ! But probably more important 
than these reasons is the extent to which the sport is 
developed among schoolboys. The existence of school 
leagues, of high school games, of inter-scholastic cham- 

68 



INTERNATIONAL ATHLETICS 

pionships, flat, field and relay, and the coaching and 
eager spirit devoted to the encouragement of juvenile 
athletics explain much of the skill of the men. The only 
drawback is the danger of excess, especially for young- 
sters, and the possibility of their " burning out " before 
their time. If this be guarded against the system must 
be considered sound and not unworthy of adoption in 
this country. 



CHAPTER IV 

GENERAL PRINCIPLES 

FOR two authors who have had the temerity to 
adopt the simple title of " Athletics " for their 
book it is certainly fortunate that present-day 
usage has limited the scope of that term to a considerable 
extent. If, indeed, instead of applying merely to what 
is now known as " Track and Field Athletics," it stood 
as an abbreviation of " Athletic Sports," any generalised 
discussion on the subject would devolve into a treatise on 
most of the physical activities of the human race ! 

It is of interest to note the derivation of the word 
" athletic," in that it throws a light on what must, there- 
fore, be the inherent underlying principle of all sport. 
The word is derived from the Greek aOXta), meaning " to 
contend for a prize>" (a0Ao/z). In other words, com- 
petition appears to be the corner-stone of the temple of 
sport. But though the many and composite parts of 
this temple to-day embody a multitudinous variety of 
sports, the foundations still remain unchanged, and they 
are " athletics " in the more or less limited sense as 
stated above. 

For track and field athletics or, more simply, running, 
jumping and throwing must ever hold pride of 
place among all sports, not only on account of their 
seniority, but owing to the fact that they or their 
adjuncts form an essential part of all their subsequent 
off-shoots. We are told that one of the primary instincts 
of man is self-preservation, and undoubtedly one of the 
chief means by which this instinct of escape from danger 
is operated is by movement rapid movement combined 

70 



GENERAL PRINCIPLES 

with ability to overcome all possible obstacles in other 
words, running, jumping and throwing. 

And if, on this basis, our prehistoric ancestors were 
athletes, it is reasonable to suppose that by now one can 
recognise some underlying general principles of the 
sport. 

Let us take the key to these as " competition," the 
desire to prove oneself superior in some respect to one's 
fellow-beings. 

As a true ideal this, stated as a bald fact, does not, 
perhaps, appear to carry with it the right spirit. But on 
a slightly deeper consideration of the subject it must 
surely appear that to accomplish this desire in any degree 
the individual must be possessed of, and must develop, 
qualities not only physical but also intellectual and, 
even more important, moral the acquirement of which 
is a process that must in all fairness be held very largely 
responsible for the progress of civilisation. 

Perhaps a brief consideration of each of these various 
groups of* qualities " may serve to show wherein lies the 
intrinsic value of athletics. At the outset it must be 
fully realised that it is not any one of the component parts 
in particular but the composite sum of the ideals, the 
attributes and the characteristics of sport that make it 
of general interest and, it may almost be said, vital 
importance to the world to-day, 

Naturally, one's mind springs first to the consideration 
of the physical aspect, the aspect which, since athletics 
is basically a sport involving the exercise of bodily 
functions in various respects and various degrees, un- 
doubtedly is of primary concern. In view of a theory 
recently promulgated in the medical world the physical 
may be considered as having an even greater claim to 
initial recognition. A group of medical scientists have 
now evolved the hypothesis that the mind and even the 
spirit as entities separate from the body simply do not 
exist. We have in our bodies certain glands, known as 
the endocrine glands, or glands of internal secretion, 



ATHLETICS 

which, since their precise function is almost unknown as 
yet, are considerably exercising the minds of the medical 
world to-day. And it is now put forward that the mind 
by which term we attempt to express the outcome of the 
physiological processes of the brain's activity is devel- 
oped and controlled in response to the degree of func- 
tioning of these glands. And further, as our moral or 
spiritual side is the result of our powers of appreciation 
by the brain, that these glands are indirectly responsible 
for this part of our make-up also ! However this may 
be and there is much of proven fact in the theory 
athletics demand a physical basis. It is little use possess- 
ing all the desire and determination in the world to be 
an athlete if one is without the necessary physical 
attributes. But here the question may arise as to what 
one means by " necessary " ; this of course must always 
be a relative matter. We read of the " born athlete " 
the man who comes into the world with sufficient 
natural ability, sufficient physical perfection to make 
him always, from the start, superior to his fellows. 
But it is not to this minority that athletics brings its 
greatest gifts. It is to the average human being who 
is possessed of all his physical powers to no abnormal 
extent- and can, by participation in the sport, enhance 
these powers to the extent that he becomes gradually a 
better man. In other words, from the general point of 
view, it is as the means of raising the physical standard 
in toto that athletics has importance : it should be a 
" health-giver " the means whereby can come the 
fulfilment of that very old and hackneyed but very true 
and valued adage Mens sana in corpore sano. 

That this is indeed a very general expression of 
principle will be evident from a consideration of an 
interesting fact about which one has often been ques- 
tioned, namely the rarity of finding what are admitted 
as the world's greatest scholars, either of history or of 
to-day, displaying any particular physical prowess. And, 
again, how seldom has the noted athlete been a man to 

72 



GENERAL PRINCIPLES 

make his mark in the scholastic world. We think that, 
with a few exceptions, one is bound to admit the truth 
of these assertions, which superficially seem to point to 
an equilibrium being maintained between the mental 
and the physical. And surely it is this equilibrium, this 
balance that one hopes the sport of athletics will perfect. 
We would not be without our " super-athletes, " we 
could not be without our " super-brains, " but it is the 
average of the two and the betterment of that average 
that should be aimed at, as conducive to the general 
improvement of man. 

One wants the " healthy body " and the " healthy 
mind " to progress hand in hand, for the two are essenti- 
ally interdependent. The higher the universal standard 
of physical fitness can be raised, the greater is the 
possibility of finding suitable lodging-place for a gener- 
ally improved mental level. And thus one comes back 
to the foundation-stone of athletics. 

Any degree of proficiency in the sport demands a 
healthy, clean-living existence, a constant and careful 
attention to the bodily wants, and a progressive under- 
standing of the rudiments of hygiene and physiological 
processes. 

Naturally one is not supposing that the runner goes 
on to the track with any of these ideas circulating in his 
mind, but nevertheless his training and his active 
participation in the sport all tend to make him an^uncon- 
scious advocate of these essential principles of healthy 
community life. And it is by no means always an 
unconscious supporter. The majority of athletes have, 
at any rate at the back of their minds, the thought that 
beyond the amusement, the pleasure and excitement of 
the sport they are taking good, healthy exercise, and 
taking it because they realise that the results of physical 
exertion produce an added efficiency in their work, 
and an added happiness in their homes and their life 
generally. 

Athletics teaches a man how to make best use of his 

73 



ATHLETICS 

energy, how to apply the physical gifts which God has 
given him to the best of his ability, and this economic 
knowledge gained on the track becomes automatically 
applied to his business and his existence as a whole, thus 
tending in the aggregate to a higher standard of effici- 
ency. Similarly, the lessons of physical control and of 
physical co-ordination come to have a general application, 
whilst in themselves playing their part in the perfecting 
of that very beautiful machine of nature the human 
body. 

In their essentials the advantages of athletics accrue 
from the formation of habits and from the development 
of method. The more good habits one can form, the 
more bad habits one can break, the more efficient is one 
going to be. For what is a habit ? It is essentially 
something one has a possession incorporated in one- 
self, a definitely settled and fixed attribute, which, if good, 
is by way of being a permanent asset. So much is it part 
of oneself that it does not have to be worried about, and 
good habits are a gilt-edged security, a capital on which 
one can develop the business of life without care. The 
more good habits one can form, the further is it possible 
to accomplish this development, for they are the things 
we do or say or know automatically, leaving us free to 
explore further into whatever sphere of activity may be 
the particular one of the moment. And from the very 
beginning athletics engenders the formation of habits. 
Improvement only comes when one has mastered 
sufficient minor detail to allow an action to be performed 
almost subconsciously, whilst the rest of the body is free 
to concentrate on further means of expansion of effort. 

And method, too ! How much one learns from track 
training. Looking back it is possible to see how many 
hundred and one little things seemed to upset one, until 
one evolved one's own plans of action, until one learnt 
to conserve one's energy till the vital moment when 
every ounce of it was needed. Method and habit side 
by side they go, the one dependent on the other, both 

74 



GENERAL PRINCIPLES 

equally valuable possessions, both equally essential pro- 
ducts of the training and the exercise or athletics. 

Two more attributes that one may call physical should 
perhaps be considered before one's discussion merges 
imperceptibly into the mental side of the question. 

These are, firstly, stamina, and secondly, speed. 
Widely apart though they may be, these qualities are 
really closely related, for surely the maintenance of speed 
in movement calls for the existence of reserves in energy. 

And this opens up the whole question of fitness a 
subject more fully dealt with later, but here one wants 
just to appreciate the good athletics does in inculcating 
the principles of rapidity of action, which in everyday 
life become translated into rapidity of thought, and of 
the power of continuity of action, which applies just as 
much to all other aspects of life as it does to the physical. 

Though so far we have stressed the physical side of 
athletics, perhaps it is the mental side which holds the 
real appeal. Even the condition of perfect physical 
fitness finds its expression in that glorious feeling of 
well-being which only the trained athlete can truly 
appreciate. It is the knowledge of confidence in one's 
physical self rather than its actual existence that one 
appreciates. And, of course, despite all medical theories,, 
we are still bound to acknowledge to-day the mind as 
the master of the body. However perfect the anatomical 
and physiological functions of our body, they are useless 
without a mind to govern them ; however great the 
physical ability with which one is endowed, it will never 
reach its maximum possibilities without the assistance 
and control of the mind. By mind, of course, in this 
respect one means brain, and in particular, one's con- 
scious effort. For that movement is possible without 
conscious effort is shown by our breathing whilst asleep, 
or, better still, by our hearts, which never cease to move 
for the average threescore years and ten ! But it is in 
the development of our " conscious brains " that 
athletics plays such a big r6le, 

75 



ATHLETICS 

The physical habits and the physical method referred 
to above glean their importance chiefly from their auto- 
matic production of mental habits and mental method, 
for it is by these that the benefits of athletics become 
applied to our general lives. It is the mind which 
receives and appreciates the feelings and sensations pro- 
duced by the physical effort involved in athletic com- 
petition, and which translates them into such form that 
they are recognisable either as immediate perceptions of 
satisfaction or dissatisfaction, joy or disappointment, or 
as assets of knowledge applicable both locally to athletics 
or generally to one's whole life. 

Athletics demands from beginning to end patience 
and perseverance ; it, calls for the development of will 
power and of determination ; it teaches judgment and 
control ; and what six finer mental attributes could one 
ask for in any man than these ? Essentially the sport 
is one of self-discipline, and the boy who takes it up 
seriously is assured of a mental equipment which will 
stand him in invaluable stead in later years. 

Like most other things in life, athletics can only be 
made a success if one " gives one's mind to it," but the 
gift is mutual, for what one gives to atliletics with one 
hand is put back into the other, and often with interest 
added. The successful athlete is the man who knows 
not only what he is doing, but why he is doing it ; there 
must always be complete co-operation between mind and 
body if the optimum is to be achieved, and athletics 
forms an ideal meeting-ground where both can be 
suitably exercised in conjunction the one with the other. 

Patience and perseverance in acquiring technique, 
in continued honest training, and in dealing with one's 
instructors and fellow-athletes ; will power and deter- 
mination to overcome all difficulties, to put up with all 
transient set-backs, and to cultivate the knowledge of 
ability to succeed ; judgment and control in training, 
in learning to make the most of oneself, in appreciating 
one's individual advantages whilst at the same time 

76 



GENERAL PRINCIPLES 

knowing one's limitations, and in conquering either one's 
unnecessary nervousness or one's unwarranted self- 
assurance. All these qualities and many more are the 
material outcome of the existence of the all-important 
mental side of athletics. 

Very closely connected with this, perhaps really part 
of it, is what we Ijave called the moral or spiritual side 
of the sport. That it has such a side as a separate entity 
may be # a very controversial question, but we prefer to 
separate certain attributes as being really neither physical 
nor mental, though admittedly produced by the one and 
controlled by the other. What can athletics do with 
regard to the development of character ? Surely the 
points mentioned in the preceding paragraph must in 
themselves form a very sound basis, and yet there seems 
something even beyond this, something rather apart 
from the purely technical side of the question, something 
which is just the spirit of the Game. 

It is a side of which ordinarily we consciously think 
but little and talk less, and yet at heart it is probably the 
side of athletics we prize most deeply the playing of 
the game as a game for the game's sake ! In this respect 
we revert again to the underlying idea expressed in the 
word " athletic " namely competition. 

Cpnsure has been levelled at athletics as a sport in 
that it is essentially so selfish, so much a matter of the 
individual ; but whilst admitting that, until the relatively 
recent introduction of relay and team races, the team 
spirit was unavoidably lacking, it must in all fairness 
be reckoned that this very want was responsible for the 
production of very much that was admirable in the solo 
runner. Literally, he certainly has only himself to con- 
sider, but surely the development of the right attitude 
towards one's competitors is almost more difficult to 
achieve in perfection than the acquisition of the " team 
spirit." One does not wish in the slightest degree to 
belittle this spirit, for it has been the one thing wanting 
to make athletics as fine a sport as any yet invented, but 

77 



ATHLETICS 

it behoves us to appreciate the intrinsic good that can 
come to the individual from participation in the sport. 
It teaches him to be a " sportsman/' using that word in 
its finest and truest sense as the man who enters com- 
petition with a smile ; who accepts either victory or 
defeat, whichever may come his way, with the same 
smile ; who competes because he enjoys competing, 
enjoys the good, clean fun of it ; who possesses an 
abundance of self-confidence flavoured always with a. 
suitable modicum of modesty ; who knows that a race 
is never lost until it is won, and is always a hundred per 
cent, trier ; the man who appreciates the value of the 
sport in which he is participating outside its merit as a 
medium of training of mind and body, and who recog- 
nises the deeper values of associations formed, of assess- 
ing at their true worth the good points and the bad points 
of his fellow-sportsmen, and learning from both him- 
self ; who is ever ready to lend a helping hand to his 
weaker brethren, either in training or in competition ; 
the man who has pluck, and who never knows when he 
is beaten. 

Of such material are the true sportsmen made 
simply innate gentlemen of the track and it is a 
pleasant thought to realise that there are many to-day 
who embody almost every one of these characteristics. 

We have said " innate " because this side of an athlete 
is essentially a part of him as an individual these 
attributes are not really those that can be taught to a 
man ; but, on the other hand, they can be brought out if 
they are there by the associations of the sport, and there 
are many, also, that can be learnt from athletics, provided 
always the intrinsic moral basis is there on which to 
build. It is the case par excellence where example is 
better than precept, and it greatly behoves everyone who 
has the cause of true sport at heart to inculcate into the 
rising generation of athletes the ideals of the game to 
ensure in as far as is possible that every athlete is not 
only a man, but also a sportsman. 

78 



GENERAL PRINCIPLES 

And now, having to some small extent dissected into 
its component parts the sport of athletics, may one be 
allowed to assemble them all again and consider briefly 
the relation of the whole to some aspects of this world 
of ours to-day ? 

We have seen that athletics has what may be termed 
its physiological, its psychological and its sociological 
sides, and this statement alone is sufficient to prove what 
an all-encompassing sport it is. 

The physiological helps us to attain a higher standard 
of physical fitness, enabling us to take a fuller and more 
active part in the lives we have to lead, ensuring a brisk 
and vigorous youth, and a comfortable passage to a riper 
and richer old age than would otherwise be the case. 

The psychological gives us a mental training pro- 
ductive of sounder judgment, of greater receptive powers, 
of quicker intuitions and decisions, of a generally in- 
creased aptitude for the meeting of those tasks and 
difficulties which life presents to each and all of us. 

Whilst the sociological enables us the better to under- 
stand our fellow-men, to derive a greater satisfaction 
from ordinary things, to appreciate to a deeper and fuller 
extent the relative values of those intangible qualities 
of life which make one live rather than simply exist 
in other words, to form our characters and to realise the 
worth of the process of formation of character in others. 

To endow athletics with the production of all these 
characteristics may be considered by some to be some- 
what of an exaggeration, but one does feel that it, 
perhaps more than any other sport, offers great potential- 
ities, and this because of the individual element which, 
perforce, bulks so largely. It is the personal character- 
istics of the athlete which classify him, no matter how 
much the scientific aspect is grafted on to him. And it 
is in this respect that the sport becomes so important. 
For by influencing the individual for his general better- 
ment, so are we tending to improve the whole national 
standard, and, for that matter, the human standard. 

79 



ATHLETICS 

Thus athletics has come to be an integral part of a 
boy's education. It is realised that no amount of school 
work pure and simple will turn out the right type of man, 
if the qualities to be developed on the playing field are 
not catered for also. It is not by sitting at a desk adding 
up figures that a boy learns to become a man worthy of 
taking an adequate place in the hurly-burly of modern 
life. It is in the utilisation and development of his 
natural talent and individuality in the elementary sports 
of running, jumping and throwing that he learns to be 
a man that he learns control of himself that he learns 
his dependence on his fellows and yet the power of 
standing alone and, above all, that he learns to be a 
sportsman. 

The method by which this knowledge is acquired or 
instilled has become a matter of vital importance to 
educational authorities a matter that has of late in the 
reconstructional years since the War been very much in 
the minds of scientists and psychologists alike. For it 
is now being realised more fully than ever before how 
much the future of the youth of the world depends upon 
the complete fulfilment of the old quotation mentioned 
at the beginning " A healthy mind in a healthy body." 
One without the other tends towards the production of 
an inferior type of man. And hence one finds a world- 
wide movement to include in any educational curri- 
culum a standardised physical training programme run- 
ning parallel to the previously existing scholastic one. 

This to us in England, perhaps, seems no novelty, 
for we have now for so many years built up the tradition 
of sport that it automatically takes its place in the range 
of our life's activities. And for this reason perhaps it 
seems perfectly fair to reiterate what one so often hears, 
that Britain really is the " home of sport." And the 
sense in which this is said namely that it is rather the 
" spirit of sport " than achievement or superiority in 
sport is the very thing that gives it such immense 
value to us as a nation. 

80 



GENERAL PRINCIPLES 

Now that the idea has become so prevalent all over 
the world, it behoves us all the more to be broad-minded 
enough to endeavour to improve our standard by learning 
from those who have been so willing to accept the basis 
of that idea from us, to honour the spirit of the game 
which underlies every British sport. 

We have been discussing this in such general terms 
that its application to this particular book may not be 
immediately evident, but we feel sure that even the most 
rabid partisan of other sports will admit the greater 
applicability of pure athletics to the people as a whole. 

This national aspect of athletics is one of considerable 
importance and interest to-day. Every day one hears 
of the birth of athletics as a sport in one country, the 
revival of it in another, the growth of it in yet a third 
and slowly but surely the time is coming when the 
nations of the world will find a common meeting-ground 
in the athletic field, a meeting-ground where it is possible, 
if not probable, that relatively as much will be done to- 
wards the fostering of both national individuality and 
spirit, and at the same time international amity and under- 
standing, as is now done by diplomatic conferences and 
international congresses. 

This is admittedly an ideal, but an ideal that is possible 
of more and more fulfilment as time goes on, for with 
all their present disadvantages and difficulties one feels 
that the international athletic meetings of to-day are 
steadily producing the right international atmosphere; 
and what is more, this realisation is gradually dawning 
upon those in whose hands lies the national welfare of 
individual countries. 

Bearing in mind this widest of all possible applications 
of the underlying principles of athletics, it is pertinent 
to consider briefly the closely related subjects of amateur- 
ism and specialisation, and in this consideration it is 
essential to take the very broadest outlook with regard 
to these questions in view of the controversies which 
now so widely rage over them. 
F 81 



ATHLETICS 

From a purely athletic standpoint one appreciates 
equally and impartially the actual ability of a runner 
irrespective of whether he be amateur or professional. 
Nature's gifts are bestowed upon one individual human 
being more than another, regardless of what use he 
ultimately makes of them, and should he decide to use 
them as his means of livelihood that surely is his own 
particular concern. The trouble over this question has 
come in the drawing of the " amateur line/' though one 
would think it was really a very simple matter. If a man 
earns his living by athletics he is a professional, and 
probably perfectly content to be so ; if he earns his living 
in some other walk of life he is not a professional, pro- 
vided always he accepts the results of his achievements 
in competitions in the form of a tea-tray or a silver cup 
and never their equivalent cash value. If, however, he 
should receive financial remuneration indirectly from the 
sporty as, for example, in the cases of the coach and the 
athletic journalist, then for reasons very hard to com- 
prehend by any average man who is not possessed of a 
tortuous mentality, the former must according to 
present-day rulings forfeit his amateur status, whilst 
the latter is perfectly entitled to retain his surely a 
most anomalous position. 

The dissatisfactions of to-day come from these almost 
farcical limitations which bind down the definition of 
an amateur limitations the inevitable circumvention of 
which almost necessitates hypocritical subterfuges if the 
present-day world-wide interest in athletics is to be at 
all satisfied. 

This is by no means a plea for the spread of profession- 
alism. Actually the opposite is the point one wishes to 
make, but until such time as a much more liberal and 
broad-minded interpretation is allowed of the amateur 
status, it seems impossible that athletics will be able to 
attain to its greatest ideal. 

What one would advocate is the widening of the 
definition to the utmost limit, to allow the greatest 

82 



GENERAL PRINCIPLES 

possible participation in athletics reckoning it not as 
a sport to turn out the few super-men, but as a healthy 
recreation and exercise to produce the maximum number 
of fit human beings. 

The rather amusing aspect of the case to-day is that 
amateurism is tending all the while to a professional 
bias. Such actually is specialisation ! We have come 
to think of athletics far too much in terms of its great 
exponents, we feed on broken records, we look upon 
the Olympic Games, for instance, as the apex of all 
athletic achievement and in so doing we neglect and 
disregard the far more important, the far deeper aspect 
of the sport as a field for the development of the many 
to the betterment of mankind generally. 

Athletic achievement has become a god, a god whose 
clutching hands draw on the few for the eyes or the world 
to feast on, while forgetting if not actually repressing 
the many upon whom, after all, our general progress 
depends. The super-amateurs are tending to make the 
sport a business, and this is a bias that must at all costs 
be avoided if the game is to retain its ideals. 

It can fairly be said that this monopoly of the advan- 
tages offered by athletics is less evident in England than 
almost anywhere else in the world. This is due to our 
long acquaintance with the idea of taking sport as a 
game, the outcome of our peculiar national character- 
istics, exactly in the same way as these are elsewhere 
responsible for excessive specialisation in and com- 
mercialisation of athletics. 

The European countries, to whom athletics is, on any 
scale, a comparatively new proposition, have gone whole- 
heartedly into the question, have realised that definite 
good can accrue to the community from an organised 
and standardised participation in athletics, and have 
acted accordingly. The United States, having appreci- 
ated their various advantages, particularly geographical 
and financial, have set out to produce champions and, 
incidentally, have succeeded on a wholesale scale but 



ATHLETICS 

surely athletics in America has tended to become too 
much of a business, too much the end-all and be-all 
of many young men's lives instead of simply an 
advantageous side-line to those lives. The British 
Dominions, starting from the invaluable basis of the 
Mother Country's ideals, have suffered less ; the 
Eastern world is still relatively young as regards 
modern organised athletics ; and England, she follows 
somewhat lethargically (for luckily the old spirit of the 
game for the game's sake dies hard) in the path of 
the present-day business-like record-breaking cult of 
athletics. 

None are without their faults ; all are deserving of 
due praise ; but let us not, in the hurry and scurry of the 
struggle to produce ever greater and greater individual 
perfection, sacrifice or at any rate lose sight of the under- 
lying basic principles of athletics. 

We want our athletic " giants " just as we want our 
great " brains," but we want them as incentives and as 
examples, not simply as perfected mechanisms through 
which to advertise. We feel sure that those who have 
the cause of athletics most deeply a^ heart will endorse 
the opinion that if athletics are to retain their very 
definite ideals they must be thrown open more and more 
to the average man to all men ! And surely enough, 
in the process, the great athletes will still be found, 
without the selfish hot-house production by to-day's 
specialisation methods. 

The sport must be part of youth's education, it must 
be used to develop the right kind of body governed by 
the right kind of mind, and embodying the right kind 
of ideals. 

Athletics is a sport essentially for the millions, and 
only through working in the direction of rendering it 
available to the millions can it be enabled to fulfil the 
part for which it is so eminently suited, the part of a 
power for good in the general improvement of mankind. 



CHAPTER V 

TRAINING AND EQUIPMENT 

Section i . Training 

IT is natural to suppose that any authors embarking 
upon the discussion of an already controversial topic 
do so with a certarin amount of trepidation. With 
regard to " Training," however, over which has raged, 
perhaps, more heated, persistent and unnecessary con- 
troversy than over any other aspect of athletics, we state 
frankly that we are daunted by no such anxiety ; and 
this because in the subsequent pages devoted to this 
question we have endeavoured to express all our 
opinions upon the simple basis of sound common sense ! 
We contend that for the athlete who trains himself, 
for the trainer of athletes and also for the writer upon 
training, common sense is the fundamental basis upon 
which success depends. Approached from the broad- 
minded point of view, training in all its multitudinous 
aspects resolves itself into a relatively simple problem. 
Common sense has led to the realisation that with regard 
to training the working unit is the individual, and that 
every man must evolve and pursue his own system; 
common sense has brought about the abolition of those 
hard-and-fast rules of right and wrong and those ancient 
shibboleths which rendered training in bygone days a 
period of trial and tribulation. Common sense has shown 
that the mind requires training as well as the body ; 
common sense has demonstrated the value of applying 
scientific methods and research to training in theory 
and in practice, and common sense has taught us that 
to every still existing rule there are exceptions. 



ATHLETICS 

Training is most satisfactorily divided into general and 
special. With the latter department we do not intend 
to deal here, as under each separate event described in 
subsequent chapters will be found comments and sug- 
gestions relative to particular training methods for that 
event. It is of the subject of general training that we 
wish to treat by a consideration of the underlying general 
principles, by a short survey of the more important 
details of the question, by a few words in regard to those 
important people in this connection trainers and by 
a brief glimpse at some more pertinent medical and 
scientific aspects. 

i. General Considerations. What does one mean by 
training in its general sense ? Let us begin with the 
truism that for each living human being there is a set 
definite level of physical and mental fitness wh'ch he 
maintains almost automatically, apart from such un- 
accountable contingencies as severe illness or accident, 
according to his or her own particular environment, 
heredity and conditions of living. This may be called 
the threshold level and of course is subject to wide varia- 
tion according to the individual. Stepping one way from 
this threshold comes loss of health and ultimate illness ; 
stepping the other comes the elementary stage of train- 
ing training in its most general sense, by which is 
implied a definite ordering of one's ordinary everyday 
life. This means that from a health point of view the 
conditions of one's life are consciously altered and 
ameliorated within that particular range permissible to 
each individual. In other words, instead of living an 
ordinary and possibly slipshod life, one makes conscious 
efforts deliberately to live a healthy life to as great an 
extent as means and circumstances permit. These 
conscious efforts form the rudiments of training. By 
them one attempts to avoid excesses of any sort, to 
develop habits of cleanliness and care, to devote a certain 
amount of time and attention to the improvement of one's 
physical and mental condition, to give some study to the 

86 



TRAINING 

theoretical aspects of the psychological and physiological 
processes of one's mind and body, to practise a certain 
amount of self-denial whilst at the same time engendering 
a spirit of genuine cheerfulness, to be regular, systematic 
and thorough in a word, to lead the " simple life.'* 

For the athlete this level of physical fitness should be 
his minimum that is, he should never be out of training 
in this sense, for between seasons of actual competitive 
effort he should never drop to his threshold value, which 
amounts definitely to " going soft," but must lead the 
regular healthy existence discussed above. Then at any 
time he is prepared, within a short but definite interval, 
to get fit for actual track competition. And this process 
of " getting fit " from the already generally sound 
physical condition consequent upon his leading an 
average healthy existence constitutes training in the 
more particular sense as applied to the athlete. It is a 
process by which the already fit body and mind, capable 
of fulfilling all their functions truly and well under 
ordinary normal conditions of life, are prepared to meet 
the excessive demands made on them by the sudden or 
rapid production of the maximum output of energy as 
required by participation in athletics, and, furthermore, 
to render this production as economic an expenditure as 
possible by the development of that perfected co- 
operation of mind and body which is " co-ordination." 

The athlete's training, then, aims at the highest 
possible degree of combined physical and mental 
efficiency. It is the means by which the healthy indi- 
vidual is polished up into the racing athlete. This aim 
is to be achieved essentially by exertion physical and 
mental that is, by following out the old maxim that 
" practice makes perfect." But practice to produce 
perfection must be persistent and persevering ; it must 
involve close and meticulous attention to all the varied 
details of training technique ; it must be given thought, 
i.e. a man must learn not only what he is doing but also 
the why and wherefore of it ; it demands much patience 

87 



ATHLETICS 

and not a little self-denial ; and of exertion both quantity 
and quality. Admittedly the golden rule of training is 
" Never overwork/' leave every real exhaustive effort to 
actual competition ; but, on the other hand, it is almost 
as bad a sin to do too little. It is necessary to begin 
slowly and steadily and work up until the optimum 
amount of exertion for any particular individual as 
nearly as possible coincides with his possible maximum. 
And having reached that stage do what has to be done 
well, do it thoroughly, do enough of it and then be done 
with it. No training course should ever be attempted 
in haphazard fashion, but always made to follow a 
definite schedule. By such systematic and progressive 
methods unnecessary expenditure of energy is avoided 
and quantity with quality becomes more and more a 
feasible achievement. 

Let it not be imagined from the above description 
that training is a strictly rigorous process, not particu- 
larly conducive to happiness in fact, rather a time of 
trial altogether. In the olden days this was undoubtedly 
so, as the ancient history of training tells us. The Greeks 
used to segregate their chosen athletes and put them 
through a most arduous course of self-denial and self- 
discipline for months before some particularly big 
competition. Figs, cheese, bread and meat formed the 
staple articles of their diet, whilst their exercises in- 
cluded such astounding performances as bending iron 
rods, carrying and lifting heavy weights, and even tam- 
ing bulls ! though, oddly enough, they were permitted 
unlimited supplies of alcohol. Coming to more recent 
times, when athletics about the middle of last century 
became an organised sport, training systems were even 
more rigid, in fact were often definitely injurious and 
cruel, and even consumption of fluids was reduced to an 
almost impossible degree, whilst the various deadly ills to 
which the prospective athlete's body was evidently then so 
prone were scotched by most drastic methods, of which 
emetics and severe purges were amongst the kindest. 

88 



TRAINING 

To-day, however, training methods seem definitely 
to have reached an epoch of enlightenment. Though 
some of the old myths and superstitions are dying hard, 
the general tendency is to accept no set rules for training, 
but to treat each individual on his merits, working always 
on that ever-essential basis of common sense. Every 
athlete presents a separate and distinct problem, the 
solution of which as regards training methods he himself 
or his trainer will only find after careful study and 
investigation. It is obvious that there can be no panacea 
for all the ills of lack of good condition and for all types 
of men. The little man and the big man, the strong 
man and the weak man, the dull man and the intelligent 
man, the nervous man and the stolid man each and all 
have their own particular requirements. They can all 
ultimately attain to the same end the highest possible 
degree of physical and mental efficiency but they must 
travel there by various routes, each route suitable to the 
type concerned, and hence the foolhardiness of expressing 
any dogmatic opinion upon some particular point in 
training or, for that matter, the whole of it. 

The mental side of training is one which has become 
appreciated a great deal more of recent times, and a 
highly important side it undoubtedly is. The body is 
really the servant of the mind, and hence, however 
strenuously one attempts to improve the condition of 
the former, unless the latter is suitably attuned to the 
effort but little will result. It is vital that the athlete in 
training should cultivate, if he does not already possess, 
the happy, contented disposition. Worry is a factor 
which must as far as possible be completely eliminated, 
and the successful athlete should be a cheerful soul, who 
gets great pleasure out of living for sixty seconds every 
minute. Anxiety is, of course, another thing, and 
though usually anxiety does not amount to actual fear, it 
should be conquered to as great an extent as* possible : first, 
because it is very often the outcome of over-indulged 
introspective faculties and excessive imagination and 



ATHLETICS 

anticipation ; and secondly, because it necessarily involves 
a loss of nervous energy, all of which is doubtless 
urgently required elsewhere. Closely related to the 
subject of anxiety is that peculiar phenomenon known 
by the picturesque terms of " the needle " and " getting 
the wind up." It is a feeling appreciated by the athlete 
before some important or, with some, before any 
contest. The length of time before varies greatly with 
the individual temperament, as do also the relative 
amounts of the two essential factors of the sensation, 
excitement and nervousness. The former is an asset in 
that it provides that most necessary eagerness, that 
feeling of being " on the toes," that means so much at 
the start of any race. The latter is distinctly a drawback, 
and is usually an indication either of insufficient or un- 
satisfactory training, or of too much training, i.e. stale- 
ness (of which more will be said anon), with its conse- 
quent lack of self-confidence. And self-confidence of 
the right sort is an asset which the athlete cannot afford 
to be without. It is primarily the outcome of persever- 
ing conscientious practice, as will be stressed in sub- 
sequent chapters dealing with the particular events. 
Nervousness, on the other hand, leads to a wasteful 
dissipation of energy, accompanied very often by an 
equally disadvantageous sensation of chilliness, the 
effects of which will be obvious almost before the gun is 
fired. To counteract in some degree the ill-effects of 
" wind up " and also, incidentally, to enhance all the 
good done by training, one cannot do better than 
recommend the practice of having an understanding 
friend at hand. 

The mental side of training involves also the cultiva- 
tion of self-discipline and will power, which find their 
expression in what we recognise as pluck. This, of 
course, does not imply that the life of the athlete in 
training must in any way correspond to the rigorous 
existence of the ascetic, but simply that he must learn 
to know himself, to become the master of his own 

90 



TRAINING 

destiny. Furthermore, there must be developed powers 
of rational judgment and of relative appreciation of the 
things one sees and hears. For instance, when listening 
to a trainer, or when watching an expert exponent of 
some particular event, one must develop the faculty of 
weeding out that which is useful to oneself and that 
which is simply the peculiar eccentricity of the person 
concerned. In other words, mind and body must be 
trained side by side, for just as important as the physi- 
cally fit body is the clear-thinking, capable brain. 

2. Detailed Considerations (a) Diet. The ques- 
tion of food in training is probably one of the most 
worked-to-death subjects of controversy in all the many 
and various considerations of training. Hence we deal 
with it first, and before entering into detailed discussion 
on the matter we should like to submit our opinion that 
the answer to all questions relative to training diet falls 
simply under three heads common sense, regularity and 
individual preference. On this basis the subject becomes 
simplicity itself. Food fulfils certain vital functions. 
We therefore need food. What food is a matter 
entirely for the individual to decide for himself; but 
when and how he takes this food are matters governed 
by general principles of common sense. 

Let us briefly consider the component parts of an 
ordinary diet. It consists of proteins, carbohydrates, 
fats, salts, vitamins and water. The proteins or meaty 
foods (e.g. eggs, fish and meat itself) subserve two highly 
important functions. They provide energy, and as 
athletics demands a goodly supply of this they are 
necessary foods, and almost more important, they re- 
place the waste in the actual tissues. It is doubtless 
because of these two valuable usages that meat became 
the staple factor of an athlete's diet. In past days this 
idea was carried to excess, and the predominance of 
proteins in the modern athlete's diet is still very pre- 
valent. It must always be remembered, however, that 
an excess of this class of foodstuffs places a heavy and 

9' 



ATHLETICS 

even dangerous strain on the liver and the kidneys, 
which are chiefly responsible for its satisfactory 
disposal. 

**The carbohydrates or starchy foods (e.g. bread, 
potatoes, cereals, bananas, oatmeal, biscuits, etc.) are, 
since the athlete wants most of all to derive energy from 
his diet, really the best foods, for by virtue of their com- 
paratively more simple absorption and assimilation by 
the body they are capable of the production of the 
maximum energy in the minimum time. This accounts 
for the popularity of sugar, which comes in this class, 
taken a short time prior to competition. 

The fats, as exemplified by butter, milk, cream, cheese, 
etc., are also valuable foodstuffs, in that they also produce 
energy. But since they are assimilated and incorporated 
in the body's tissues more slowly and with more difficulty 
they do not form such a ready source of supply as the 
two previous groups. They act rather as providing a 
reserve store of energy which may be called upon in case 
of need, when the more available supplies provided by 
carbohydrates and proteins have been exhausted. 

Salts and vitamins (in fruit, which also contains sugar, 
and in vegetables particularly) are also necessities, 
though required in relatively smaller proportions. 

Water, on the other hand, is required in plenty. The 
fact that it is possible for the human body to subsist on 
water alone for practically a month shows how vitally 
important this item of diet is. In contradistinction to 
the ideas prevailing towards the end of last century, it 
is now realised that the supply of water to the athlete 
should be unlimited. It is an excellent plan to start the 
day on rising with a glass of water, and to end it similarly 
on going to bed, and in the meantime, but not at meals, 
when it simply serves to dilute the gastric juice to an 
unnecessary extent, to drink all one wants. It is prefer- 
able that water should be taken rather in many short 
drinks than in a few large ones, for the latter tend to 
dilate and distend the stomach, which, besides the bad 

92 



TRAINING 

local effect, may, by pressure on the thoracic organs, 
cause trouble with the respiratory and circulatory 
functions. Water is a necessity not only for its bene- 
ficial effect in generally flushing out the system, but 
also because it serves to replenish the supplies of the 
body fluids, through which, around and between the 
individual cells of our bodies, take place all our vital 
physiological processes. 

The old idea of an athlete's diet has been briefly 
mentioned above an excessive amount of meat un- 
accompanied by vegetables and usually partnered by 
stale bread the whole combined with a minimum of 
fluids. Luckily a more scientific and broad-minded out- 
look to-day has done away with such a slur on man's 
intelligence. We now realise that the best diet for ah 
athlete is a mixed diet, embodying all the above constitu- 
ents in such proportions that they appeal to the indi- 
vidual : for the best guide to a suitable food is appetite. 
If a man likes his food, it will do him good. Similarly, 
the best guide to optimum quantity is hunger. As long 
as a man is hungry he has not had too much, and average 
common sense will naturally advocate a policy of modera- 
tion. The athlete must avoid indigestion at all costs, 
for this means not only waste of energy which might 
well be applied elsewhere, but also the risk of similar 
detrimental effects to these mentioned in considering 
the drinking of large quantities of water, namely 
gastric distention and dilatation. As further aids to 
satisfactory digestion one should attempt always to 
follow out those two very sound old dicta " eat slowly " 
and " chew well " and to this may be added the 
advice of, when possible, resting after a meal and thus 
giving the stomach a chance to do its job without 
interruption. 

Having thus shown the advantages of a diet so 
balanced as to make good the daily tissue losses and 
to provide suitable supplies of energy and with the 
changes so rung as to appeal to the individual taste there 

93 



ATHLETICS 

only remains the consideration of the third primary 
principle regularity. What a meal consists of is really 
not nearly so important as when it is taken. We believe 
that three reasonable and regular meals a day are ample 
for any man in training. On the day of competition the 
same policy should be adhered to with discretion. It 
is equally foolish to run on an empty stomach as on an 
overloaded one. Previous to a race, a moderated meal, 
consisting of food known to agree with one (e.g. eggs, 
steak, fish, stewed fruit), with perhaps a little less liquid 
than usual, and sufficient time allowed for satisfactory 
digestion at least two hours is what is required, while 
if anything is needed between races, such mild stimulants 
as tea, coffee or some meat essence are the best to fall 
back upon. 

Finally, in training never worry about the details of 
diet. Follow the dictates of appetite, use common sense, 
and stick to regular hours. 

() Smoking. If all the pros and cons of the smoking 
habit from the athlete's point of view be reckoned up, 
even the confirmed admirer of My Lady Nicotine will 
probably admit that the latter outnumber the former by 
a rather large majority. Undoubtedly there have been, 
and still are, men who can continue to indulge their 
smoking propensities and yet produce remarkable and 
first-class athletic performances. But as ever comes the 
question, Would not these men have been even more 
wonderful had they denied themselves this luxury ? 
If in a certain few cases the answer to this may be 
definitely " No ! " these, nevertheless, must form a 
very small minority indeed. Generally speaking, one 
cannot see anything good coming to the runner from 
smoking. The loss of efficiency due to this habit has 
been estimated at various figures ranging from T V per 
cent, to % per cent. ; and even accepting the minimum, 
the loss over 100 yards is going to be more than 3 inches, 
which same small distance has accounted for the win- 
ning and the losing of many a good sprint race, 

94 



TRAINING 

whilst relatively over half a mile the loss will, even 
at the lowest estimate, be the best part of a valuable 
yard. 

Some, of course, may maintain that such figures, 
derived from a more or less purely empirical basis, are 
misleading, but when one adds to them the known 
pharmaceutical actions of nicotine, then the balance 
must definitely sway against smoking. For nicotine 
acting on the heart produces both a quicker and less 
effective beat, and also a loss of recuperative power in 
heart muscle, following severe strain. It acts on the 
nervous system by blunting one's powers of appreciation, 
an effect particularly marked in the case of the eyesight 
if smoking is at all excessive. Again, the carbon monox- 
ide gas produced in smoke has a greater affinity for the 
haemoglobin of our red blood corpuscles than has oxygen, 
and hence in the smoker who inhales there is a relatively 
smaller oxygen-carrying capacity for his blood, and, as 
will be shown later, less oxygen means less efficient and 
less prolonged muscular work. Whilst, finally, nicotine 
tends to produce a jaded palate and lack of appetite, with 
the ultimately inevitable sequelae of gastritis and in- 
digestion. 

This, surely, seems a heavy enough indictment to 
prefer against any habit, especially when, on the other 
side of the balance-sheet, one can put only a by no means 
universally accepted sedative effect in times of stress and 
nervousness. 

However, the habit not only exists but flourishes, and 
in this respect one must put in a word of warning which 
applies equally well to all bad habits. The process of 
breaking them must always be gradual, for in the case 
of the inveterate smoker a sudden cessation of his 
customary practices may bring evil effects of which 
irritability and insomnia are but two of the more 
outstanding. 

Into a discussion on the relative merits and demerits 
of cigarettes and the pipe we do not intend to enter, 

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ATHLETICS 

except to state that any alternative is preferable to the 
pernicious habit of" chain-smoking " of cigarettes. 

In general, then, do not smoke ; if you must smoke, 
smoke a pipe ; if you cannot, do not inhale your cigar- 
ettes, and let these be as few as possible. 

(c) Alcohol. Any excessive indulgence in alcohol 
is, for the athlete, always and definitely bad. The idea, 
which still finds favour in some quarters, of an occasional 
thoroughly good break in this direction from the strict 
routine of training is a fallacy as, indeed, is any measure 
which has not as its groundwork moderation. With 
regard to any indulgence in alcohol at all, as usual, one 
.cannot afford to be dogmatic, but this, like smoking, is 
usually simply a habit, and for the man in training, if not 
a bad, at least not a good habit. 

We have already mentioned two extremes of more 
ancient times in connection with this question the 
Greeks, who allowed the alcoholic cravings of their 
athletes the fullest satisfaction, and the stalwarts of the 
middle of last century, who not only refused to allow 
any alcohol at all, but as far as possible prohibited any 
fluids whatsoever. One hopes that to-day the common- 
sense principles of studying the requirements of the 
individual are indications of a happy mean having been 
reached. There do definitely seem to exist those people 
who, in training, are all the better for their daily pint of 
beer or glass of wine, which seems to act as a tonic, whilst 
in the case of beer, some actually put forward as an 
excuse the small food value which it possesses. But one 
feels sure that, apart from exceptional cases and con- 
ditions, similar remarks apply as were made concerning 
smoking. 

Do without alcohol altogether if possible, and if it 
must be taken, let it be a minimum quantity. In cases 
of illness and, as will be mentioned later, stateness, 
alcohol in moderation probably has its place, but it 
should always be remembered that, like anaesthetics, 
which, incidentally, belong to the same group of drugs, 

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TRAINING 

alcohol, though temporarily an excitant, is always 
essentially a depressant to bodily functions. 

(cT) Sleep. Of all the essentials of a good course of 
training, sleep ranks with the highest. One quite often 
comes across the man who says that whatever liberties 
he takes with himself in other respects, the one thing 
that tells on him immediately is lack of sleep. And this 
is easy to understand when one considers that during 
sleep the activity of all the vital physiological processes 
is depressed to a minimum, and quietly and gradually 
the body is able to compensate for the strain of the pre- 
ceding day, whilst at the same time laying up a store of 
energy for the morrow. 

It is the rest and relaxation, not only of the body as a 
whole, as we consider it, but of all its individual systems 
and mechanisms, which are the important factors in 
sleep. In this respect the value of a daily hour taken off 
for relaxation, though not necessarily for sleep, and this 
particularly on a day of important competition, cannot 
be overstressed. 

Much discussion has occurred over the actual length 
of time one should sleep. This really is of small import-^- 
again it is a matter for the individual but a very useful 
average is eight hours, with as much of it as possible 
before midnight, providing one qualifies this dictum 
with the observation that when one wakes naturally one 
should get up. Waking is Nature's tip to us that the 
body is ready to function normally again, and it should 
be borne in mind that oversleeping, especially if it 
becomes a habit, has almost as detrimental an effect on 
the athlete as lack of sleep. 

But one more word is necessary with regard to sleep, 
and this is to point out that sleep without fresh air is 
almost as pernicious to the athlete as no sleep at all. 

(e) Exercises. Though exercises pertaining to each 

particular event are discussed more or less in detail under 

corresponding chapters, we have felt that exercises in 

general are of such great importance in any training 

G 97 



ATHLETICS 

syllabus as to demand inclusion in these general con- 
siderations. 

By exercise one implies muscular exertion outside the 
sphere of the particular sport for which one is training. 
How necessary this was to the athlete was fully appre- 
ciated by the ancient Greeks, as has been pointed out 
above, who insisted on those in training performing most 
arduous tasks. 

As regards the time in the athlete's daily routine 
during which exercises should be indulged in, one 
strongly advocates the ten minutes or so before breakfast, 
whether devoted to actual exercises or to a short brisk 
walk, and especially if after a cold bath, which just serves 
to put one's circulation into fine working order. Nothing 
in any way strenuous should, however, be attempted on 
an empty stomach. Again, the few minutes before bed 
at night are good, whilst if no actual athletic training is 
being done on any particular day, some part of the 
afternoon of that day should be given up either to a walk, 
the playing of certain other games such as fives, squash 
or tennis, or a visit to a gymnasium. 

Of all exercises, walking probably finds the most 
general application. It is, after all, Nature's primary 
co-ordinated muscular effort, apart perhaps from crawling, 
and walking in some form or other is of advantage to 
every type of athlete. It involves the use, without strain, 
of almost every muscular group in the body, including 
the very important respiratory muscles. We are inclined 
to think that the natural breathing exercises coincident 
upon walking are all that is required in this particular 
line, and that the so-called set " breathing exercises " 
tend rather to the production of a chest of fixed capacity, 
which, of course, is not what is wanted in the athlete who 
is preparing himself to meet some sudden strain. 

Walking also automatically necessitates the consump- 
tion of a valuable quantity of fresh air, and at the same 
time is a very sane and reasonable means of reducing any 
excess of weight. 



TRAINING 

Apart from walking, one may "mention among many 
others such forms of exercise as skipping, running up 
stairs, dumb-bells, the " hundred up," and physical jerks 
generally as being of universal application to the athlete 
in training, whilst the practice of some definite running 
action either inside or outside (" limbering up " pre- 
vious to a race) is of particular value. 

Under this heading a word may be said of dancing, 
which, though in itself by no means a bad form of 
occasional if somewhat tiring exercise, is unfortunately 
so generally associated with both close, heavy, smoke- 
laden atmosphere and also lack of sleep that it can hardly 
be recommended in training. 

(/) Warmth. It will be found throughout succeed- 
ing chapters that time and time again we stress the very 
great value of maintenance of bodily warmth. This is 
simply because all physiological processes and from the 
athlete's point of view particularly those of the muscular 
system are stimulated to greater degrees of activity by 
this maintenance of an optimum body heat. In training 
and in competition it is equally necessary to ensure that 
one keeps warm. And even in one's daily life the taking 
of reasonable precautions against inclement weather and 
the wearing of suitable clothing, which in general should 
be light and airy to permit of the skin carrying out its 
normal functions. All these are points worthy of con- 
sideration by the man in training. During his actual track 
training every opportunity should be taken to absorb all 
the sunshine available, and a really warm sun should be 
the only excuse for loitering about during practice. In 
competition it must be remembered that one has to 
combat, as well as any actual existent cold, that sub- 
conscious sensation of chilliness which may often be so 
worrying. Rubbing, towelling and limbering up all have 
their uses in the production of a quicker circulation and 
a consequent increased heat production, whilst common 
sense will warn the athlete against standing about with 
the minimum of clothing on either in the dressing-rooms 

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ATHLETICS 

or on the track, and against being bare-footed on cold 
concrete floors. 

(g) Baths. A well-known trainer of recent years has 
called baths " God's own remedy for all the after-effects 
of a race " and we are inclined to agree with him. 
Baths and cold baths unless there is some very good 
reason against them apart from ensuring an ever- 
important cleanliness, serve as a means of increasing 
muscular tone and of improving circulation. A morning 
cold bath and a warm bath followed by a cold shower 
after actual exercise or competition are very good per- 
manencies in the athlete's daily routine. Actual swim- 
ming is not advocated, but a dip in the sea is most highly 
invigorating and advantageous, providing, of course, it 
is not taken on the day of a race. 

(K) Massage. Again we come to a subject over 
which rages a seemingly never-ending controversy. 
Massage, ruling out its use in cases of minor injuries, 
presumably finds its applicability in improving circula- 
tion and producing a so-called " looseness " of -the 
muscles. That these ends can be attained by other 
methods, as, for instance, walking and exercise gener- 
ally, by suitable baths, etc., has already been pointed out. 
And we feel inclined to think that massage is rather an 
over-rated process, except in certain definitely limited 
fields. At the very beginning of training it is probably 
of value, on a very cold day previous to competition it 
may be the most suitable way to achieve the desired end 
of maintaining body heat, but as a routine measure day 
after day, before and after exercise, it is to be deprecated, 
for whatever results it may produce can be obtained with 
so much more general advantage by the more natural 
means of actual running, baths and good towelling, 
whilst any psychological effect it may have becomes 
blunted by continued repetition. And if massage is 
resorted to, it should always be put into the hands of a 
skilled masseur, for bad methods may be definitely harm- 
ful and produce a slack, toneless condition of the body 

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TRAINING 

musculature, which is the very last thing the athlete 
wants. Massage must never be rough, but rather a very 
gentle, steady rubbing always in the direction of the 
heart, and with the muscles being massaged completely 
relaxed. The fallacy still seems to hold credence that 
the various embrocations and liniments used by masseurs 
are able to penetrate the skin and produce some definite 
medicinal effect, but the only real utility of these sub- 
stances, as also of the powder frequently used, is to 
obviate any distressing results from the friction of 
massage, and, providing the rubbing is scientifically 
carried out, they are really of doubtful value except in 
rare cases of very tender skins, etc. 

3. Trainers. Since at some time in his athletic 
career practically every athlete comes to a greater or less 
extent under the influence of some trainer, whether 
amateur or professional, it is of interest to consider those 
qualities in a man which best fit him to fill this re- 
sponsible post adequately. And when one thinks of* it, 
the trainer's responsibility is no light one. He has not 
only to teach and develop athletic style and technique 
which in itself necessitates both experience and a clear, 
quick-thinking brain but he must study the welfare 
both of body and mind of his charges. The ideal 
trainer has many rdles to fill. He must be "guide, 
philosopher and friend," something of a doctor, much 
of a student of nature and a judge of character, and, 
above all, a man. He must inspire confidence in his 
teaching, and to do this it is necessary for his teaching 
to be backed by good, sound experience and knowledge 
and by the ability to impart this to those under his care. 

So many coaches tend to adhere too closely to what 
they personally consider to be correct style, to have their 
own particular little fads and fancies, to consider them- 
selves infallible. These tendencies must always be 
strongly opposed. The trainer with the greatest success 
is the man who is broad-minded and possessed of a 
goodly supply of common sense* He must learn to 

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ATHLETICS 

develop the power of appreciation of the individual, both 
his ability and his character, and of developing these 
along the peculiar lines most suitable to that individual. 
It is certainly something to be able to take in hand a born 
athlete and make of him a champion, but it is a far 
greater gift to be capable of appreciating the latent 
possibilities of absolutely raw material, or of making a 
first-class man from someone who was previously just 
average. 

The trainer must have system and method, and he 
must show initiative, but he should at all costs avoid 
being needlessly dogmatic. This does not mean that he 
should show weakness. Trust and confidence will never 
ensue if a trainer lacks sufficient self-assurance. But 
the wise man can advise, teach and correct without ever 
actually ordering, and this is the ideal attitude for the 
trainer to adopt. His charges should be able to come 
to him freely and openly with all their difficulties, and 
he must equip himself to be able to solve them satisfac- 
torily. In other words, he must be able to teach theory 
as well as practice. It is a great thing to have knowledge, 
but it is a far greater thing to be able to impart that 
knowledge lucidly and confidently. 

Kindness, without any forfeiture of discipline, and 
appreciation of the human element in one's charges, the 
ability to put oneself in their places, are essential attri- 
butes in the good trainer. He must always remember 
that more is often done by leading than by driving, that 
to be too exacting, too dogmatic, and too strict will, in 
the long run, simply defeat his own ends. 

Cheeriness, optimism and enthusiasm, and the ability 
to develop this atmosphere around him, he must also 
possess, and this without any forced bravado or noise. 
Cool, quiet confidence, as much personal attention to 
the individual as he can possibly give, tact and under- 
standing, these combined with knowledge and experi- 
ence will produce a trainer worthy of his high respon- 
sibility. Age is not a necessity by any means, but very 

1 02 



TRAINING 

often the rather older man makes the better trainer, for 
the simple reason that he has been " through the mill " 
himself and is the better able to appreciate what is 
required of the ideal trainer. 

4. Medical Considerations Athletics and athletic 
training from a medical point of view, involving as they 
do all the physiological processes of the human body 
and the degree of reaction of these to increased effort, 
form a subject sufficiently extensive for a separate book. 
Hence it is intended here to take only a very cursory 
survey of some of the more interesting and applicable 
aspects of the subject. 

The athlete and his doings have attracted a consider- 
able amount of attention of late years from doctors and 
physiologists, and for those who are interested in the 
more intricate problems involved, the instructive and 
fascinating researches of Professor A. V. Hill should 
be consulted. 

In the first place, one cannot stress too strongly the 
advisability of a thorough medical examination previous to 
taking up seriously the sport of athletics. And, subse- 
quently, occasional visits to one's doctor are often well 
worth while if only to get a clean bill or to be told how 
much good the exercise is doing one. Medical examina- 
tion is of particular importance in the case of the school- 
boy, and should never be postponed until the eve of 
sports day, for by then it is possible that irreparable harm 
may have been done. 

Whilst on the subject of boys a subject more fully 
dealt with in a later chapter one may just say that 
training in any strict or limited sense of the word is 
really quite unnecessary. The boy is naturally fit, and 
the life of the average boy tends to keep him fit auto- 
matically. The essence of his training should be em- 
bodied in the word " moderation." Excessive effort in 
youth militates against sound physical development, and 
what the boy at school should aim at in his training is 
the acquisition of style and technique rather than the 

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ATHLETICS 

cultivation of powers of endurance and stamina. This 
combined with sound teaching in the rudiments of the 
health and care of the body are all that a boy's training 
demands. 

Whilst on the question of age, one may consider the 
often asked questions as to when active participation in 
athletics is advisable and when an athlete must consider 
himself too old for the game. Naturally, no hard-and- 
fast rules apply here. With reference to what has been 
said above, one can hardly advocate strenuous athletics 
before the age of nineteen or twenty, but the other end 
of the scale is much more difficult to place. As the 
natural elasticity of the muscular tissues, which is an 
integral part of youth's heritage, tends to decrease 
as the 'thirties are approached, there is consequently a 
falling-off in the amount of speed the muscles can pro- 
duce, but nevertheless at the same time there is occurring 
a gradual increase of strength and powers of endurance. 
Hence the explanation, assuming always that the indi- 
vidual maintains good general condition, of the tendency 
to run gradually longer and longer distances as age 
increases. There is really no physical reason why a man 
should not be able to run a good mile at the age of 35, 
and some do, but for the majority of athletes extraneous 
conditions make it impossible for them to carry on as 
long as this. The apex of an athlete's life is probably 
reached somewhere between the ages of 22 and 28. 

The action of muscle, which is, after all, the physio- 
logical basis of the act of running, is essentially a process 
of contraction in response to a nervous stimulus, the 
energy required for this process being derived from the 
oxygen carried by the blood stream. Hence, in one 
sentence we meet the four great systems chiefly con- 
cerned with running the muscular, the nervous, the 
vascular or circulatory, and the respiratory. 

Others in fact all the others, e.g. digestive, endo- 
crine, excretory are more or less indirectly concerned, 
but it is on the above four that the brunt of the work falls. 

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TRAINING 

And in this act, as in a greater or less degree in every act 
performed by the human body, the crux of the situation 
lies in the efficiency of the co-ordination between these 
various systems. For the more perfect the co-ordination, 
the more simplified and rhythmical become the actions 
involved in any particular process, and correspondingly 
the greater the economy of energy in proportion to the 
degree of elimination of unnecessary effort. 

This is simply the old theory of mind and body work- 
ing in perfect concert put in another way. The nervous 
system is, of course, the primary mover. Some stimulus 
appreciated by our special senses, e.g. the hearing of a 
starting gun, is conveyed to the brain and there trans- 
lated into the idea of the necessity of movement. This 
impulse is relayed along suitable nervous paths and 
ultimately reaches a group of muscle fibres, where, as it 
were, it fires the train, leading finally to the contraction 
of that muscle. One of the essentials of training is by 
constant practice so to adapt the nervous system that it 
replies more readily and rapidly to these stimuli, and at 
the same time from constant use finds a definite optimum 
route for the impulse to travel with the maximum speed 
to the muscle. 

With muscles themselves athletes are naturally 
endowed to a varying degree. The sprinter, on the 
whole, tends to have bigger muscle fibres than his long- 
distance brother, and to this fact, together with a rather 
moie highly strung nervous system, has been attributed 
the radical difference between sprinter and stayer. But 
whatever the initial amount of muscle owned by any 
one individual, training relatively increases this, for the 
simple reason that during a normal non-active existence 
we possess many muscle fibres which we do not need to 
use. When, however, as in running, an increased and 
exceptional effort is demanded, then these fibres, which 
habitually are a reserve, come into action and develop 
part passu with their more commonly used fellows. 
This is one of the results of training. Furthermore, these 

105 



ATHLETICS 

muscles in activity require a correspondingly greater 
amount of blood supplied to them both to increase the 
oxygen available and to remove the excessive waste 
products. The chief of these latter is lactic acid, and 
it is this substance which is responsible for the feeling 
known as fatigue. Again Nature comes to the assistance 
of the athlete in training and those centres in the brain 
which direct the supply of blood more to one part of the 
body than another the vaso-motor centres learn to 
concentrate on the muscular system, whilst at the same 
time the heart develops a relatively more rapid and 
forceful action. Further than this, locally at the site of 
muscular contraction, Nature has made provision for 
any extra demands upon her resources, for exactly as 
there are muscular fibres which are not ordinarily in use, 
so are there also minute blood channels capillaries 
which are usually closed and functionless, but which in 
the stress and strain of active effort are opened up to cope 
with the greater supply of blood pumped to the muscles 
by the heart. Training thus increases the available 
supply of blood, and consequently oxygen, to the muscles 
to a maximum. To what a considerable degree this is 
necessary will be recognised from the fact that sprinting 
100 yards requires almost thirty times as much oxygen 
as would be used in an equivalent time under normal 
conditions, and this, as is often the case, must be done 
without a breath being taken during the race ! 

But training does even more than this, for however 
fit one is, it is impossible not to get fatigued sooner or 
later in a race of any length, and hence the muscles must 
be accustomed to carry on in a medium of lactic acid 
as it were, and it has been suggested that those in really 
good training have actually developed the power of 
producing some specific antibody in the muscle to 
neutralise temporarily the bad effects of the lactic acid. 

Professor A. V. Hill has stated that the most econom- 
ical results are obtained when a race is run at practically 
the same pace throughout, and this is probably substanti- 

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TRAINING 

ated in practice in running the longer distances, and 
perhaps one can imagine' how a stable equilibrium is 
being set up between the waste products of the process 
of muscular contraction and their specific antibody. 

Two further facts in regard to our blood are worthy 
of note. One is an interesting observation of Dr. A. 
Abrahams that since it is estimated that all our red blood 
corpuscles are renewed every two months, this period of 
time is the minimum for a successful course of training. 
The other brings in another aspect of training, namely 
diet, for there are certain foods, e.g. fruit and vegetables, 
whose salt content tends to raise the alkalinity of the 
blood to an extent when it is capable of carrying relatively 
more oxygen. And the more oxygen we can carry per 
cubic millimetre of blood, the better will our " wind " 
be. For " wind " is only indirectly an affair of the res- 
piratory system. Loss of wind really means that the 
heart has temporarily found itself incapable of keeping 
pace with the demands of the muscles. But the heart 
:an be trained to keep up, for in normal health the 
heart never tires, and unless there has been some 
previous defect no amount of exertion, however great, 
:an really " strain " it. But, on the other hand, if sudden 
excessive strain is put on the heart of an untrained person, 
it is quite possible to dilate it, and hence, perhaps, lay 
the foundations for future degeneration of the heart 
muscle. 

Of the respiratory system, we have already treated to 
some extent in an earlier part of this chapter. Since it 
is responsible for the supply of oxygen being brought 
into contact with the blood stream in the lungs, its 
importance need not be stressed except to point out that 
those who are supposed to have " weak lungs " often 
derive an immense benefit from a graduated course of 
training. Fresh air, and plenty of it, has never yet done 
anyone any harm. 

One must perforce pass rapidly over the other systems 
of the body. Digestion has been dealt with under the 

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ATHLETICS 

heading of diet, and here one need but add the caution 
against allowing nervousness and excitement to upset that 
important process, as, unfortunately, it can most certainly 
do. Care of the bowels regularity being an essential 
of the teeth, particularly, and the tonsils, those ever-open 
portals of potential sepsis, of the skin, which with the 
kidneys are responsible for the excretion of so much of 
the waste products of the body's metabolic processes, 
are all of vital importance to the athlete in training. 
One cannot overstress the value of periodical and regular 
visits to the dentist. 

One other system, however, demands especial 
mention the endocrine system, comprised of those 
highly intriguing glands of internal secretion the 
functions of which, all very closely inter-related, are 
still very largely unknown ground. But we do know 
enough of them to realise that they play a very big part 
in the body's vital processes, and one presumes that in 
training their functions become suitably attuned to the 
greater requirements of the human body. Perhaps two 
brief examples may serve to demonstrate this. The 
thyroid gland, by its secretion, is responsible for a general 
speeding up of the bodily functions in particular, 
perhaps, that of the heart and circulation, and from 
considerations mentioned above it will be easily recog- 
nised how important this increased activity of the vascular 
system is to the athlete in competition. Again, the 
suprarenal gland secretes a substance which, amongst 
other actions, serves to stimulate the so-called " sympa- 
thetic" nervous system and produce a raised blood 
pressure. As nervousness, fear and allied sensations are 
said to be amongst the most potent stimuli to this gland, 
it can be seen that at the beginning of a race, for instance, 
it must be very much in the picture. 

A word is, perhaps, necessary in regard to drugs. 
Drugging, as implying the use of strychnine, cocaine, 
etc., is most definitely and absolutely to be deprecated. 
Apart altogether from the considerations of possible 

1 08 



TRAINING 

disqualification and not playing the game, the idea is 
medically unsound. For the healthy body requires no 
stimuli outside its natural ones to produce the maximum 
possible effort. And to a very large extent much the 
same can be said of medicines. Apart, of course, from 
such things as aperients, and liniments for the rubbing 
of sprains, etc., they should be quite unnecessary. The 
many tonics one sees on the market have no applicability 
to the athlete in training except under exceptional 
conditions. 

Amongst these latter the most important from the 
training viewpoint is the phenomenon of " staleness." 
Exactly what staleness is, it is difficult to say, but that it 
exists as a separate entity there is no doubt whatever. 
It has been thought to be a species of auto-intoxication ; 
it has been credited to continued, arduous competition ; 
it has been pointed out as the result of faulty training 
methods, in particular lack of sufficient fluids, but one 
is inclined to the view that it is essentially a condition 
which is primarily mental, due to lack of variety in 
training and to a habit of excessive introspection, and 
only secondarily physical. It is, however, in this form 
that it chiefly shows itself. The athlete loses weight 
(always a bad sign once the normal healthy level is 
reached), he ceases to perspire to any extent after 
exercise (showing a derangement of his vaso-motor 
system), his eyes are dull and his complexion poor, he 
is listless, depressed and irritable, he cannot sleep well, 
and his appetite goes. Surely a very sad picture indeed 
for a man who is supposed to be in first-class physical 
and mental condition, though, of course, a man would 
have to be very stale indeed to exhibit all these symptoms 
at one and the same time, 

To overcome this evil it is vital that he should cease 
all athletic work temporarily and, if possible, go right 
away and have a good holiday. He should drink as 
much as he can, including a little alcohol, and a tonic 
will probably be found useful. Above all, he should have 

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ATHLETICS 

with him a congenial companion who has been told or 
knows that his mend needs ample diversion and just as 
little mention of athletics as is humanly possible ! 

In conclusion, just a few words in regard to the 
commoner injuries and ailments of the track athlete. 
Any sport lays its follower open to potential injury, and 
though this is less the case with athletics than many other 
games, the athlete may, nevertheless, occasionally find 
himself in trouble. 

His feet need particularly careful attention, and 
cleanliness always is essential ! Corns, if painful, are 
best treated with either 10 per cent, salicylic acid or 
with resorcin ointment. Ingrowing toe-nails can be 
treated in the early stages with iodine and by being 
carefully cut, but if they continue to give trouble 
should be taken to a doctor without delay. Blisters 
should be pricked away from the bleb after a 
preliminary painting with iodine, and can be suitably 
protected by a corn-plaster. 

Sprains or " pulled tendons " which actually are 
really always muscles involve primarily a ruptured 
blood-vessel and secondarily a ruptured bundle of 
muscle fibres. The underlying cause is thought to be 
a condition of mild toxaemia, resulting in an imperfectly 
nurtured muscle. A strained muscle must always be 
immobilised and rested, and as soon as possible massaged. 
In other words, the treatment is exactly that of a 
fractured bone. 

Abrasions (especially "spiking") must always be very 
carefully treated and sepsis avoided at all costs. Iodine 
immediately and covering with aseptic dressings is the 
best line of treatment, combined if possible with an 
injection of anti-tetanic serum. 

Stiffness may be due in the earlier stages of training 
to accumulation of lactic acid in the tissues, when all 
that is needed is more training, or later to a slight rupture 
of muscular fibres, when treatment involves hot baths, 
massage, and gradually increasing light exercise, 

1 10 



TRACKS AND IMPEDIMENTA 

Stitch has been attributed to many causes, amongst 
which are indigestion from a meal too close to a race, 
jarring, giving a form of diaphragmatic cramp, and an 
engorgement of the spleen and liver. Apart from 
ceasing to run there is no cure once it has arrived. 

Bruises are best treated with cold applications (e.g. 
lead lotion) and a firm bandage, or, if very painful, by 
fomentation in the early stages. 

Shin soreness is usually due to running too fast too 
soon, i.e. before sufficient training has been done. Rest 
is the best cure, and if the affliction recurs, a blister as a 
counter-irritant over the tender spot will often work 
miracles. 

Cramp is only a temporary affliction cured by forcibly 
straightening the afflicted muscle, if necessary, after a 
preliminary kneading. 

Constipation and colds must always be carefully 
guarded against, and in this, as in all cases, a doctor 
consulted if any ailment or injury gives any signs of 
being really serious. 



Section 2. Tracks and Impedimenta 

i. Tracks The word " Track " may be said to 
cover everything from the bumpy country school field 
marked out with a roughly circular white line to the 
gigantic super-stadia of various European cities, especi- 
ally where Olympiads have been staged, and of the 
United States of America. It is not intended, however, 
to discourse on the history of tracks, nor on their many 
varieties, but with simply a mention of the old grass tracks, 
many of which still exist and are still used in this country, 
to pass to a brief consideration of the average cinder 
track of to-day. 

Before such a track is laid out the first essential is to 
have a careful plan, including all details of arrangement 
of the available space and of stands, dressing-room 

in 



ATHLETICS 

accommodation, offices, etc., drawn up by a competent 
draughtsman. 

The best shape of track is probably the flattened oval, 
i.e. two " straights " on either side of the ground as long 
as it is possible to make them without producing too 
marked a curvature in the two semi-circular bentts which 
join them together at each end of the ground. The 
optimum length of this oval is probably a quarter of a 
mile, as this distance forms such a simple denominator 
of longer distance races, besides allowing of the finish of 
any race up to 440 yards and the start and finish of all 
standard races of a quarter-mile and upwards taking 
place in the middle of one straight, thus serving the dual 
purpose of giving those in the best stand seats opposite 
this point the best view of these happenings, and, more 
important from the athletes' point of view, ensuring a 
certain amount of straight running after a start before 
the first curve is reached, and thereby lessening the 
possibility of unavoidable jostling and bumping which 
can so easily occur on the corners. 

The track itself, which, as will be described shortly, 
consists essentially of cinders, should be anything from 
2025 feet wide, and some experts consider that the 
corners should, if possible, be banked to the extent of 
about 1 6 inches as a maximum for the outside of a track 
24 feet wide. If at all possible it is a great asset to any 
ground to have one side of the oval extended lengthwise 
to give a long straight of about 250 yards, thus allowing 
all races of up to 220 yards to be run without a bend. 
Failing this, i.e. assuming the 220 yards to be run round 
half the circumference of the oval, an entirely separate 
straight cinder track should be placed inside the grass 
margin of the track and as nearly 1 50 yards long as is 
feasible, thus permitting the 100 and 120 yards races 
to be run straight. In these races each competitor has 
his separate lane, marked out by white chalk lines and 
not less than 4 feet in width. Similar lanes are, of 
course, necessary for any distance run on the track proper 

112 



TRACKS AND IMPEDIMENTA 

up to and including a quarter of a mile. These should 
be the same width, i.e. not less than 4 feet, and must 
be marked out en echelon. 

With regard to the arrangement of the turfed area 
included inside the track, this will of necessity vary 
with the conformation of the ground itself, and with the 
particular ideas of those who originally plan the ground, 

A good basis on which to work (vide Fig. i) is to place 
the high jump and pole vault pits at either end of the 




START 


OF 220 YDS. 



IONC |$^^x^ JUMP PIT. 



1100 \D&~ 





JUDGES 
STAND. 


ft 


ALL FINISHES 
__ FOR -fc MILE & 


& STARTS 
UPWARDS. 




GRAND STAND 



FIG. i. 



ground (i.e. in the curve of the bends) ; the long jump 
and hop, step and jump pits and run-ups parallel to that 
straight which is opposite the main stand, thus leaving 
the centre of the ground free for the throwing events, 
hammer, javelin, etc. The take-off for the high jump 
should be from a levelled semicircle of cinders at least 
12 feet in diameter, and the pit, consisting of sand or 
sawdust mixed with earth and dug loose to a depth of 
about 4 feet, another semicircle not less than 1 2 feet in 
diameter, with its centre under the middle of the crossbar. 
H 113 



ATHLETICS 

The long jump run-up should be a level cinder path 
about 4 feet broad and roughly 50 yards long, the take- 
off board is discussed elsewhere, and the pit should 
extend from about 15 to at least 25 feet from the board, 
the first 15 feet being level, but not dug out at all. A 
very useful scheme permitting due allowance being made 
for varying winds is to have either a pit with a 5o-yard 
run-up approaching it from both ends or to have one 
run-up track with a pit at both ends. The pit should 
also have suitable marking boards affixed on either side 
of it, and consist of well-dug earth and sawdust, and, if 
possible, in competition, top-dressed with a fine mixture 
of sand and clay to assist exact judging. For the pole 
vault the run-up is again a level cinder path relatively 
a shade broader and somewhat shorter than for the long 
jump, the take-off box is described in the section on 
vaulting, and the landing pit should be of similar con- 
sistency to that of the high jump but bigger quite 1 5 feet 
in diameter. The hop, step and jump simply requires a 
longer distance some 35 feet of levelled cinders 
between take-off board and pit, the arrangements being 
otherwise as for long jumping. The shot is put from 
a circle 7 feet in diameter, the front circumference of 
which consists of a whitewashed board 4 feet in length 
and 4 inches deep. The hammer is also thrown from 
a circle 7 feet in diameter, and must land within a 90 
degrees sector from the centre of this circle. To ensure 
this, all of the circle apart from this open sector in front 
is usually ringed off by high (8 feet) netting, placed at 
a suitable distance from the circumference of the actual 
circle. For the discus throw the circle is 8 feet 2^ 
inches in diameter, whilst a similar sector arrangement 
is used. The javelin throwing competition simply 
requires a white marked straight line at least 1 2 feet 
long at right angles to the direction of the throw, 

One other small, but nevertheless important, detail 
with regard to the interior arrangement of the ground 
should be mentioned, and th|& is the great value of 

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TRACKS AND IMPEDIMENTA 

providing at the finishing post a small marked-off 
enclosure for the exclusive use of referee, judges and 
timekeepers. 

The scope of this book does not allow anything to be 
said of the details of stands and dressing-rooms, etc., 
except, perhaps, simply to stress the importance of the 
provision of these with the greatest degree of comfort 
and efficiency possible. 

One point probably worthy of mention is the system 
adopted on many of the most up-to-date tracks to-day 
of providing a means of communication between track 
and dressing-room by underground tunnels leading 
beneath the track to the centre of the ground, thus 
preventing both the congestion too often noticeable 
around the over-ground approach to the track and also 
the incessant crossing of that track by competitors 
previous to and after competition. 

Finally, a few words with regard to the track itself, 
its preparation, composition and care. 

In the first place, the ground should be carefully 
measured out according to the pre-arranged plan, and, 
if necessary, levelled. It is as well where possible to 
have a ground just a shade higher in the middle than 
at the sides so as to ensure good drainage. Should this 
not be possible, ample provision for any excess of rain 
by the laying of drainage pipes should be made before 
any work is commenced on the track itself, and this 
again should be completed before any serious attention 
is turned to the turf in the centre of the ground. 

In passing it should be noted that in measuring any 
track for any purpose the measurement is taken one 
foot from the inner edge or " pole." 

The track as measured out should then be dug to an 
average depth of 2 feet provided, of course, it is possible 
to afford and to get an unlimited supply of cinders and 
the earth removed completely except for the little that 
may be used to effect necessary banking at the corners. 
The foundation of the tyaek is'then laid at this depth and 



ATHLETICS 

consists of large coke clinkers, loosely applied and not 
rolled. An average depth of about 9 inches is required 
of these. On top are placed layers of gradually less and 
less coarse cinders, mixed with less and less clay. 
Approximately 6 inches of the coarser and 6 inches of 
finer cinders form an excellent track, particularly if 
topped off with brick dust, as was the case, for instance, 
in the Amsterdam Olympic Stadium. Once laid down, 
the track should be carefully rolled with a gradually 
heavier and heavier roller, being at the same time 
copiously watered and occasionally scraped and relevelled 
on the surface. 

During the athletic season a track should be most 
carefully tended. Daily sweeping, rolling and watering 
(in hot weather) are essential. If the surface seems to 
be getting loose and does not bind well with this treat- 
ment, rock salt added to the water is most useful, but 
as this solution is ruinous to running shoes it should 
not be used more than absolutely necessary. 

In the off-season the track should be left fallow for 
two to three months at least, and then subjected to a 
course of deep raking and rolling in order to get some 
of the deeper cinders to the surface again and rebind the 
whole thing. 

[The indoor tracks of the U.S.A. consist of carefully 
laid and levelled wooden boards these usually being 
the floors of suitably converted armouries or gymnasia. 
In view of the necessarily limited space these tracks are 
usually 6 laps to the mile.] 

2. Impedimenta The paraphernalia requisite to the 
complete equipment of a good training and sports 
ground may be divided into those fixtures which form 
an essential part of the track itself and those which are 
rather the personal necessities of the competitors and 
officials in various events. Whichever group is concerned 
it is obviously highly important for the club or organising 
body responsible for the fittings on their ground to 
ensure that these are of standard pattern and conform 

116 



TRACKS AND IMPEDIMENTA 

to national and, if possible, international rules and 
regulations. 

We feel that it is a matter of considerable regret that 
there still exist in this country at any rate certain small 
differences between these two standards of competition. 
It is somewhat farcical to think that meetings can be 
held under international rules and yet with material that 
conforms only to national regulations. The Inter- 
national Amateur Athletic Federation, which is the 
recognised governing body for the sport throughout the 
world, has laid down a very definite set of rules and 
regulations for all events which it is possible to include 
in an athletic programme, and one hopes, in view of the 
rapidly increasing number of both open and what may 
be called private or limited international meetings, that 
every national organisation will ere long have standard- 
ised its own code of rules and regulations on the above 
I.A.A.F. basis. 

In the following cursory survey of the impedimenta 
of the track, however, A.A.A. Regulations are quoted. 

Among the first-mentioned group of track fittings 
perquisites of the ground itself one places : 

Hurdles. The general pattern of these is a 
rectangular frame supported by two wooden uprights, 
the bases of which must not be fixed to the ground in 
any way. This frame should be as light as is compatible 
with stability, for a hurdle that is the prey of every 
breeze is almost as bad as one that damages the runners. 
Hurdles must be at least 4 feet in width, while their 
height varies according to the distance being run. For 
the 1 20 yards race the height stipulated is 3 feet 6 inches ; 
for the 220 yards, 2 feet 6 inches ; and for the 300 and 
440 yards, 3 feet. Many varieties of hurdles are in use, 
of which mention may be made of the " swing-top " 
pattern and of that type in which the top bar simply 
rests on the supports without having any attachment to 
them. But a light, well-balanced one-piece frame is 

117 



ATHLETICS 

probably the best hurdle of all. It has become the 
custom to run hurdle races with six men competing at 
the same time, and as each of these requires his own 
flight of ten hurdles (every hurdle race has these ten 
jumps simply spaced at various intervals) a good ground 
should possess at least seventy, allowing for damages 
and mishaps, of each class of hurdle. 

Steeplechase hurdles, with one exception, are similar 
in type to the ordinary hurdle, and usually 3 feet high, 
this being the maximum height permitted by regulations. 
The exception is the " Water Jump/* which alone really 
marks the differentiation between a hurdle race and a 
steeplechase. This jump consists of a fence of four 
hurdles abreast, dressed with brushwood, in front of 
which is a space filled with water, about 2 feet deep just 
under the hurdles, and gradually getting shallower until 
the track is again reached some 10 feet from the jump. 

High Jump Standards. There is no one particular 
style of upright laid down as being correct, the usual 
type being a wooden post some 8 or 9 feet in height, 
mounted on either a circular or cross-board base, and 
perforated from about 4 to 7 feet with holes % inch 
apart into which fit the pegs on which the cross-bar 
rests. According to old regulations these pegs used to 
project in the direction of the landing pit, so that it was 
only possible to knock the bar off in this direction. 
Now, to counteract the prevalence of the " rolling " 
style of high jumping, the pegs are square, flat pieces 
of wood, i inches wide and projecting 2^ inches 
towards the opposite upright. The cross-bar resting on 
these can, therefore, be knocked off in either direction. 
This cross-bar, which is made entirely of wood, must be 
of the same dimensions throughout its length, but may be 
either rectangular or circular, with squared ends to rest 
upon the pegs, and in both cases about i inch in diameter. 

Pole Vault Standards. These are similar in type 
to the above, except that, of course, the greater heights 
achieved by pole vaulters must be catered for by an 

118 



TRACKS AND IMPEDIMENTA 

extra height of upright, namely to about 14 feet. This 
may be done either by having one very long continuous 
upright, or, as is rather more common, having a telescopic 
arrangement of one upright inside another, thus making 
for ease of adjustment. Long forked sticks to replace 
the cross-bar are an essential for this event, in which 
even more than in the high jump, where it is also of 
importance, a reasonable stability combined with relative 
lightness and with ease of manipulation is what is to be 
aimed at. 

Judging Stand. This is a small portable stand, 
consisting of three seats, arranged in tiers one above the 
other and each about 4 feet wide. This apparatus 
greatly facilitates good judging and should never be 
omitted from the equipment of a track of any size. 

Finishing Posts. These are narrow wooden rods 
placed exactly opposite each other on either side of the 
track, and about 4 feet in height, between which the 
worsted, which usually constitutes the so-called finishing 
" tape," is stretched. 

Score Boards. In these days of " loud speakers " 
the score board has become less of a necessity, but it is 
still required on most grounds and should be fitted up 
with a series of numbers and facilities for hanging and 
displaying these. The revolving board, which can be 
turned to face every side of the ground in rotation, is a 
simple and very useful arrangement. 

Amongst the second group of track impedimenta 
the personal requisites of athletes and officials one may 
mention (a) for the officials : 

Megaphones. Again not so commonly used since the 
advent of the loud speaker. The best megaphone is that 
which combines lightness with sufficient volume to give 
good tone and resonance. 

Measures. As required for the various jumping and 
throwing events, and also, of course, for tne measuring 
of any track on which a potential record has been set up, 

119 



ATHLETICS 

The steel tape measure which can be rolled up in a 
leather case is probably the most serviceable variety. 

Watches. These perquisites of timekeepers are instru- 
ments beyond the scope of this book to discuss in any 
detail, but it may be or interest to note that the I.A.A.F. 
has now passed a rule that all races up to and including 
300 yards shall be timed in tenths of a second, but 
distances beyond this still in fifths. 

Starting Gun. Usually, of course, this is provided by 
the individual starter to suit his own particular 
requirements. 

Judging Cards. If a previously printed card with 
suitable blank spaces to be filled in by the judges for the 
particular event concerned be provided at the beginning 
of a meeting, the ultimate checking of results, etc., 
is greatly facilitated. 

(H) Personal requisites of athletes : 

Batons. These consist of bamboo or light wood and 
are to be not less than i foot in length and of an average 
diameter of 2 inches. 

Shots. These are, of course, often provided by the 
competitor himself, but the club must be prepared to 
cater for the man who does not possess his own. The 
shot is an iron or brass shell, spherical in shape, and 
filled with lead so that its total weight is 1 6 Ibs. 

Discus. To quote A.A.A. Rules : " The discus 
shall be composed of a smooth metal rim, permanently 
attached to a wooden body, brass plates set flush into 
the sides of the wooden body, and in the exact centre 
of the discus a means for securing the correct weight. 
The brass plates shall be circular in form, having a 
diameter of not less than 2 inches nor more than 
2 \ inches. Each part of the discus shall be a counterpart 
of the other side, and shall have no indentations, project- 
ing points or sharp edges. The sides shall taper in a 
straight line from the beginning of the curve of the rim 
to a line a distance of i inch from the centre of the 

1 20 



TRACKS AND IMPEDIMENTA 

discus. The largest dimensions shall be a circle not less 
than 8f inches in diameter. The thickness through the 
exact centre on a line perpendicular to the diameter shall 
be not less than if inches. The thickness at an inch 
from the centre shall be exactly the same as at the centre. 
The thickness of the rim at a distance of inch from 
the edge shall be not less than a inch. The edge shall 
be rounded in a true circle. The weight of the discus 
shall be not less than 4 Ibs. 6-4 ounces, complete as 
thrown. A metal discus, complying with the official 
measurements, conditions and weight, may be used." 
Surely a most awe-inspiring weapon ! 

Javelin. This consists of wood, is at least 1 2 feet 
in length, weighs at least 1-6 Ibs., and has a sharp point 
of either iron or steel. The centre of gravity of the 
javelin is approximately 3 feet from this point, and at 
the centre of gravity there is allowed a binding of 
whipcord 6J inches long and less than i inch thick. 

Poles. Poles are either made of wood or of bamboo 
now practically always the latter for reasons pointed out 
in a later section. They may be of any length or 
diameter, but these dimensions average about 1 5 feet and 
3 inches respectively. The pole ends either in a metal 
spike or a wooden peg, and regulations allow it to be 
bound with a uniform thickness of adhesive tape which 
assists both to preserve the pole and to aid the grip of 
the jumper. 

Hammers. The " hammer " consists of a lead or 
brass spherical shell filled with lead in a similar manner 
to the shot, and, like it, 16 Ibs. in weight. This is 
connected by means of a swivel to the " handle," which 
with the grip must be not more than 4 feet in length. 
This handle consists of a single unbroken, straight length 
of spring steel wire not less than \ inch in diameter. 
The grip, which must be rigid, may be of either single 
or double construction, but must be attached direct to 
the handle by a loop of the wire only, i.e. without the 
intervention of any swivel or other joint. 

121 



ATHLETICS 

Section 3. Personal Equipment 

The athlete's own personal equipment is relatively 
both inexpensive and simple in comparison with that 
required by many other sports. It is, perhaps, this very 
simplicity which leads to the unfortunately far too 
frequent lack of attention to both composition and 
condition of the few real requisites. A satisfactory 
outfit should provide essentially three things comfort, 
warmth and service. 

The value of the first is obvious, for it is frankly 
impossible for an athlete to produce of his very best if 
there is any factor in his equipment which makes him 
conscious of its existence. It is astonishing what a 
mountain competition and the nervous strain connected 
therewith can make out of such a molehill as a tight 
vest, a knotted shoe-lace, or a loose spike. To ensure 
warmth, too, is almost a more vital necessity than to 
have really comfortable running kit though the warmth 
factor is more closely related to the equipment of the 
training track and the preliminaries of competition than 
to actual competition itself. 

As the finer chances of success are, however, so closely 
related to the previous preservation of a sufficient body 
temperature, one can really consider this condition with 
regard to equipment as a whole. It cannot be too 
forcibly stressed and will doubtless be reiterated again 
and again in succeeding sections of this book that 
warmth during training, warmth immediately prior to 
competition, and the maintenance of warmth after, or 
in the field events during competition, are of primary 
concern to every athlete. Practically every essential 
physiological activity connected with the practice of 
athletics is retarded by cold, whilst, even in hot weather, 
the nervousness inevitably associated with competition 
to some degree produces a feeling of chilliness even 
though one may be actually perspiring at the time 
which has to be guarded against just as carefully as 

122 



PERSONAL EQUIPMENT 

actual low temperature. So the athlete's " over-clothes " 
must be warm 1 And this means that they must not only 
be reasonably thick, but also reasonably loose. So often 
one comes across the mistaken idea that the tight-fitting 
sweater is the warmer sweater. This is definitely not so, 
for a close-fitting garment simply acts as a medium 
through which body heat can be easily and quickly 
dispersed into the surrounding atmosphere, whilst if 
loose it acts as a form of protective barrier, preventing the 
escape of the layer of warm air next to the skin which the 
body has produced. 

And our third essential for good equipment is service. 
By this is implied that it pays in the long run to buy a 
good thing at first, for the length of available wear and 
the avoidance of repeated inferior purchases, apart from 
the fact that cheap goods never fit properly, will more 
than adequately repay any initial outlay. As a corollary 
to this, if one does invest in good material, that material 
is worth looking after well, and attention to and care and 
cleanliness of one's gear are points that no good athlete 
will neglect. Apart from thereby prolonging the useful 
life of any particular article, they subconsciously tend 
to stimulate one's self-respect and self-confidence and 
to negative any tendency to slackness either in one's 
physical training or mental outlook towards the sport. 

The simplicity of the total requisite equipment is 
probably quite an important factor in accounting for the 
general appeal athletics has to the average man. It is 
quite possible to fit oneself out with all the essentials of 
athletic competition for a sum of not much over two 
pounds, whilst the initial expenditure of five pounds 
would ensure a very comprehensive equipment of 
excellent quality. 

Proceeding to a brief consideration of the various 
articles which should constitute this equipment, one 
may first deal with the most important of all, namely 
shoes. 

Shoes. For all races nowadays, apart from cross- 

123 



ATHLETICS 

country, Marathon and road races, the spiked shoe is 
worn. This should be made of leather which combines 
the maximum of softness with the minimum of stretching, 
and should fit the foot so tightly and exactly, having 
especially a good grip at the heel, that the assistance of 
a shoe-horn is required to get it on. To ensure the 
highest degree of satisfaction in the fit of a shoe, it 
should, if possible, be made to measure. This should 
at any rate apply to the shoes actually used for racing, 
and in this connection it may be mentioned that it well 
repays the athlete to set one pair of shoes aside for 
competition only, whilst using one or more older and 
inferior pairs for training purposes. A spare pair of 
shoes'should, however, always be carried on competition 
days. 

With regard to the " spikes " or steel points which 
are firmly fixed into the sole of the shoe, the number, 
length and arrangement of these may vary considerably 
according to the weight of the athlete and his particular 
style, especially in respect of length of stride, whilst 
the event in which he is competing, of course, plays a 
large part in deciding the choice, and also the nature 
and condition of the track on which he is running. The 
number varies from four to seven (exclusive of the two 
heel spikes which are required in the shoes of all hurdles 
and field-event men). The four-spike shoe, arranged 
two and two on a short sole, is essentially that of the 
sprinter with a springy action, who is right up on the 
ball of his foot all the time. The five-spike with a 
single front spike is simply a variety of this, whilst the six 
and seven-spike, set in a necessarily longer and rather 
stouter sole, is for those who tend to run more on the 
flat of the foot the long-striding sprinter, the middle 
and the long-distance man. The length of spike varies 
from about $ inch in shoes for a hard, fast, dry track to 
J inch for use on wet, soft or loose tracks, or on grass. 
Generally speaking, on an average track, the short- 
distance man needs a spike about f inch long, and the 

124 



PERSONAL EQUIPMENT 

long-distance man one rather nearer \ inch. In passing, 
it is of interest to note that spiked shoes were first 
introduced into America in 1868, whilst English 
athletes were apparently somewhat earlier in adopting 
this style of shoe. 

For the jumpers in particular, it has been found that 
a small rubber pad in the heel of the shoe is a very great 
boon in preventing to some extent the jarring and 
consequent soreness unavoidable in these events. It is 
noteworthy that the great Paavo Nurmi, who runs with 
a peculiarly flat-footed action, has complete rubber heels 
to all his shoes. 

A device of considerable value, especially for sprinters, 
is a broad (3 inch) elastic band sewn into the shoe, 
fitting closely over the instep. It gives a feeling of 
support and security which is most comforting in fast 
work. Hurdlers, again, frequently use a shoe which 
has an additional light leather ankle strap, for similar 
purposes. Shoes being such an important part of one's 
outfit, it is very necessary to pay particular attention to 
them ; to avoid leaving them in a wet condition ; to oil 
them carefully after competition on a bad day ; to keep 
them scrupulously clean, especially the spikes ; and to 
avoid walking on them on any hard surface, especially 
cement, which very quickly both bends and blunts them. 

Among other forms of shoe which need brief mention 
is that for cross-country work, which is a more loosely 
fitting shoe with a sole either of rubber, especially crtye 
rubber, or of thin leather. The drawback to the former 
is that in wet weather it becomes very slippery. This 
can to some extent be counteracted by having a solid 
rubber sole raised into several small ridges running 
across the sole, and in any case all cross-country shoes 
should be black-leaded in wet weather to prevent for as 
long as possible their being soaked with water. 

Indoor athletics demands a shoe which is the same as 
the ordinary type, except that the spikes are cut off very 
short (J inch) and blunt. 

125 



ATHLETICS 

One other type of shoe should be included in the 
athlete's outfit, but this pair will not increase his outlay, 
for it is simply an ordinary pair of shoes (or slippers) 
which he can wear in getting from the dressing-room to 
the track and back, and before, between and after 
competitions, thus serving the double purpose of both 
saving his racing shoes and allowing his feet the maxi- 
mum of comfort 

Clothes. Under this heading the two essentials for 
actual competition are the vest and the shorts. For them 
it may be said the material is immaterial. What really 
matters is that they should fit comfortably and not too 
tightly, be they of silk, which, though admittedly most 
pleasant, is rather in the nature of a luxury, or of cotton, 
which is quite sufficient for any ordinary purpose. 
Again, it seems to us of little consequence whether the 
vest is of the " pull-over " type or whether it buttons up 
the front. It is a case of chacun a son gout. With the 
shorts, of course, the " button " type is the better for 
obvious reasons. In England, unlike anywhere else in 
the world, the A.A.A.Laws insist upon a half-sleeve for 
the vest, and though this seems an unnecessary restric- 
tion, it is rather a moot point as to whether freedom 
under the arms makes any difference at all in competition, 
except, perhaps, in the case of the throwing events. 
The " shorts " should not be too abbreviated, but they 
should most certainly live up to their name, and should 
also be comfortably free and wide, and, if being used for 
a steeplechase, dark in colour. The elastic waistband 
seems, at the present day, to have been rather superseded 
as a means of support by the adjustable buckles over 
either hip. If possible, in case of accident, and as an 
antidote to the effects of rain, two vests and two pairs 
of shorts should be included in the day's equipment. 

Just as essential, though not for actual competition, 
are the sweater and the track pants. The former should 
be of good wool and loosely fitting. The ideal type of 
" track pants " is the thick woollen variety reaching 

126 



PERSONAL EQUIPMENT 

right down on to the foot and fitted with the very useful 
" slip fasteners/' but any substitute for these, e.g. an old 
pair of flannel trousers, is better than running the risk 
of going about in anything but the warmest weather 
with bare legs. 

Toe socks of wash-leather, and socks proper, the latter 
especially for cross-country runners, are not absolutely 
essential, providing the athlete possesses comfortable, 
well-fitting shoes, but are recommended, and in particular 
cases they may be of distinct advantage, providing 
always that due precautions e.g. smearing the inside 
of the sock with soap or tallow are taken against the 
rubbing to which the long-distance wearer of socks is 
so prone. 

As an alternative to the sweater some athletes prefer 
the blazer and scarf combination, which, though perhaps 
not quite so useful from the warmth point of view, is 
certainly more picturesque, whilst, of course, it must be 
remembered that even amongst great athletes super- 
stition still exists, and a blazer is often an old friend 
which it would be inviting disaster to discard ! 

The long woollen overcoats used by the British 
Olympic team in Paris in 1924 are luxuries rather 
beyond the reach and probably also the requirements of 
the athlete ; but if one must compete in rain, or if rain 
seems imminent during competition, a light overcoat 
is a necessity and not to be discarded until the last 
possible moment, whilst on any occasion it forms a good 
rug, either to sit upon previous to a race or in which to 
keep warm. The possibility of any form of covering for 
the head being necessary in this country is remote, but 
in warmer climates a hat may be a very necessary 
adjunct. 

Various : Shoe-laces. It is highly important that 
these should be carefully examined at short, regular 
intervals, and always before going to the sports ground 
on the day of an important event ; and that a spare pair 
should be carried at every competition. 

127 



ATHLETICS 

" Slips." A.A.A. Rules stipulate that these must be 
worn by every athlete, and though by far the majority 
do, for reasons of comfort and convenience, and also 
largely because it has become a habit, one does not 
imagine that should a breach of this ruling suit the 
peculiarities of any particular athlete it would be likely to 
meet with any dire penalty. 

" Corks" The use of running-corks thick, spindle- 
shaped pieces of cork about 4 inches long and i inch 
thick, hollowed out to allow the passage of a rubber band 
which, when slipped over the back of the hand, holds 
them firmly in the palms is very much a matter for the 
individual, but we certainly have found them of great 
use in races of up to a quarter of a mile, especially when 
these have involved a fighting finish. In field events, 
however, they are illegal. 

Tape Measure. The long-jumper and the sprinter, 
though in the latter case a suitable knotted piece of 
string will do equally well, will save themselves much 
time and trouble by carrying their own tape measure. 

Trowel. A trowel, especially the flat, mason's trowel, 
should be an essential part of the outfit of every man who 
uses the " crouch start, " and, of course, in particular 
every sprinter, in whose case well-made " holes " are 
all-important to the success of his race. 

Toothbrush, etc. (i.e. soap, towel, brush and comb, 
scissors, safety pins, and small medicine chest, with 
iodine, zinc ointment, a small bandage, some wool, 
gauze or lint, and adhesive plaster as a minimum). 
Cleaning the teeth and rinsing out the mouth with cold 
water are very valuable preliminaries to any important 
contest, whilst the other details mentioned tend to the 
production of that comfort and consequent efficiency 
so vital to an athlete on the day of competition. 

Of further possible articles required in an athlete's 
equipment there only remain now the particular imple- 
ments of the field event in which he desires to compete, 
such as shot, hammer, discus, javelin and pole. Though, 

128 



PERSONAL EQUIPMENT 

of course, any properly equipped ground provides these 
as required, many field-event experts prefer to have 
their own, and in most competitions are allowed to use 
them providing they fulfil the necessary requirements 
of A.A.A. Rules. 



129 



CHAPTER VI 

SPRINTING 
Section i. Introduction 

TO move as rapidly as one could, were it in the 
chase or in the flight, was probably the earliest 
recognised conception of running. And this, the 
longest possible output of maximum energy, is really the 
essence of what we now know as sprinting. As a term 
" sprinting " is somewhat of an anomaly, since one is 
naturally inclined to define it as running at top speed. 
The researches of various investigators have, however, 
proved conclusively that full speed can only be main- 
tained by the human body for a maximum of about 20 
yards, and that it cannot be attained i.e. the inertia of 
the body at rest cannot be overcome until some 60 
yards have been covered, and that after running approxi- 
mately 80 yards in all, momentum is gradually but 
inevitably lost. This being the case, " full-speed " 
running will hardly adequately fill the bill as a definition 
of sprinting, a term under which we propose to consider 
the running of all distances up to and including 300 
yards. Hence one must perforce revert to the earlier 
and wider definition of running as fast as is possible for 
as far as is possible. 

* The universal appeal and popularity of sprinting 
applies alike to athlete and spectator. There is no small 
thrill in running a sprint race and there is almost a 
greater one in watching it. Even before the present-day 
craze for speed became so general, it is hard to imagine 
one's blood not being stirred by running or by watching 
a 100 yards race, when one realises that this distance 
traversed in 10 seconds means the propulsion of the 

130 



SPRINTING 

human body at an average of more than 20 miles per 
hour. Actually in the middle, of an "even-time" 
hundred, when the sprinter is covering some 35 feet per 
second, he is travelling at a speed of almost 24 miles an 
hour ! So great is the appreciation of fast running to-day 
that one may safely say that to have an even-time 
reputation is to be a marked man for life. And there is 
certainly no race in present-day athletics, with the single 
exception, perhaps, of a good short hurdle race, which 
raises the enthusiasm of a crowd of spectators to such 
a pitch as does the 100 yards sprint. It is 10 seconds 
of the most concentrated excitement. 

Again, to the average man who takes up athletics as a 
sport the appeal is very great, for, though later he will 
find out what a fallacy this is, it appears especially in 
the hands of the expert a comparatively easy business ; 
and it is evident that even should he be unsuccessful his 
deficiencies will be relatively less obvious than would be 
the case over a longer distance. One has but to consult 
the entry list for the sprint handicap in any big open 
meeting to realise that by far the majority of athletes 
are short-distance men of some sort. So great, therefore, 
is this universal appeal that we feel the sprints fully merit 
primary consideration amongst the various individual 
events of the athletic programme which it is proposed to 
discuss in succeeding chapters. Far from being simple, 
sprinting is in point of fact easily the most difficult of the 
running events, and amazing as it may seem the actual 
strain involved is relatively greater than in any other race. 
The facts mentioned above in connection with the limit of 
full-speed running show that even in a 100 yards the 
athlete's effort is actually failing to some extent by the 
time the last 10 or 15 yards are reached. It is therefore 
unnecessary to stress further the enormous importance 
of the sprinter being just as physically and mentally fit 
as is possible if he hopes to achieve great things. An 
exceedingly high degree of muscular and nervous co- 
ordination is demanded, and this can only be 'obtained 



ATHLETICS 

by a lo&g, conscientious period of steady training on a 
basis of sound natural ability and scientific principles. 

The successful sprinter is really something of a 
paradox in that he must be both natural and artificial. 
He must be possessed of a certain amount of innate 
ability in the first place, but to achieve anything more 
than mediocrity he must graft on to this basis a me- 
chanical stereotyped style productive of such perfect, 
apparently effortless, rhythm in running that he becomes 
to all intents and purposes an automaton. The first-class 
sprinter has made sprinting a habit. 

It will be readily understood that this process is not 
such as can be carried out in a few days. It needs months 
and even years of continued, painstaking practice, with 
meticulous attention to every minute detail and much 
concentration and perseverance to accomplish the 
desired end. But in sprinting the game is always well 
worth the candle, for each little detail brought by practice 
from the condition of being a definite conscious effort 
to that in which it becomes part of the sprinting habit 
shows itself in increased speed, improved style, greater 
confidence and more success. So automatic should 
sprinting become that it has by some been classed as a 
pseudo-field event. In other words, the sprinter should 
aim not so much at beating his opponents as recording 
a better time than they do. It is inevitable, of course, 
that the element of competition should in some degree, 
however small, enter into the consideration of any 
race, but in sprinting the race should be run as much 
an individual mechanical action as possible with the 
minimum of recognition of the presence of opponents. 
The ideal, as H. M. Abrahams says, would be for 
sprinters to run in blinkers ! 

There is really no such thing as the sprinting type. 
All men can be sprinters given a certain amount or ability 
and the chance to acquire a suitable technique. Big 
men and small men, tall men and short men, light men 
and heavy men all have had their representatives 

132 



SPRINTING 

amongst the world's crack sprinters. Nevertheless, 
there do seem to be certain attributes which pertain to 
them all, both physical and, more particularly, mental. 
The sprinter, whatever may be his bodily proportions, 
always seems to possess a goodly store of nervous energy. 
He is the alert, brisk type of man, quick in his response 
to external stimuli either mental or physical. In fact 
he is probably at rock bottom of an excitable nature ; 
whether this becomes evident or not depends on the 
particular individual concerned and his powers of self- 
control and restraint. The sprinter is essentially 
temperamental, and the effect this side of him has upon 
his running is enormous and very often one of the 
greatest responsibilities either he or his trainer or both 
have to shoulder. His whole attitude when trained and 
fit should be indicative of compressed energy he should 
appear to be, as it were, straining at the leash. It is the 
buoyant, exuberant, self-confident feeling which arises 
from this sort of nature that spells the last word of 
success for a sprinter. However great his ability, 
however perfect his style, he must back these up with 
that keen, eager, " on-the-toes " sensation which implies 
a firm belief in his own power to succeed before he will 
actually reach the front rank. Physically, irrespective 
of actual size, the points which seem to mark out the 
sprinter are the possession of big, strong leg muscles, 
relatively long thighs (i.e. from hip to knee), well- 
developed chest and shoulder muscles, a high instep 
and a neat ankle and foot. One does not intend to 
convey that every first-class sprinter possesses all these 
attributes, but anyone who has achieved much success 
at short-distance running will be found to conform in 
most respects to the above picture. Many authorities 
state that taken all round the sprinter tends to be on 
the small side and that the success of such a one is 
dependent upon his relatively greater rapidity of action. 
We venture to disagree with both these statements, and, 
whilst holding no particular brief for the big sprinter, 

133 



ATHLETICS 

it must be remembered that there is such a thing as 
being too rapid in action, where energy is simply wasted 
without the production of proportionate speed. And, 
again, in quite recent times one can think of a considerable 
number of sprinters who have obtained world's cham- 
pionship honours and been comparatively big men. 
However, the question is of small interest, and one in 
which comparisons are invidious and generalisations 
really useless. 

We have included in our definition of sprinting all 
those distances which can be run in approximately even 
time, i.e. the 100 yards (10 seconds), the 200 yards 
(20 seconds) and the 300 yards (30 seconds). The 
number of races run whose distances lie between, say, 
40 and 300 yards is, however, very numerous, and no 
purpose would be served by a detailed consideration 
of each. It is therefore proposed to concentrate on a 
discussion of the 100 yards and to add a few words 
in regard to the 220 yards race. The same basic 
principles will apply to any sprinting distance, and 
these can be best studied in a consideration of the 100 
yards race, which is, after all, the sprint. 

The 100 yards has been a championship event in this 
country since the inception of the annual Amateur 
Athletic Association Meeting in 1866, in which year 
it was won in loj seconds. In the following year it was 
won by a schoolboy from Eton College in lof seconds, 
this being the maximum time ever taken for the distance 
in the A.A.A. Championship Meeting. Ten seconds was 
first reached in 1886, until which time the 'Varsities 
(Oxford and Cambridge) and the London Athletic Club 
appear to have held a monopoly of champion sprinters. 
After this amongst A.A.A. sprint champions one finds 
such great names as E. H. Felling, C. A. Bradley, 
A. F. Duffey (U.S.A.), J. W. Morton, R. Kerr (Canada), 
R, E. Walker (South Africa), G. H. Patching (South 
Africa), who, incidentally, was the first man to record 
inside " evens " in this meeting he did 9^ seconds in 

134 



SPRINTING 

1 9 1 2 and W. R. Applegarth. Since the War the list is 
even more bestudded with athletic " stars," including W. 
A. Hill, H. F. V. Edward, E. H. Liddell (who still holds 
the Championship and British Record of 9 T V seconds), 
H. M. Abrahams, L. Murchison (U.S.A.), those two 
splendid German sprinters R. Corts and H. K6rnig, and, 
in 1928, W. B. Legg (South Africa). Since the War 
in fact since 1923 10 seconds has been beaten four 
times, showing that even in this event, where owing to 
the relatively short space of time involved improvement 
must necessarily be correspondingly difficult to demon- 
strate, a generally higher standard has been attained. 
It is of interest also to note that though four of every 
five championships held to date have been won by 
Englishmen, the last four years have seen an American, 
two Germans and a South African annex the event. 

The sister event, the 100 metres, as run on the 
Continent, has naturally featured on every Olympic 
programme, and though in the first games at Athens 
in 1896 it was won in 12 seconds, in the next games at 
Paris in 1900 io seconds was recorded, and this 
standard has been maintained ever since. In the eight 
Olympiads held to date the United States of America 
have scored five successes, Great Britain, Canada and 
South Africa one each. The British Empire, however, 
has the honour of sharing in the largest part of the 
Olympic record of io seconds, in the persons of 
H. M. Abrahams (1924), P. Williams (Canada) 
(1928) and J. E. London (1928). The only other 
Olympic runners to record this time were D. F. 
Lippincott (U.S.A.) at Stockholm in 1912 and R. 
McAllister (U.S.A.) at Amsterdam in 1928. 

The world's record of io|- seconds stands to the 
credit of that sprinting phenomenon of the United 
States of America, C. W. Paddock, who, incidentally, 
on the same day that he established this record time 
also set the world's figures for the 300 metres (33! 
seconds!). Paddock also shares the honour of being 

135 



ATHLETICS 

world-record holder for the 100 yards, which he has 
on several occasions covered in 9! seconds a time also 
achieved by three compatriots, Kelly, Drew and 
Bowman, and by Coaffee, of Canada whilst yet 
another American, R. A. Locke, holds the record of 
2 of seconds for the 220 yards and 200 metres. 

A comparative table of the British and World Records 
at the more common sprint distances may be of interest : 







WORLD'S RECORD 




BRITISH RECORD 


Event 
(in 
yds.) 


Time 
(in 
sees. 




Holder 
(year and 
nationality) 


Time 
(in 

sees.) 


Holder 
(year and 
nationality) 






f 


D. Kelly, 1906 \ 














(U.S.A.). 














H. P. Drew, 1914 














(U.S.A.). 










r\3.< 




C. W. Paddock, 1921 






E. H. Liddell, 1923 


IOO 


9f ' 




(U.S.A.). 




9ro 


(Gt. Britain). 








C. H. Coaffee, 1922 














(Canada). 














C. Bowman, 1927 














(U.S.A.). J 








no 


10* 


C. W. Paddock, 1921 












(U.S.A.). 






1 20 


11} 


R. E. Walker, 1908 


uj 


R. E. Walker, 1909 






(S. Africa). 




(S. Africa). 


150 


14* 


C. W. Paddock, 1921 


MI 


W. R. Applegarth, 1913 






(U.S.A.). 




(Gt. Britain). 


200 


19 


C. W. Paddock, 1921 


I9f 


W. R. Applegarth, 1912 






(U.S.A.). 




(Gt. Britain). 


22O 


20| 


R. A. Locke, 1926 


2I i 


W. R. Applegarth, 1914 






(U.S.A.). 




(Gt. Britain). 


250 


24} 


W. T. Macpherson, 1891 


2 4t 


E. H. Felling, 1888 






(N. Zealand). 




(Gt. Britain). 


300 


30* 


C. W. Paddock, 1921 


3t 


G. M. Butler, 1926 






(U.S.A.). (Unofficial.) 




(Gt. Britain). 






B. J. Wefers, 1896 












(U.S.A.). 










G, M. Butler, 1926 










(Gt. Britain). 







It may be mentioned in passing that no less than three 
Americans have been credited as yet unofficially 
with having covered 100 yards in 9^ seconds, which 
represents the amazing performance of travelling the 
whole distance at an average consistent pace of nearly 

136 



SPRINTING 

22 miles pet hour. In view of what has been said above 
in regard to man's maximum capacity for the mainten- 
ance of full speed it will be realised why this time is 
almost incredible. 

Now, however, let us pass to a consideration of the 
means by which one aims at attaining to these heights 
of achievement in human speed, namely the principles 
of sprinting style and technique. 

As has been mentioned above, the following remarks 
will apply primarily to the 100 yards, though with slight 
modifications, which will be noted later, they will serve 
equally well as a basis for the consideration of any sprint 
distance. 

Style must always be a matter of personal opinion, 
something which is in its essence the possession of each 
particular individual. For all of us have minds and 
bodies which differ to some greater or lesser degree, 
and however machine-like the sprinter may become 
and it must be remembered this is his ultimate aim, the 
repetition of various movements with never-varying 
automatic precision still he must always originally 
have been possessed of a natural self on to which training 
and experience have grafted some particular technique. 
And though the consideration of this natural basis does 
not really come within the scope of this chapter, one 
must emphasise the fact that it is really this part of the 
sprinter's make-up which is of primary importance. 

First and foremost, be natural 1 Any adopted style, 
which necessitates a constant struggle between that 
which one would do automatically, and that which one 
feels or has been taught one ought to do, must inevitably 
produce bad form. It is a noteworthy fact that many of 
the world's most famous sprinters have had styles which 
have been far from beautiful and, one believes, far from 
correct. But such has been their natural talent that this 
has been capable of overcoming obvious faults. Of 
course it is always possible to say that had they eradicated 
those faults they would have been even more phenomenal, 

137 



ATHLETICS 

but nevertheless we incline to the belief that success in 
sprinting lies rather in the careful cultivation of a pre- 
existing natural style than in the manufacture of some 
text-book or trainer-made style. This does not mean that 
one should continue to run with obvious faults. There 
are certain points with regard to sprinting about which 
one can brook no argument. These the would-be 
sprinter must acquire. But there is a far greater 
number of points on which it is ridiculous to lay 
down any hard-and-fast dogmatic ruling. Of these the 
sprinter must judge for himself, for they will constitute 
his style. 

One has often heard it said when a runner puts up a 
first-class performance with seemingly comparative ease, 
" What a beautiful style that man has ! " And true 
though this undoubtedly is, how many of these 
" beautiful styles " are the same ? Very few, for each 
is essentially the natural expression of that particular 
runner's ability. 

Assuming, therefore, that above all the sprinter must 
cultivate his innate running qualities, let us turn to 
those more tangible considerations which allow him to 
utilise these qualities to the utmost extent. 

To run a 100 yards as fast as possible means first and 
foremost running straight, for the shortest distance 
between two points is a straight line. To run straight 
necessitates correct balance and perfect body control, 
and this in turn demands a very high degree of co- 
ordination of muscular and nervous systems. Again, 
as the race is run from a position of rest, it is necessary 
to learn that method by which the inertia of the body at 
rest may be overcome with the greatest economy of 
energy and yet the greatest efficiency, i.e. to start well. 
And, having started, one must discover the best way to 
utilise all that is possible of one's energy for the produc- 
tion and maintenance of speed in other words, to run and 
to finish. These are admittedly basic factors of sprinting, 
and now may be considered in more detail. 



SPRINTING 

Section 2. The Start 

One deals with this first not only because it is 
obviously the beginning of the race, but also because it 
is by far the most vital part of it. It is no exaggera- 
tion to say that the majority of sprint races amongst 
men of approximately equal calibre are won or lost in 
the first second. And since the effbit of overcoming 
one's original inertia is so great that the first second 
represents a distance of something less than 5 yards, 
the fundamental importance of successful starting 
will be obvious. It is a very true observation with regard 
to sprinting that a good start means a good finish. Thus 
the initial impetus of starting which aims at the develop- 
ment of maximum momentum in minimum time (i.e. 
" getting quickly into one's running ") requires a 
considerable knowledge of the technical and mechanical 
detail concerned, and much steady, persevering practice 
thereof. The vital factor in the success of a start is the 
acquisition of that correct balance which it is essential 
to maintain throughout the race if it is to be run in the 
straightest line and therefore in the shortest time. 
Perfect body equilibrium at the end of the first stride 
goes a long way to ensuring a rapid and satisfactory 
development of the particular runner's own actual racing 
style and without it fractions of a second and corre- 
spondingly inches and even feet, which are invaluable in 
a sprint race, are squandered and lost. 

It was this lack of body control in the earliest stages 
of a race which was very largely responsible for the 
discarding of the old upright style of starting. It ^as 
thought, and presumably still is, as the method is neter 
seen in use in the present day, that starting from the 
standing position was productive of marked unsteadiness 
in the first few yards running. Be this as it may, there 
is a lot to be said for this old style, which has, since the 
beginning of the century, slowly and gradually dropped 
out of use entirely. It must be remembered that it was 



ATHLETICS 

used by sprinters whose times, at any rate relatively, 
considering the vastly improved conditions of track and 
equipment to-day, were practically the equal of those of 
the super-sprinters of the present day. 

In this form of start the runner places his front foot, 
whichever that may be, and, as in all cases, it is quite 
immaterial, fairly and squarely flat on the ground with 
the toe touching the starting line and the foot at some- 
thing of an angle to this line. The whole weight of the 
body should be on this foot, the corresponding knee 
being slightly bent to allow of a certain amount of 
elasticity in the foot movement and also to permit the 
body and head to be thrown well forward over this leg. 
The rear foot is placed in a hole (the only one required) 
specially dug crosswise to the direction of running, some 
2 feet behind the front foot and just an inch or two to 
one side of it, to ensure comfortable balance. The arms 
meanwhile are held in such a position that when the 
runner starts to move they swing almost automatically 
into that particular action which the runner favours. 

It will be evident that if this position is carefully 
assumed there is no obvious reason why balance should 
not be perfect in fact more perfect than in the modern 
crouch or " all-fours " style, which, after all, is certainly 
not nearly as natural a stance. There is nothing forced 
about the stand-up starter; his arms are more free to 
drop quickly into their usual action ; and since he has 
but to drive his body-weight forward, whereas the crouch 
starter has also to give it upward momentum, it would 
seem more than probable that he is more quickly into 
his normal striding. 

There is really so little adverse criticism possible of 
the stand-up start that one would not be at all surprised 
to see a recrudescence of its popularity in the not too 
distant future, once some sprinter of note has again 
proved its efficacy. 

^ In the meantime, however, the crouch start is in vogue 
and universally adopted in sprint races. With regard 

140 



SPRINTING 

to the reason for this, a parallel has been drawn to the 
animal world, in which, when a beast is preparing to put 
forth some particularly great effort, it automatically 
gathers itself together or crouches, ready for the initial 
spring of its attack. This parallel, however, must not be 
carried too far, for the sprinter neither wants to be so 
tensed up that he is uncomfortable nor does he want to 
leap out into his first stride. The one means loss of the 
all-essential poise ; the other, loss of time before normal 
striding action can be picked up after the momentary 
pause caused by landing from the initial jump foward. 
Again, the sprinter who adopts the crouch start must 
attempt to be just as natural as possible, to assume his 
starting position in the most comfortable and easiest 
possible way, and to start running steadily, without jerk 
or junjp and yet withal rapidly in other words, to glide 
out into full speed as it were. Apart from the actual 
material gain in distance of an efficient start the 
psychological effect of " being out " an inch or two 
ahead of one's competitors a fact which can be sensed 
rather than seen is worth probably a foot or two later 
in the race, and is yet another reason for concentration 
on the development of a sound starting technique. 

Before discussing the various positions required by 
this method of starting it is necessary to describe the 
" holes " which form an essential feature of this style. 
That the start may be successful it is of vital importance 
that these starting holes should be both correctly placed 
and correctly fashioned. First of all one must reiterate 
that one of the sprinter's primary objects is to run straight. 
Furthermore, Nature has normally placed our legs a 
certain distance apart, and it should be the aim of every 
sprinter to maintain this distance as he runs, i.e. to allow 
each leg its own definite straight line to follow. Either 
placing one foot behind the other or running with the 
feet wide of their respective natural lines is an equally 
bad fault. Hence, to ensure at least a correct beginning 
in this respect, let the sprinter stand with toes touching 

141 



ATHLETICS 

the starting line, looking down the track to the finish, 
and then with feet together mark the position of both 
middle toes. Lines drawn back from these two points 
at right angles to the starting line will give the normal 
distance apart that the legs should be both in starting 
and in running. And it is on these two lines, therefore, 
that the required holes will lie. The front hole (as has 
been said, it is immaterial which foot is in front, provided 
it is always the same one) should be placed approximately 
a foot's length or a little less, some 7 to 9 inches, behind 
the starting line. The exact position is found by kneeling 
down, placing the fingers on the starting line, the feet 
on their respective lines at right angles to this as already 
drawn, and simply finding the most comfortable position. 
This will, incidentally, also give the position, by the mark 
made on the track by the back toe, for the rear hole. 
Once the sprinter has made sure of the best positions of 
these two holes for himself, a very good plan is to have 
a piece of string with knots indicating the distances 
required. Incidentally, it should be mentioned that in 
placing the back hole, the sprinter being now in the 
kneeling position, the knee or the rear leg should come 
approximately opposite the instep of the front foot, but, 
as ever, small deviations from any set rulings, providing 
they afford ease and comfort, must be accepted as correct. 
The holes themselves should be dug with a trowel, 
which the sprinter should always have with him as part 
of his equipment, and preferably a flat or mason's trowel. 
The great essential with regard to holes is to see that 
their back wall when dug is square to the direction of 
running. Otherwise they will tend to throw the sprinter 
out of his desired straight line, with consequent inevitable 
loss of balance from the very start. The holes should be 
just deep enough and wide enough to receive comfort- 
ably the ball of the foot, i.e. all that pait of the shoe 
which bears the spikes. Roughly, this depth is about 2| 
to 3 inches, though the front hole can often with 
advantage be rather more shallow than this. 

142 



SPRINTING 

The back wall of the hole should be absolutely 
straight and inclined at an angle of about 75 degrees, 
though if the track be at all soft it is well worth while 
making this back wall practically perpendicular, for it 
is very necessary to have this quite firm to permit the 
rear foot to have all the purchase it requires when the 
start is actually made. The front of the hole should be 
scooped out to avoid any chance of the toe catching it 
as the foot comes out. 

The remaining considerations re the start are best 
discussed under the three sub-headings of the starter's 
commands : " On your 
marks ! " ; " Get set ! " ; 
"Go!" (pistol). (French: 
" A vos marques " ; " Prgt "; 
German : " Auf die Platze " ; 




FIG. 2. 



On your Marks ! "The 
position to be taken up in 
response to this command is 
shown in Fig. 2, which should 
be consulted in connection with 
the subsequent description. 
The sprinter, keeping warmly 
clad until the last possible moment, walks quietly forward 
the two or three yards from where he has been standing 
behind his previously dug holes. He then places one 
foot firmly and squarely in the back hole, the other in 
the front hole, and kneels down comfortably with his 
hands on the starting line. This position must be 
essentially one of ease and relaxation a sort of " lull 
before the storm ! " The knee of the leg correspond- 
ing to the rear foot should, as has been said, be on the 
ground approximately opposite the instep of the front 
foot and about an inch or two to one side of it. The 
relative position of this knee will, of course, depend 
ultimately upon the stature of the particular athlete, and 
especially upon his length of leg. The legs must be so 



ATHLETICS 

adjusted that there is no feeling of cramp or tension. 
The back is held straight and the head and neck should 
bear the same relation to the trunk as they do in the 
normal upright position, i.e. the neck should not be 
bent back, and the habit of looking towards the finishing 
tape, apart from one preliminary glance just to make 
sure that one is facing squarely in the direction it is 
required to run, is definitely to be deprecated. The eyes 
actually should be focussed on that spot, preferably 
previously marked on the track as will be described 
later, where it is intended that the first foot shall strike 
approximately some 3 feet away down the track. 
This is quite possible without any strain when the head 
is held at its natural angle. 

The arms in this position are most comfortable if 
just slightly bent at the elbow. As regards the position 
of the hands on the starting line, there is a definite 
optimum for each individual. This is most simply 
discovered by raising the shoulders a little whilst still 
kneeling, and swinging the arms gently straight back 
and forward. If the shoulders are now again gradually 
lowered, the arms still swinging, a stage will be reached 
when the fingers just brush, and mark, the surface of 
the track. These two marks will give the correct 
positions for the hands on the line. The distance 
between the two hands varies from about 1 8 to 24 inches 
according to the width of the shoulder and of the hip of 
the athlete concerned. But whatever these may be, this 
simple swinging method will give the necessary clearance 
for the legs when these come forward in the actual start, 
and at the same time obviate the almost equally bad 
fault -of having the hands too far apart, which, when the 
" set " position is assumed, leads to the shoulders being 
lower than the back, and a subsequent " dive " start, the 
disadvantages of which will be pointed out later. 

There are several ways of holding the hands. That 
in the diagram is one of the commonest, the thumb and 
index finger being on the line and the remaining fingers 

144 



SPRINTING 

ranged back from the index. Another favourite method 
is to have the tips of both index and middle fingers 
together on the line, the thumb as before, and the other 
two fingers forming the third " leg " of a tripod. Others, 
again, seem to prefer to the elasticity of these two methods 
the firmness and steadiness obtained by placing the 
middle joint of the index and middle fingers together 
with the thumb as before on the starting line. The 
choice is really a matter of individual preference and 
experience. 

" Get Set I " It is this position which is the counter- 
part of the animal's crouch before it springs. The whole 
poise of the body is now 
altered. Every muscle is 
now tensed, every faculty 
on the qui vive. And it 
is now that a satisfactory 
taking up of the prelim- 
inary "On your marks ! " 
position bears good fruit, 
for to remain " set " 
for anything up to two 
seconds, which time is 
perfectly legitimate and 
may be demanded by 
any stringent starter, re- 
quires a high degree of perfected body balance. And 
steadiness at this stage is essential if both a good and 
a fair start is to be made. One does not propose to deal 
with the practice of attempting to " beat the gun " 
it is not only unsportsman-like, but unprofitable if the 
starter knows anything about his business. 

The rear knee is now raised some 12 to 15 inches 
off the ground (see Fig. 3) until the back is parallel 
to the ground. The head and neck still maintain the 
same relative position, i.e. in line with the back, and the 
eyes remain fixed on the spot where the first stride will 
land the leading foot. The arms should now be fully 

K 145 




FIG. 3. 



ATHLETICS 

extended, so that the body's centre oflgravity is thrown 
forward till it comes to lie in the centre of a tripod formed 
by the two arms and the front leg. Equilibrium should 
now be such that if the hands are raised the runner 
will tend to fall forward on his face. No weight should 
be borne by the back leg, whose particular function is 
the provision of propulsive force when the pistol is fired, 
A fault to be avoided is the raising of the hindquarters 
above the shoulders, which, like having the hands too 
far apart, tends to throw the runner downwards as well 
as forwards when he starts, whereas his aim and object 
should be to come straight out of his holes with body 
parallel to the ground and gradually rising, until, as it 
were, this human bullet reaches the optimum height 
of its trajectory some 30 yards down the track a 
height which it must strive to maintain until the 
finish. 

Another common fault is that of bending the neck 
backwards. This automatically produces a strained and 
uncomfortable position and militates against steadiness. 
Though the " set " position is one of tension, it must not 
become one of strain, or else true body balance will be 
lost. At the command " Set ! " a good deep breath 
should be taken and held, and this will in all probability 
last the sprinter throughout the entire race. The 
importance of this breath is that it expands the chest, 
and by so fixing the thorax gives a steady superstructure 
from which the arms can work. 

" Go! " (Pistol). It is in the actual start that the perfect 
co-ordination of body and mind which can only be the 
outcome of much painstaking practice and considerable 
experience shows to most advantage. This co- 
ordination between the sense of hearing and the muscular 
system will reduce the latent period, which to some 
mijiute extent always exists between the firing of the gun 
and the first movement of the runner, to a minimum. 
This first movement is essentially a drive from the rear 
leg and a forward lift from the front. This is admirably 

146 



SPRINTING 

shown in Fig. 4, especially by the sprinter on the 
right (H. M. Abrahams), 

We have already stressed the importance of coming 
out of the holes straight, and this, together with an 
additional impetus, is ensured by a correct arm action. 
There are various styles and lack of style in arm action, 
but whatever is the runner's normal action he should 
adopt it from the moment the gun goes off. In the 
illustration all three runners are showing this well. 
The man on the right favours a cross-arm swing, and 




FIG. 4. 

the other two (the man on the left being slightly ahead 
of his opponents at this early stage) are using back and 
forward piston arm action; but all three have adopted 
the correct position for their respective arms even before 
the first stride is completed. 

As regards this first stride, we are of the opinion that 
it should form part of a regular series of gradually length- 
ening strides which ultimately take the runner into his 
full speed without any perceptible change of action. 
The " chopped " or abbreviated first stride, followed 
by some five or six short, very rapid strides, and then by a 
definite lengthening out into normal striding a plan 

H7 



ATHLETICS 

very commonly adopted by American sprinters -seems 
most conducive to lack of steadiness and consequent early 
loss of form. The start should be essentially a smooth, 
even gliding out from the holes, with a uniform accelera* 
tion of speed to the maximum. The first stride, therefore, 
will vary in length according to the individual, and he 
should ascertain by repeated practice SMfhere his first foot 
out tends to land normally without any conscious effort 
towards either lengthening or shortening this stride. 
The average length of the first stride is about three foot 
lengths of the particular sprinter. Once a runner has 
discovered his own particular length, he should take- 
particular note of it and in practice as well as races mark 
this spot on the track in fiont of him and make sure he 
hits it every time he starts. The knotted string already 
mentioned can be made of sufficient length to include 
this marking also, as well as that of tjie two starting holes* 
It is obvious that all energy at the start should be 
concentrated on the production of momentum, and hence 
any early exaggeration of knee-lift (the feet in the first 
few strides should never be raised more than 6 inche$ 
above the ground) and any early tendency to raise the 
trunk to a more upright position are to be deprecated. 
Too long a first stride is one of the commonest causes 
of this last-mentioned fault. In reaching out for a long 
first stride the centre of gravity is thrown back, the body 
becomes more upright, and energy is unnecessarily dissi- 
pated with resultant loss of development of speed. Too 
short a first stride, on the other hand, is the equivalent 
of the jabbed or chopped stride, the disadvantages of 
which have already been pointed out. 

Section 3. Striding 

(Under this heading it is intended to discuss the race 
as apart from the actual start and the finish. It is 
chiefly in this connection that the question of style and 
form crops up. As has been said, for the sprinter all 

148 



SPRINTING 

possible available energy must be put into the produc- 
tion of speed and hence certain fundamental truths will 
simply need a mention. 

Again one must stress the importance of running 
straight. Any deviation from the line which marks the 
shortest distance between start and finish means loss of 
time. Then, whatever the style adopted by the sprinter, 
it must be such as to be capable of maintaining true 
body balance. Any energy required to correct a wobble 
or some uneven or uncontrolled leg or arm movement 
is wasted energy. 

It will be obvious, too, that since the forward direction 
at the greatest velocity is the sprinter's real objective, 
any energy devoted to upward spring or bounding is lost 
as far as the actual result of the race is concerned. In 
other words, one must run as close to the ground as 
possible. 

( There are two factors in running a sprint race which 
have to be balanced to a nicety to achieve the best 
results. These are the length of the strides used to cover 
a certain distance and the rapidity with which those 
strides are taken. And the latter is really the more 
important factor, for it has been amply proved that the 
man with the quicker action and the relatively slightly 
shorter stride can produce a better time than the man 
whose length of stride prevents his getting in quite so 
many strides in covering any given distance. The 
tendency is always rather to overstride, and the sprinter 
must aim at that length which will allow him the 
quickest action. Though, of course, this length will 
vary considerably according to the type of sprinter an 
average stride when travelling at full speed should lie 
between 7 feet and 7 feet 9 inches. ^ 

In the following considerations of striding styles, 
Fig. 5 should be consulted. 

For simplicity one may consider the body of the 
splinter during his race under the three headings of*(a) 
Head and Trunk, () Arms and (c) Legs. 

149 



ATHLETICS 

(a) Head and Trunk. One of the most important 
factors in good sprinting is the cultivation of a correct 
" body lean " or " running angle." We have shown 
how, on leaving the holes, the body is almost parallel 
to the ground.jf It should at all costs never be allowed 
to become quite upright, for the maintenance of a 
certain amount of forward body lean keeps the centre 
of gravity thrown forward, thus both materially assisting 
good balance and, by taking the body weight very largely 

off the legs, leaving them 
free to act more or less 
purely as propulsive 
agents. By its forward 
lean the body should 
be, as it were, con- 
tinually falling forward, 
and hence drawing the 
legs after it, and there- 
fore reducing to a 
minimum the time of 
contact with the ground, 
thereby conserving en- 
ergy for th^ production 
of speed.) Furthermore, 
this drawing forward of 
the legs accomplishes 
an additional saving of 
energy in ^making it im- 
possible for [the runner 
to indulge in any upward drive or bound to any 
extent. One of the chief arguments in favour of a 
shorter stride is that it is conducive to a better running 
angle. This angle when the runner is in full stride, 
which will not occur until almost one-third of a 100 
yards race is run, should be such that when the back 
leg is fully extended, this leg, the back and the head 
and neck should form a straight line (see Fig. 5), at 
about 60 degrees to the horizontal. 

150 




FIG. 5. 



SPRINTING 

Erect running also involves considerable jarring- 
complaint often to be noted in flat-footed runners. On 
the other hand, it must be noted that an over-exaggerated 
body lean is almost as bad a fault as being too erect. 
It leads to a staggering gait, a continual state of over- 
balance, which idea, of course, is inimical to any 
possibility of fast running. 

The upper part of the body, as has been stated 
previously, was more or less fixed by the initial breath 
taken on the starter's command " Get set ! " and from 
this compact centre the arms can work to greatest 
advantage. 

The head and neck must throughout the race be kept 
in relatively the same position to the trunk that they have 
when standing in the erect posture. (Any tendency to 
let the head go back the so-called " chin-lift " which 
is always hard to control, particularly at the end of a 
race, must be as far as possible checked completely. | 

() Arms.$\n sprinting the arms are the more import- 
ant members, for on their correct action depends the 
efficiency of the legs' work. , The arms are the balancing 
factors of the sprinting machine, and the importance of 
balance has already been well emphasised. Whatever 
style of arm action may be adopted, provided it works 
harmoniously with the legs, it will serve to control the 
latter and hence to produce straighter and more powerful 
running. ^ 

Again, whatever style the sprinter may decide suits 
him best, there are certain fundamental facts with regard 
to arm action which may well be considered before one 
enters into a brief discussion of the most common 
varieties of style. 

The essential fact to bear in mind is that the arms are 
body controls. It is therefore obvious that an arm 
which is swung outside what may be termed the sphere 
of body balance is a retrograde force. By this one means 
that the arm which swings so wide of the body that the 
bands are^clear of it either behind, or to the side, or, for 



ATHLETICS 

that matter, equally as much, above the shoulder level, 
is not only useless as an adjunct to the propulsive forces, 
but definitely a drawback. The lack of arm control is 
evident in all bad sprinters throughout the race, but the 
fault is found particularly at the start and the finish, 
even in first-class runners. Always aim at maintaining 
the arm action one adopts from gun to tape. Any arm 
action must have as its basis a low carriage of the hands, 
and, furthermore, must be such that it is possible to 
obtain by it perfect synchrony with the leg action. One 
particular arm must always be in action at the same 
moment as the opposite leg if true poise and equilibrium 
are to be satisfactorily maintained. 

Again, the shoulders in any style must be brought 
into play, for a well-used shoulder is a powerful adjuvant 
to the assistance rendered by the arms. The shoulders, 
however, should never be twisted nor shrugged, but, like 
the rest of the upper part of the body, held relatively 
steady, level, and facing as far as possible to the front, 
i.e. in that position in which they can most suitably serve 
as a fulcrum, from which the arms may work. 

The two most prevalent styles are the forward and 
backward " drive " or " piston " method (in which, 
with the arm locked at the elbow, the arms are forced 
from front to rear in a line parallel to that in which one 
is running, with the forearm all the time being kept 
roughly parallel to the ground) and the " cross-swing " 
(in which the arms are worked from side to side with a 
sort of rotary movement, the hands being about the level 
of the pit of the stomach and the elbows turned well out). 
A variation of the first of these, " the chop," one cannot 
advocate, as its very nature an upward and downward 
swing from hip to shoulder with the hands directed 
forward must inevitably lead to a forcing back of the 
centre of gravity and much too erect a carriage. Both 
the first two styles mentioned have many advocates, and 
it would be unwise to say one is right and the other 
wrong. : Though admittedly both give good control, it 



. SPRINTING 

is hard to see how a swing backward and forward can 
possibly add anything to one's impetus, for one part of 
the movement is exactly counteracted by the other. 
In the cross-swing, on the other hand, there is at no 
time any backward force applied, thus allowing the legs 
to make a relatively greater propulsive effort in the 
forward direction. The simile of the shot from the gun 
may again be used here, for the rotary cross-swing action 
corresponds to the rifling of a gun barrel, which, as 
everyone knows, serves to keep the missile in this case 
represented by the human body travelling in a dead 
straight line. 

The choice of an arm action, however, is essentially 
a matter for the individual, but whatever his choice he 
must be careful to see that it fulfils the fundamentals 
noted above. To these may be added, perhaps, the 
advantage of running with a closed fist always, whether 
this be gripping a running cork or not. 

(c) Legs. As we have said, the legs are really only 
secondary to the arms, though, of course, being the 
actual propulsive agents they are of vital importance. 
jBut a good arm action will automatically ensure efficient 
leg work. The movement is essentially a powerful stride, 
the front leg being lifted well up (" knee-lift ") and 
thrown out straight to the front, each in its particular 
line. This should ensure the foot landing with toes and 
ankle in line, and the foot pointing straight ahead. The 
sprinter must be " up on his toes " all the time. As we 
have said, the flat-footed runner is the erect runner, and 
consequently relatively slow. Though the action, always 
assisted by a good body lean, is really a reaching out for 
distance, the importance of avoiding over-striding has 
already been stressed, jj Again, though one must be on 
the toes, any bounding element in the stride is the 
equivalent of wasted energy, as the feet should always 
be as near the ground as possible and on it for as 
short a time as possible. 

The common fault of kicking the foot up behind is 

153 



ATHLETICS 

automatically conquered by a good knee-lift, though, 
of course, it must be remembered that this, too, can be 
overdone to the extent of driving the body up into^ an 
erect posture. One must never run with the knees bent ; 
the drive from the leg comes from the locking of the knee 
(see Fig. 5) as the body comes forward over the foot 
then on the ground. Such faults as running with one 
foot striking the ground directly in front of its fellow, or, 
on the other hand, with a wide base and the feet too far 
apart, are almost too obvious to need comment. 

Leg action is not difficult it is mainly natural and if 
one keeps aware of the possibility of developing certain 
minor faults, it is enough to say, " Look after the arms 
and, the legs will look after themselves ! " ) 

Section 4. The Finish 

Even as many a good race is won in the first few 
yards, so it is lost in the last few. In sprinting one 
is so apt to become intrigued with all the interesting 
details of proper starting technique that thought and 
practice of that most important item, the finish, are 
inclined to be neglected. As will be shown later, it is 
not difficult to train for a finish, and the results well 
repay the effort. 

We are of the opinion that for the average sprinter the 
best finish to aim at is none at all ! By this apparent 
paradox one means that the sprinter should simply " run 
through " the tape, aim at a point some 10 yards or so 
beyond it, and concentrate purely on maintaining his 
style at its maximum efficiency right up to the very last 
moment. There are, however, various definite forms of 
finish which in the hands of an experienced and carefully 
trained sprinter may be of advantage. Chief of these, 
perhaps, is the " drop " finish, in which practically in 
the last stride the chest is thrust forwards and down- 
wards, the arms being dropped and thrown back a little. 
A modified form of this, and, incidentally, a very 

'54 



SPRINTING 

perfect finish, is shown in Fig. 6 (J. E. London). 
Another form is tfrat known as the " throw " finish, in 
which in the last stride one side of the body one 
shoulder in particular is thrown strongly forward 
lifted off the ground as it were against the tape. In that 
this inevitably means some loss of the rhythm of striding 
and of body balance one is inclined to think it of doubtful 
value. And the 
same remark, but 
to a much greater 
degree, applies to 
the " jump " finish, 
despite the fact that 
it is consistently 
used by such a 
master of sprinting 
as C. W. Paddock. 
In this style a de- 
finite long jump is 
made from a point 
some 2 yards or so 
from the tape, but 
it seems obvious, 
surely, that not only 
must the complete 
change of action 
from striding to 
leaping cause some F IG . 6 . 

shade of hesitation, 

however slight, but also that the energy put into the 
upward movement of the " jump " would be much better 
expended in a purely forward direction at this stage of 
the race. 

Whatever method is adopted, a universal rule to be 
followed out is always to slow up gradually after finishing. 
More muscular trouble comes to the genus sprinter after 
the tape has been broken than from any other part of his 
sphere of activity. 

'55 




ATHLETICS 

Section 5. Training 

We intend in this section to deal with 'a few points 
of particular applicability to the sprinter. He, of .course, 
like all other athletes, must first have undergone a course 
of general training, the fundamentals of which are fully 
dealt with in a previous chapter. 

The sprinter has two primary objects in his training : 
the one, perfect muscular condition ; and the other, even 
more important, perfect control, which means the 
training of his nervous system to co-ordinate with his 
muscles. He has not to worry about tactics and judg- 
ment, he has but to develop his capacity for producing 
speed. 

It is well, however, for the would-be sprinter to realise 
that this process is a lengthy one, and though always an 
interesting, nevertheless an arduous one. A sprinter 
cannot be made in a week nor yet in a month. Hence the 
great importance of training to schedule. Be content 
to go slow, to absorb one by one the various minutiae of 
sprinting technique until each is so inculcated into your 
very being that the result is almost automatic perfection 
the maximum of speed with what is apparently the 
minimum of effort. As someone has said, it is a process 
of " facilitation by repetition." 

In the early stages of training, indoor exercises and 
walking, with a certain limited amount of good massage, 
are the chief indications. The walking should, for the 
sprinter, be more in the nature of a stroll just suffi- 
ciently fast to keep him warm and by stimulating a good 
circulation help to loosen up his muscles. The exercises 
used are many and varied, and should form not only the 
basis of the early part of his training, but really to some 
greater or less degree according to the season, etc., a 
part of the daily routine of his life. The best of all 
exercises is the closest possible imitation of one's running 
action that can be performed in a limited space. This 
allows of a constant repetition and practice of the 

156 



SPRINTING 

movements that will ultimately be required on the track, 
and hence tends to the production of that machine-like 
automaticity that the sprinter so greatly needs. The 
mere fact of having to perform this exercise within a 
space of about a square yard which in itself will at 
first prove to be a difficult task is conducive to gradual 
improvement of powers of balance, whilst simply by 
constant practice one finds that there occurs a general 
speeding up of all the movements which comprise a 
sprinting action, together with a very satisfying increase 
in one's ability to co-ordinate body and mind. Running 
up stairs, skipping, dumb-bell exercises and physical 
jerks generally are all good for the sprinter. He must 
in his training be particularly careful not to neglect his 
shoulder and arm development; and the use of lead 
weights in practising an arm action or arm exercises is of 
great assistance in strengthening the muscles concerned. 
When the stage of getting out on the track is reached, 
the important thing is to have a plan of action and to 
stick to it. Train when you train it both stimulates 
the brain to a higher pitch of keenness and quickness 
and avoids the obvious physical disadvantages of 
catching cold. A really hot sun is the only excusable 
cause for neglecting this dictum ! Track training 
should always begin with the process of " limbering 
up " just jogging about; stretching the muscles, 
gradually working up till one is moving a little faster, 
always on the toes and with the knees well up. This 
serves to loosen up all the muscles and get the sprinter 
into suitable condition for the more strenuous work of 
the day. This should always include a certain number 
of starts, and in this, as in all sprinting training, it is of 
the greatest assistance to train in company and if possible 
with a friend, especially one who knows something about 
the business in hand. Six starts are ample for one day, 
and at first most of them should be made without a gun 
and as slowly as though one were imitating a slow motion 
cinematograph picture at the same time concentrating 

'57 



ATHLETICS 

upon all the many details of starting technique discussed 
previously. Later, starting from the gun is most 
valuable. With regard to actual running, this should 
be carefully moderated. In the earlier stages an 
occasional 120 or 150 yards is excellent for producing 
sufficient stamina. After one is relatively fit, however, 
apart from a " hundred " run full out every week or so 
preferably not " against the watch " one's running 
should consist of much " pattering/ 1 or practice of 
rapidity of action, allowing this three or four times to 
break out into full striding for 50 yards or so and then 
on to some 30 yards of racing, followed by a steady 
slowing up. Various alternatives to such a scheme to 
suit particular conditions or requirements will be obvious. 
And never forget that a day's training work is incomplete 
without practising a finish. This is most simply done 
by striding for some 40 yards or so to a marked line, then 
accelerating to full speed up to another marked line 
some 40 yards farther on, and at this second line making 
a definite finishing effort. 

Once fitness has been attained, and especially if one 
is racing every week-end, two other outings on the track 
during the week are ample to maintain condition, and 
roughly half an hour should be plenty of time on these 
outings to get all the practice required. 

In conclusion, in training or in racing the sprinter 
must pay particular attention to his running shoes, and 
the way they are worn. A good shoe is worth anything 
up to 2 yards in a " hundred 1 " 

Section 6. The 220 Yards 

Though to-day it seems natural to class the 220 
yards race automatically with the regular standard 
events of a programme, it had practically no history 
before the opening of this century. The 1 900 Olympic 
Games of Paris were the first to see it (200 metres) 
featuring, and it was not until 1902 that it became 

158 



SPRINTING 

an A.A.A. Championship event, whilst it is a note- 
worthy fact that even to this day it is not in the 
Oxford v. Cambridge programme, though in their 
combined meetings with the great American Univer- 
sities it now occurs regularly. 

The Olympic Games 200 metres has so far been an 
" all- American " affair, having been won five times by 
the United States and twice by Canada. The former 
country shares the Olympic record of 2i seconds (in 
the joint persons of A. Hahn, 1 904 and J. V. Scholz, 
1924) with Germany (KOrnig, Amsterdam, 1928), and 
holds the world's record of 2of seconds, which stands 
to the credit of R. A. Locke. This amazing time 
represents an average speed of 22 m.p.h. over the whole 
distance ! 

Though instituted in 1902, the A.A.A. " furlong " 
was not run in under 22 seconds until eleven years later, 
when W, Applegarth won this distinction. To his 
credit also stands the British record for this distance of 
2i seconds, only seconds outside the world's record. 
It is indicative of the advance in sprinting ability since 
the War that of the ten championships run to date seven 
of the times recorded have been inside 22 seconds, 
though it needs must be recorded that in the whole 
series of 220 yards championships some 40 per 
cent, of victories have been claimed by non-English 
sprinters. 

In this country the 220 yards is practically always 
run round a bend, the several runners, therefore, 
starting en Echelon ; but in other countries, and America 
in particular, tracks with a " straightaway " furlong are 
rather the rule than the exception. Though, according 
to the original definition of sprinting agreed upon at the 
beginning of this chapter, the 220 yards undoubtedly 
comes under the heading of sprint races, still it is only 
fair to say that in this as in every race of 1 50 yards (taking 
this as a purely arbitrary figure) and over there is either 
consciously or unconsciously a period of the race when 

'59 



ATHLETICS 

the runner rests on his momentum as it were, in an 
attempt to conserve his remaining supply of energy for 
a final burst, the length of which will, of course, depend 
upon individual ability. 

The " 220 man " as a type tends to be of rather bigger 
build than the shorter distance sprinter, taller, with big 
legs very strongly muscled, and it is possible for such a 
man of exceptional strength to run his 220 yards at his 
maximum speed all the way. But probably for the 
majority of runners the furlong is divided into a sprint 
start of some 75 yards, a middle stage, when momentum 
is maintained but not definitely increased, of about 75 
to 100 yards (the distance depending upon the capacity 
for finishing), and a third stage of from 50 to 70 
yards. 

The added element that comes into this race when 
comparing it with the " hundred " is stamina, and it is 
almost incredible how completely even a fit runner can 
exhaust his energy supply in running so relatively short 
a distance. For this reason, to the remarks already 
made on sprinting training one must add the necessity 
for " working out " over longer distances up to and 
including 300 yards. The acquisition of this stamina is 
of very vital importance, for it is the gruelling fight up the 
straight, when it has been estimated that even the trained 
athlete is travelling at at least two yards per second 
slower than his possible full speed, that so often means 
the difference between victory and defeat. And it is in 
this final stage also that the continued practice of a 
definite sprinting style stands one in good stead, for the 
ability to retain form right through to the end of a " 220" 
is an almost invaluable asset. As regards the various 
points already discussed in connection with starting, 
striding and finishing, these apply equally well over the 
longer distance and must be practised just as assiduously. 
One point, perhaps, may be mentioned regarding the 
circumnavigation of a bend when the race is run round 
a curve, and this is that an arm action in which the inside 

1 60 



SPRINTING 

arm is dropped lower while the other arm's movement 



is increased in force tends to keep the body's centre of 
gravity from being thrown out, and hence to the main- 
tenance of a more stable equilibrium than would other- 
wise be the case when not running down a straight. 



161 



CHAPTER VII 

MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

Section i. General Principles 

MlDDLE-distance races include anything from 
a quarter-mile to a mile. This statement may 
not pass unchallenged by those who wish to 
preserve the nomenclature of the nineteenth or even 
early twentieth century ; but it seems justified if one 
considers for a moment the quality of the various races. 

It is true, of course, that the programmes at American 
sports meetings to-day describe the quarter-mile as the 
440 yards dash, presumably indicating thereby the 
intention to classify this event as a sprint ; but very few 
people can run a quarter from pillar to post as did Eric 
Liddell in the final of the 400 metres (437*45 yards) at 
the Olympic Games of 1924. 

It is, strictly speaking, a mistake to describe the average 
method of running a quarter, no matter how rapidly and 
brilliantly, as sprinting^ which implies top-gear the whole 
way and even time (or faster), unless one is prepared to 
call half-miling sprinting also, on the ground that one 
attempts to go his fastest all the way, capping a 53-54 
first quarter with whatever burst of energy one may ! 
Therefore, it is probably more logical to confine the 
term sprinting to races up to and including 300 yards, 
grouping the quarter with middle-distance events, and 
in particular because most quarter-milers, unless they 
are pure sprinters attempting an unusually lengthy 
event, adopt methods of running and tactics similar to 
those employed in the half-mile. 

For slightly different, but, it is submitted, equally 

162 



MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

sound reasons, the mile ought to be regarded as a middle- 
distance event. In these days of fast miles, when 4-20 
is considered almost commonplace and 2-4 or 2-6 is 
regular time for the first half of a championship race, the 
inclusion of the mile among long-distance events seems 
erroneous, no matter what may be the private feelings 
of the competitor during the progress of the race. And 
to clinch the argument, scarcely a miler of note in recent 
years, with the exception of the remarkable Nurmi, has 
been a successful performer over longer distances 
indeed the modern miler is usually the half-mile type of 
runner. 

It is by reason of this classification of the quarter and 
one mile and their affinities to the half-mile that it is 
possible to apply most of the suggestions about to be 
made to all three events. Moreover, they may be 
applied, mutatis mutandis^ to those races less frequently 
run in this country which fall into this class, namely the 
600 yards, 1000 yards and 1500 metres. The first is 
really an elongated quarter of a particularly exhausting 
kind, usually run by the half-miler ; the second is run 
as an extension of the half ; the third is the Olympic and 
international event which takes the place of the English 
and American mile, and which is about 120 yards 
short of that distance. It is proposed, therefore, to 
consider the general principles which may be said to 
govern middle-distance running, and to pay further and 
individual attention to the particular events later in this 
chapter. Before discussing these principles, however, 
perhaps an analysis of the types of athlete which comprise 
middle-distance runners may not be out of place. 

Except in the quarter-mile, the middle-distance runner 
is almost invariably spare and slim, of medium height, 
long in the leg, with a springy carriage, quite deep- 
chested, and possessed of great powers of endurance and 
a rich store of nervous energy. The muscular develop- 
ment is less pronounced than in the case of the sprinter, 
length taking the place of thickness ; and although the 

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ATHLETICS 

quarter-miler may be a middle or even a heavyweight, 
the true middle-distance runner is light in weight, with 
length of stride as a compensation. 

Let it not be imagined, however, that in order to be a 
successful middle-distance runner one needs to possess 
all these physical attributes. The case is far otherwise. 
Generalisations are proverbially dangerous and perhaps 
unusually so in athletics, wherein no two competitors are 
alike,. Therefore, whilst it will be found that most 
middle-distance runners are endowed with the majority 
of the qualities outlined above, there is no reason what- 
ever why athletes who are physical exceptions thereto 
should not succeed. They will succeed indeed, either in 
spite of their lack of what may appear to be essential 
qualities (e.g. a long stride) or in consequence of their 
persistent cultivation of such qualities as they do possess. 
Indeed, as probably the perfectly endowed individual 
runner has not yet been nor ever will be born, one may 
safely say that each athlete depends upon such develop- 
ment of natural talent for most of his success, and, 
further, that according to the lack or development of 
various qualities will his best distance and method of 
running be determined. 

Roughly speaking, five categories of middle-distance 
runner exist. In the two chief are to be found those who 
combine (a) the quarter and the half, () the half and the 
mile. In the third, and rarest category, are those who 
excel over all three distances. The fourth and fifth 
embrace those who combine quarter-miling with pure 
sprinting or who do not descend (with great success) 
below a mile. 

Among the most brilliant exponents of quarter and 
half-miling who belong to the first category may be 
mentioned P. Edwards of Canada, capable of 1-52 
and inside 49 ; Ted. Meredith, former world's record 
holder at both distances, and present holder at 440 
yards with 471 ; the German, Hans Braun, who fell in 
the late War, and who won the A.A.A. Half-mile 

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MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

Championship in 1909-1 1-12 ; and E. C. Bredin, who, 
some thirty odd years ago, under less favourable con- 
ditions than those pertaining to-day, won championships 
in 49 and I'SSk- I n a slightly different category, 
although belonging to this type of runner, are the late 
Captain Halswelle, winner of the 400 metres in the 1908 
Olympic Games, who still holds the British quarter-mile 
record (481), and who excelled also at 600 yards ; and 
in the late 'eighties H. C. L. Tindall, who still holds the 
championship record of 48^, and formerly held the 
record for 600 yards. Of these men, Edwards is fairly 
tall and relies on a colossal stride rather than any 
definite sprint finish ; Meredith was tremendously 
powerful, rather stocky and very fast ; Braun, a beautiful 
stylist, slim and long-striding ; and Tindall, tall and 
spare. 

In the second group (those who combine the mile and 
half-mile), Albert Hill, winner of the Olympic 1500 and 
800 metres in 1920 and holder of the British mile record 
(4-13^), C. Ellis, Lloyd Hahn (i-$iS- and 4*12!, both 
indoors) and the young Frenchman, S6ra Martin, who 
holds the world's record for the 800 metres (i-^Of), 
are perhaps the best modern examples ; and prominent 
pre-War experts were P. J. Baker, W. E. Lutyens, 
F . J. K. Cross, and J. P. Jones of Cornell, who achieved 
i m S3\ and 4- 141. With the exception of Ellis and Hahn, 
who are stocky, these men are slim, fairly tall and long- 
striding, and they are all gifted with a great degree of 
stamina. 

The third important group contains the rar* aves who 
can excel at the 440, 880 and mile. Many of those who 
belong to the second group above mentioned are capable 
of doing good time in the quarter indeed, it is inevitable 
thatt he first-class half-miler and even miler should do 
so but to excel in all three is granted to exceeding few. 
The greatest of them at the present day is undoubtedly 
Dr. Otto Peltzer, who holds the world's record at no fewer 
than four distances 500, 1000 and 1500 metres, and 



ATHLETICS 

880 yards. About 6 feet 2 inches in height, very spare, 
amazingly long in the leg with devastatingly long 
strides, and gifted with tremendous nervous force, he is 
one of the most remarkable athletes the world has ever 
seen. England has given the world another master 
runner, H. B. Stallard, the only man to win the British 
mile, half-mile and quarter-mile championships, also very 
slim, long-striding and richly endowed with nervous 
energy ; and the American M. W. Sheppard is the third 
man whose brilliance entitles him to a niche in this 
highest hall of middle-distance fame, for he has won not 
only the 1500 and 800 metres in the Olympics, but also 
held until quite recently the world's record at 600 yards. 
To the fourth and fifth categories belong those 
athletes poles apart, and many of them most magnificent, 
who either combine the quarter-mile with pure sprinting 
or run the mile alone of the middle-distance events. 
Among the former, Eric Liddell, British record holder 
for the 100 yards (9iV) and Olympic record holder for 
the 400 metres (47f), and Guy Butler, joint record 
holder for the 300 yards (30^) and second and third in 
the Olympic 400 metres in 1920 and 1924, are brilliant 
performers. Liddell is not tall, but very sturdy, and 
capable of sustaining a quick and by no means short 
stride for the full quarter ; Butler is a true quarter-miler 
of tremendous build and strength, 6 feet 3 inches, long- 
striding, and of great heart and lung capacity, character- 
istic indeed of the quarter-miler who cannot excel at a 
longer distance. Among the fifth group one might cite 
the Oxonian, A. N. S. Jackson, winner at Stockholm of 
the 1 500 metres in then record time ; W. G. George, 
erstwhile mile record holder; the young Frenchman, 
Ladoumdgue; and the great Nurmi, comparable only 
with Shrubb in this respect, that both could run a 
splendid mile or 1 500 metres but found it the minimum 
distance which he could cover at record-breaking speed. 
Finally, a unique exception to all this grouping is the 
South African, Bevil Rudd, winner of the Olympic 400 

166 



MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

metres in 1920, British champion over 440 and 880 
yards, and capable of a 10 dead 100 yards. 

It will thus be evident that all types of men are 
included among middle-distance runners, and that 
whilst excellence at one distance is usually accompanied 
by excellence over another, such is not invariably the 
case. But if an athlete finds middle-distance running 
his chief pleasure on the track, he may be well advised, 
if he has not already done so, to attempt distances other 
than his favourite, thereby either discovering one more 
suitable, adding to his repertoire, or improving his skill. 

This somewhat lengthy digression serves to prove, if 
proof be needed, the statement made earlier in these 
pages that generalisations are dangerous in athletics, and 
that particularly perhaps in middle-distance running men 
of widely different physique and style may dispute the 
same events. Yet inasmuch as the events themselves 
are common ground, the principles of technique attached 
to them affect each athlete in a similar manner, and it is 
therefore profitable to discuss middle-distance races as 
a whole before dealing with the events individually. 

Probably the first idea which mention of the word 
athletics evokes in the lay mind is the vast amount of 
severe training involved. That the popular idea is 
rather exaggerated has been suggested in the earlier 
chapters of this book, where the true meaning of training, 
as generally approved in these days, has been explained. 
It would be superfluous to reiterate here at any length 
the preliminary steps in training, and the additional 
suggestions which follow assume that the athlete has 
already made himself fit. By this is meant, of course, 
that his wind is sound and his stamina built up, his 
muscles supple and freed from all trace of stiffness* It 
is also assumed that he is indulging in the most useful 
training asset sufficient sleep, especially "beauty" sleep 
and that he is regulating his diet. This does not imply 
ascetic abstinence from all good things and tasty dishes, 
but moderation and a preference for plain rather than 

167 



ATHLETICS 

rich food, fixed meal hours, and strict moderation in the 
absorption of alcohol. Smoking has been discussed 
elsewhere : it offers no advantage I What, then, are the 
further forms of training to be pursued ? 

Essentially, the only additional requirement of a fit 
man who is in a condition to race is " tuning-up." 
But the compendious nature of this phrase varies a good 
deal according to the proficiency of the performer. The 
veteran will indeed need little more than speeding-up 
to be in thorough shape ; the novice will have to study 
style and technique as well. Fortunately this study is by 
no means uninteresting. 

The corner-stone to success in middle-distance running 
is style. A good style, whether natural or cultivated, 
results in economy of effort, which is vital in races where 
every ounce of energy is demanded, and for the 
spectator such grace and beauty that the phrase " the 
poetry of motion " can be justly applied. The primary 
object of games is admittedly recreation ; but it is 
proper to recall that beauty in the display of physical 
effort has a tonic influence upon the mind, as the 
ancient Greeks realised. 

Technique, unlike style, is rarely natural. Starting, 
speed at the start and finish of races, knowledge of pace 
and tactics are acquired by practice and experience. 
The part they play in successful middle-distance running 
is of an importance second only to that of good style ; 
and, indeed, it does happen that faulty stylists succeed 
in spite of themselves, but pioor tacticians never. 

Good style has been said to induce economy of effort. 
Why is this so necessary in middle-distance races ? 
It is evident that once the sprint races are left behind, 
in which the whole effort is sustained at practically a 
maximum throughout, there enters into running an 
element of judgment whereby the amount of energy the 
athlete possesses shall be so employed that none is wasted 
and that complete exhaustion does not occur before the 
finish. Obviously the race will, in most cases, be most 

168 



MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

fatiguing near the close, during the final sprint in fact, 
therefore everything possible should be done to conserve 
energy for the ultimate struggle. What measures can be 
adopted to ensure this ? 

In the first place, the novice usually has faults of 
carriage and action. The head and body should be 
slightly inclined forward, and it is perhaps curious to 
note that when the head is properly set the body 
angle follows almost automatically. It is not diffi- 
cult to acquire the proper carriage of the head and 
trunk if the following general rule be observed. The 
eyes should be fixed on a spot on the track some 
10 to 12 yards ahead (often enough, of course, the small 
of an opponent's back meets the gaze in a race) and the 
consequent inclination of the head to dip forward, 
followed in turn by the body, does the rest. It is certainly 
true that the carriage of the body in a mile is more upright 
than in a quarter ; but the rule given should be applied 
to either distance, for the body lean adjusts itself almost 
automatically in accordance with one's speed. 

The reason for this forward lean is, apart from 
gracefulness, twofold. In the first place it avoids strain 
a head flung back tends to tighten the neck and impede 
the breathing ; secondly, it permits a maximum stride. 
The more upright the body, the more prancing the 
stride ; and as running is not to be confused with 
trotting, a high-stepping action is to be condemned. 
Within limits to be discussed in a moment the runner 
should be anxious to keep his stride as long as possible, 
and whenever the head and trunk are upright or flung 
back several inches are clipped off each stride, as can 
be observed at any sports meeting. Particularly does 
this tendency creep in towards the end of a race, when 
through fatigue the natural impulse is to set the teeth, 
fling up the head, and struggle. Only stern discipline 
can overcome this habit ; but the advantage gained by 
a man who can finish in good form is remarkable. It is 
erroneous to suppose that clenched fists beating the air 

169 



ATHLETICS 

and head held proudly high, every ounce of energy being 
expended, are the proper method of sprinting for the 
tape. Not only is the stride shortened and the breathing 
impeded, but in a very tight finish the man who is leaning 
forward will get the verdict, for his trunk crosses the line 
first 1 

Faulty arm or leg action spoils many a style otherwise 
promising. No one should use his arms as if he were 
climbing a rope, nor swing them as if holding a racket. 
The ideal arm action aims at elimination of effort during 
those parts of the race where one is coasting or striding, 
and at assistance when sprinting. During the middle 
portion of a race and every middle-distance race except 
the pillar-to-post quarter is in three sections, fast start, 
striding, sprint finish the arms should swing perfectly 
easily at the side, only slightly more than in walking. 
The swing should be straight forward and back, not 
across the body. This cross-swing is pernicious when 
striding, however advantageous it may be to the pure 
sprinter, for it throws the body too far forward (almost 
as bad as too far back), and being less natural tends to 
exaggerate the arm movement. The arms should be 
slightly bent, elbows in to the side, and hands not 
clenched. Corks seem superfluous. It is quite astonish- 
ing to find how much energy is saved by not working 
the arms violently until the absolutely essential moment 
the sprint home when the strength conserved in the 
shoulders can be liberated to assist the quickened leg 
movement. 

Of course during the initial sprint from the holes, and 
at the finish, the arm action becomes that of a sprinter. 
As has been indicated in the chapter devoted to that 
topic, there exist two schools of thought on sprinting 
arm-action the Mussabini, across the body, and the 
American, straight through. To suggest which is the 
better would come ungraciously from a middle-distance 
runner ; but in recommending an action for adoption 
by middle-distance runners the writers are forced to 

170 



MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

differentiate. And it is pretty evident that opinion 
favours the American piston action for middlerdistance 
running, provided the head and body are kept properly 
controlled. The writers have no hesitation in advocating 
this straight-through drive, which is a quickening of the 
quiet action employed when striding ; but they must 
admit that the other action may prove more suitable 
to some athletes, particularly sprint quarter-milers and 
those who can in no other way keep their body leaning 
forward at the finish. There is a word of caution to be 
added : the piston action should not be so exaggerated 
that the hand rises too high in front or that the elbow 
swings too high behind. 

It is believed that for the 1500 metres and the mile 
the body carriage and arm action here described are the 
best ; but it is proper to point out that Nurmi and Larva, 
winners of the Olympic 1 500 metre races at Paris and 
Amsterdam respectively, employ an action widely 
different, particularly as regards the arms. The features 
of their style and its utility are fully discussed in the 
chapter on long-distance running ; and beyond suggest- 
ing that the development of a similar style might prove 
beneficial, especially to the short-striding and stocky 
type of miler, it is not thought advisable to recommend it 
for general cultivation by middle-distance runners. 

One secret of success in middle-distance running is 
perfection of stride. Good leg action is always beautiful 
and has the merit of being effective. It does not neces- 
sarily imply a long stride. The length of stride is 
dictated by comfort another test of economy in 
effort but it may be possible to increase the stride with 
practice. It has been explained already how a stride 
may be spoilt by bad body carriage and that high- 
stepping is wastage ; but a good knee-lift, followed by a 
thrust forward, is quite a different matter. It is to this 
that the expression a " good drive " is applied. Many 
people lift the leg well but fail to thrust it out. Concen- 
tration in practice and a determination with every step 

171 



ATHLETICS 

to put the 'foot down an extra couple of inches ahead, 
and an attempt to use ankle flick as the foot comes to the 
ground, will help. So will gymnastic exercises, e.g. 
high-kicking in true corps-de-ballet style, and knee-lifting 
followed by shooting out the foot. If, however, after 
proper trial, the lengthened stride produce discomfort, 
the athlete should revert to his old stride, for discomfort 
wastes energy and nothing is gained. 

Some athletes, and notably the late Hans Braun, are 
gifted with a remarkable spring off the ground. Possibly 
this may be cultivated by gymnastics and exercises, and 
if so it is an invaluable thing to acquire. But care must 
be taken not to bound too much, as time spent in the air 
is wasted. Similarly, it is a grave and by no means 
uncommon fault to drag the back leg. It looks pretty 
in photographs but is most ineffective in running. More 
foolish still is a high kick up behind. Often a sign that 
the athlete is not quite fit, it should be eradicated if it 
persists throughout his racing. Nurmi's style involves 
a minimum of back lift and continual creeping forward 
of the leg : this may not be an ideal because it implies 
little spring, but the theory is sound. 

^ The other great department of study in middle- 
distance races is technique. Speed at the start and finish, 
knowledge of pace and tactics, are very important 
articles of equipment, and they require somewhat 
detailed consideration. 

It is a truism which is frequently overlooked that the 
man with superior speed at the finish wins the race. 
And still more often is it forgotten that anyone aspiring 
to first-class standard has got to practise sprint starts 
(/.<?. from the crouch position) as assiduously as the true 
sprinter, especially in quarters and halves. If, as is 
usual, save in very up-to-date stadia, the first corner is 
close to the start, the sole hope of keeping or gaining the 
inside berth lies in speed off the mark. Therefore the 
middle-distance runner is well advised to practise starting 
and sprinting with the 100 yards men. Many people 

172 



MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

are fearful of this initial rapid start ; but in fact it is not 
exhausting if not sustained too long, i.e. for only 50 
yards or so, according to the situation, for it is the proper 
outlet for that excitement which is bubbling over at the 
start of a race. Moreover, a quick start allows one to 
drop down easily into that long, swinging gait which is 
wanted in the middle of the race. 

As for the finish, this is a matter of improving one's 
sprinting power. No matter how lethargic one may be 
by nature, it is quite possible to become a passable 
sprinter by practice. Not only the length but also the 
rate of a finish can be increased by practising with a 
sprinting friend, especially an average 2 20 man. Quite 
often one will find, when fit, that towards the end of a 
run through over 200 yards or so one will be going up 
on him. It is also a useful exercise to put another fellow 
a few yards up and try to catch him, provided, of course, 
that he is just a shade slower than oneself. And always, 
when practising, attention ought to be paid to style 
keeping the head down at the finish, even when fatigued, 
and controlling the arms. 

There is one other sprinting trick to accomplish. 
When about to pass a man, never ask his permission 
first. Pass him with a rush, without warning, and try 
to establish a 4 or 5 yards lead before he can counter- 
challenge. Technically known as "jumping" an 
opponent, this is an invaluable asset if properly 
employed ; and no one who saw Bevil Rudd use it can 
forget the sudden eagle's swoop on to and in this case 
past his quarry and the almost inevitable failure of his 
opponent to recover morally or physically the ground 
thus lost. 

It is in middle-distance races that knowledge of pace 
and tactics is of almost paramount importance. Solon's 
counsel " Know thyself " can be taken to heart by every 
athlete ; and such knowledge comes with practice and 
experience. To know the pace at which the race is 
being run is invaluable ; ability to apply knowledge of 

173 



ATHLETICS 

oneself renders it possible to lay plans beforehand, even 
if they " gang agley " and need adjustment. 

How is knowledge of pace acquired ? In practice 
by running against a watch, and in races by noting rates 
of speed as announced by lap times. It is possible to 
achieve quite uncanny accuracy in judging the time for 
each lap in the half or one mile, or in guessing the speed 
qf a quarter. With experience indeed such knowledge 
becomes sec nd nature ; but it may be cultivated thus 
in practice. In training, a friend may hold a watch and 
time the laps. For the 880, for example, one may first 
of all attempt to run the first lap in a certain time, say 
57 seconds, and see how near to 57 one gets. These 
times should, of course, be varied for wider experience. 
Then one can run a first 440 of a half, and a bit over 
for luck, and guess the time taken, comparing the guess 
with the time actually recorded. Similar exercises may 
be carried out in the other distances, e.g. the first 300 
of a quarter (an excellent training spin, by the way) in 
about 33 seconds ; a 600 in i- 13 ; or the first half or 
two-thirds of a mile in, say, 2- 10 or 2- 55. The advantage 
of all this practice is heightened if it be remembered 
that it forms a sound part of one's other training as well. 

Not only does one thus gain knowledge of pace ; one 
discovers also the rate which suits one best. Armed 
with this information, and knowing his sprinting 
capacity, the athlete can plan his race beforehand and 
run to some extent independently of his rivals. If he 
knows much about his opponents, he will appreciate 
what time he must do in order to win, and should lay 
a plan of campaign a very fascinating and useful 
occupation. Or he will know, during the course of the 
race, whether the speed is suitable or not, and, if not, 
whether it is too fast or too slow. If too fast he will 
realise that he can safely let those setting the pace go 
away, because they will eventually crack and come back 
to him, provided, of course, that he maintains his own 
steady gait ; and if too slow, and he doubts the superi- 

174 



MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

ority of his sprint, he will perceive the need to go out 
and set the pace himself. And, obviously, knowledge of 
pace is essential in relay racing, where often enough 
one is running quite by oneself. 

As has appeared from the last remarks, tactics are 
closely bound up with knowledge of pace, in so far as 
the planning of races is concerned, and the methods of 
one's opponents affect those plans. The extent to which 
one can plan a race naturally depends upon how much 
is known about the other runners. They should always 
be studied, and in the absence of observation in heats 
or of first-hand information their record considered. 
E.g. if a runner hitherto a sprinter suddenly takes up 
quarter-miling, one can expect speed at the start, and 
if the race be slow, at the finish also. In the absence of 
any information the only safe plan is to make the race as 
fast as possible ; but this is rarely necessary on this 
ground alone. To suggest all the alternative situations 
for which plans might be prepared cannot be attempted 
here ; but such occasions as the opposition of a sprinter 
and half-miler in a quarter, or two milers, one of whom 
is the better finisher, afford obvious instances of the need 
for strategy. In the first instance, the sprinter would 
like the race to be run slowly in order to reserve his 
sprint, and the half-miler will naturally make the pace 
fast to kill off this spurt. In the second case, the slower 
finisher ought probably to make the third lap a hot one 
with a similar purpose. 

Moreover, when laying plans it is a good thing to 
have alternatives ready. The other fellow may be as 
cunning as oneself, and if he tries a move one must be 
prepared with an answer. Finally, it is worth remem- 
bering that once plans are laid, which should be a few 
days in advance if sufficient information is available, 
there should be no more worry or thought about them, 
and certainly no chopping and changing about. If 
training has been sound worry is needless, and it is always 
useless, 

'75 



ATHLETICS 

Before leaving the topic of tactics, it is proper to 
repeat four golden rules which always apply and are 
often broken. They are : (i) Run on the inside ; (ii) don't 
pass on a bend ; (iii) keep up with the leaders ; (iv) don't 
relax the effort when going for home. 

The reason for the first two rules is mathematical, 
simply that the outer of two concentric circles has the 
greater circumference. Yet how often do even seasoned 
performers run yards wide or pass on bends ! Is it not 
realised that in running only i yard wide round the 
bends of Stamford Bridge track one has to travel 6 J yards 
farther every lap ? Of course, in a 440 run in lanes 
these two rules do not apply, and most other rules of 
tactics are redundant. But as it is only on the Continent 
and in the Olympic Games that lanes are used, the import- 
ance of tactics in most of the 440*3 which will be run by 
readers of this book is evident, and particularly these 
two rules. As a slight exception to the first, there is 
this fact : that when the track near the pole is badly 
cut up it pays, particularly in halves and miles, to run 
2 or 3 feet wide on the firmer surface down the 
straights, and even, under exceptionally bad conditions, 
round the bends as well, provided no one is thus afforded 
an opportunity to cut through on the inside. 

Keeping up with the leaders is a very sound rule 
which should be relaxed on two occasions only. If it 
so happens that the pace is impossibly fast, one can 
afford to let the other fellow go, knowing that he will 
ome back. As already said, it is here that a knowledge 
of pace is valuable. Even in such a case it is essential to 
keep a shrewd eye on the leader ; he may prove to be 
a dark horse who will refuse to be caught and just 
stagger home, or even someone good enough to do the 
seemingly impossible, and after, say, a 52 first quarter, 
finish a half in 1-52. If in any doubt, it is wiser to run 
no risk but attempt to follow ; the odds are that one 
will be in no worse state than the others when the time 
comes to sprint home. The other occasion is when one 

176 



MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

has to act as leader oneself, and is, of course, no real 
exception at all. It requires courage and self-confidence 
and very sound judgment ; but if properly done it wins 
more races, especially quarters, than might be expected, 
considering the extra fatigue which usually accompanies 
pace-making. 

It may seem obvious to insist on maintaining the final 
effort until and beyond the tape ; but it is not super- 
fluous to reiterate the warning, for only a few years ago 
a British mile championship was lost through a leader's 
failure to observe the rule. It is extremely tempting 
when one has a lead in the straight and is feeling done to 
take a breather, but once the final effort is slackened 
nothing on earth will enable a fatigued man to get up 
on his toes and sprint again. It is of almost equal import- 
ance to run right through the tape. In a close finish 
the man coming up from behind may just shoot in ahead 
if the leader eases as he senses the tape. To run to a 
point several yards beyond the post means safety ; and, 
of course, to pull up with any jerk is very bad running 
aftd harmful to the muscles. 

There remain a few things to add before discussing 
each event in detail. In training of all kinds it is never 
wise to do too much. This point has been insisted upon 
earlier in this book, but it deserves repetition. The 
object of training is not to break records or to exhaust 
oneself, but to improve style and technique and to store 
up energy for the race. For this reason it is an excellent 
thing, once stamina is assured, to practise over distances 
shorter than the race. There is no question about being 
able to stay the course in races excitement and fitness 
will always carry one home. Therefore a quarter-miler 
will benefit if he goes 300 yards ; a half-miler, 440 or 
600 ; a miler, half or two-thirds of a mile. And one 
should avoid running oneself out in practice that is not 
the aim of training. If possible one should seek final 
polish and have " all-out " runs in actual races ; and if 
things can be so arranged, it is a sound plan to scheme 

M 177 



ATHLETICS 

a series of graded races which will gradually bring one 
on week by week to faster times. That this is feasible, 
at any rate for the ambitious athlete, is demonstrated by 
the season's programme. About the beginning of June 
occur the county championships, which, in the half-mile, 
for example, call for about 2-2 from the winner. A 
fortnight later the district championships demand about 
1*58 ; and then the open championships normally about 
1-55. This can be supplemented, of course, with handi- 
caps, open scratch races and relay races, which should be 
selected to fit in with the plan of ever-increasing speed 
over the distance chosen. 

The length of time required for special training, once 
the runner is fit, is, as a minimum, about two or three 
weeks, provided the system of graded races advocated 
above be practicable. Naturally, longer time is required 
to study technique. The frequency of training depends 
largely on the individual how much he does at a time, 
how much technique he has to acquire, and whether he 
plays other games which can supplement his training 
and, incidentally, help to keep him from staleness. But 
three times a week at the most should suffice ; and when 
racing begins and one is fit, only one run a week besides 
the Saturday race is necessary or, indeed, wise, else there 
is a risk of staleness. Slight undertraining is better than 
too much, which nauseates. 

Should it happen that the athlete is anxious to attempt 
two or more middle-distance events, the first advice is 
that of Punch " Don't." Undoubtedly the ideal is 
one man, one event ; and this is quite sufficient exercise 
if there are heats on the same day. The man who 
tackles frequent doubles is apt to " burn out " before 
his time. If, however, one is really keen to attempt two 
events, the only safe method is to make the first the main 
objective and let the second take care of itself. Other- 
wise one will probably fall between two stools. As for 
training, once fit one ought to train for the shorter 
distance, concentrating on speed every time. After all, 

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MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

stamina will carry one home in the longer event, but 
no amount of cultivated staying power will knock fifths 
off one's sprinting time. Incidentally, the 100 yards 
man who tries quarters will usually take the edge off 
his sprinting ; but the 220 man may more happily 
combine the quarter. Similarly, the 440 and 880, or 
the half and the one mile may go together ; but in every 
case the events must be kindred, and safety and comfort 
lie in one event at a time. 



Section 2. The Quarter-mile 

It has been suggested in the previous section that 
quarter-milers are of two types sprinters or middle- 
distance runners. Quite evidently the training required 
by each type will be different. The pure sprinter, when 
he tries running the 440, will probably regard it as a 
mighty long way ; and unless he is a phenomenal runner 
like Liddell, he will be obliged to employ methods 
hitherto alien to him. It will be suicidal to attempt to 
go at top speed the whole way, and he will have to learn 
to stride in the middle section of the race. Probably, 
too, he will find his stamina requires strengthening, even 
though he be an excellent 220 runner. His special 
training, therefore, should be directed towards increasing 
stamina so that the distance no longer seems frightfully 
far, and to running at three-quarter speed for the first 
300 yards or so and then being able to call up his sprint. 

For this type of runner nothing is more valuable than 
running an occasional 600 yards early in the season. 
It will inevitably take the edge off his sprinting, but, as 
was pointed out in the last section, every 100 yards 
runner must expect this if he tackles the 440 ; and most 
of its keenness will be restored by the later training over 
short distances. Fatiguing at first, the result of these 
runs will be to strengthen the muscles of the thigh and 
improve the wind for the breathing processes in 
middle-distance races are not quite the same as in 

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ATHLETICS 

sprinting, being much deeper and less jerky and gasp- 
ing and, consequently, make the quarter-mile distance 
seem relatively short and easy to negotiate. 

To get the proper stride during the middle portion of 
the race the best distance to run is 300 yards, usually 
against the watch to ensure that no loitering occurs. 
It is always helpful to have a companion ; but this 
distance in particular can be run alone with benefit, just 
because one is often obliged when racing to set one's 
owh pace, either because tactics demand it or because 
one is running in lanes. The way to run such a 300 is 
exactly as if the intention were to go the full 440 ; there- 
fore the start must be as fast and the action from the 
crouch position the same as in a. 100 yards. In a 49- 
second quarter the first 100 yards should be covered in 
IO|, followed by a long stride through, with a minimum 
of arm action (naturally more, however, than in a half- 
mile) ; the second 100 yards should take n, and the 
third, i if; total 33^. These times to be increased 
proportionately, of course, according to the standard 
aimed at. 

The other type of quarter-miler the half-mile type 
will lack not stamina but speed. His special training 
must be directed towards remedying this. Runs over 
300 yards such as outlined above will be of exceeding 
utility to him, although at first they will seem impossibly 
fast. He will probably have to begin lower in the scale 
with, say, 35 seconds for the 300, and try to work up 
to the 33!, Another point for him to study will be 
starting (of value also in his half-miles) and sprinting. 
As already suggested, he should train partly with 
sprinter friends, and when possible run in handicaps or 
even scratch events at any sprint distance. He may also 
find finishing a weakness he will not suffer from 
fatigue as may the pure sprinter, but will just lack the 
extra bit of speed. 

Neither type of runner need run through the full 
distance very often in training if he is able to obtain 

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MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

plenty of racing experience, which, as already suggested, 
is a considerably more valuable method of training. If 
this should be lacking, the sprinter will have the greater 
need to practise over the full course ; but once a week 
should suffice. Either runner will find it helpful to have 
a friend to take him along over the last 150 yards, 
especially if that friend knows better than to race ahead. 

The tactics governing middle-distance races have 
already been discussed, but a few particular points 
which arise in 440*5 may still be mentioned. When the 
race is run in lanes (e.g. the Olympic Games and inter- 
national matches abroad) each competitor runs exactly 
the same distance and has to run his own race without, 
as a rule, having much idea of the position of his rivals 
until entering the straight, for the start is in echelon. 
An acute sense of pace and a careful study of the ability 
of his opponents are called for, but of strategy very little. 
In heats, for example, if no adversary can beat, say, 51, 
one can run fast enough to finish just within that time 
and not bother about the eccentricities of anyone who 
goes off unduly fast. In the final, of course, one is out 
just to do his best, and unless competing in another 
event there is no necessity to save energy. 

The growing tendency is to run all quarter-mile 
races in lanes ; and in view of the abuses possible when 
all start from the same mark over the same course, and 
of the extraordinary advantages which the luck of the 
draw for station may confer in a field of no more than 
four runners, the result is certainly more equitable 
although the interest is reduced. When the race is not 
run in lanes, as is usually the case in England owing to 
the difficulty of preparing lanes on the majority of tracks, 
and in America, where there is generally an initial 220 
straightaway and only one bend, the importance of 
tactics is supreme, probably even more than in the half- 
mile, where there does exist some opportunity to recover 
from an error of judgment. It is for this reason that one 
is tempted to regret the necessity, at all events when the 

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ATHLETICS 

first corner lies within 50 yards of the start, of using 
lanes in order to ensure a fairer race. The event tends 
to become mechanical and the human interest is greatly 
reduced ; indeed the fundamental element of racing, 
whereby men run together from a mark, is eliminated. 
It seems a pity that the race cannot always be run as in 
America, with the long initial straight, which affords 
ample occasion for each man to get the pole before the 
corner, without the serious likelihood of illegal tactics 
being employed ; but the quarter-miler of the future will 
apparently need to practise more and more running his 
race in lanes. 

However, the race without lanes being de rigueur in 
England it is necessary as well as interesting to consider 
the tactics demanded in its performance. 

For the simple reason that running on the outside 
round a bend adds yards to the total distance covered 
it is wise to run on the inside if possible. If one has the 
luck to draw inside station nothing should be allowed 
to deprive one of it before the first corner ; and if one 
has practised starting and sprinting, no one save an 
exceptional sprinter ought to succeed in covering 2 
yards more than oneself in the first forty or fifty. These 
2 yards approximately represent the clear lead which 
one runner must have before crossing in front of another. 
Naturally enough, those who draw less favourable 
stations will make efforts, if they think themselves fast 
enough, to obtain the inside berth at the bend, and they 
must be careful to avoid jostling or obstructing others. 
Successful efforts will often be impossible, however, if 
one is drawn outside, e.g. No. 4 ; and the alternatives 
are either to run wide round the first bend and thereby 
go perhaps 3 or 4 yards farther, or to go slow at 
the start and drop in behind, which also probably costs 
four yards. Which is the lesser evil depends on the 
opposition. If one is certain that everyone will go 
hammer and tongs round the first corner and down the 
back straight, it is wiser to drop behind and reserve one's 

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MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

fire for the finish. If, on the contrary, there is likely 
to be a slowing up round the corner, there is every chance 
that running wide but slightly faster will put one level 
with the leaders at the entry to the back straight, when 
a sudden " jump " should land one in front. 
* Assuming, however, that the inside and leading berth 
at the bend has been secured, what is to be done ? 
Leadership in quarter-miles pays nine times out of ten, 
for it imports control of the race, especially if the curves 
are long ; therefore it is worth retaining. As leader, 
if one is a half-mile type of quarter-miler running 
against sprinters, he should get on with it, and try, by 
keeping the pace warm, to kill off his opponents' 
finishing spurt. On the contrary, a sprinter, if leading, 
wants to keep the tempo slow : let him play his men 
round the corners, even to inducing them to try to pass, 
then in the back straight just keep them from passing, 
which his superior speed should render simple, and 
round the last bend play them again. The finish should 
be easy, especially if the final sprint be begun about 5 
yards before the end of the curve, so that the man behind 
does not have a chance to draw level before the 
commencement of the straight. 

How may the half-miling type circumvent such 
tactics ? The only way, if he cannot get by down the 
back straight, is to push the sprinter along as hard as 
possible all the way, and hope that thereby he may be 
made to crack. A pure sprinter, especially if not 
perfectly trained, often will. 

It is always sound tactics to have the lead at the last 
bend, unless the finishing straight is exceptionally long. 
No one can pass before the straight without running 
wide, when he can be played ; and it is possible, if one 
is careful, to take a slight breather before the final spurt, 
which should begin with a "jump," as previously 
described, about 5 or 7 yards before the straight is 
entered. The temptation to swing wide when entering 
the straight must be guarded against. Hug the pole, 

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ATHLETICS 

for it is the shortest route to the tape, as another man 
may prove to one's cost by coming up on the inside if 
one runs at a tangent. And never relax the final effort 
until beyond the judges' stand. 

The remarks just written about the 440 apply in large 
measure to the 600. Many people indeed would attempt 
to run the 600 as an abbreviated half-mile, probably 
because most races at the distance are tackled by half- 
milers, and also because, although it is occasionally 
possible to run the quarter as a sprint, no human being 
could so run this distance. Nevertheless, the sounder 
theory is to run it as an elongated quarter, with the fast 
start in order to get the inside berth, and then the raking 
quarter-mile stride until the last 150 yards or so, when 
the final effort should be made. Just as in quarter- 
miling, the faster runner can try to play his man on the 
corners and the slower can try to hurry along a man 
who is slowing up the pace. The most subtle danger 
against which to guard is that of running the first 440 
yards too fast, if one is a quarter-miler, or too slowly, 
if a half-miler. To do i-io the first 440 should take, 
approximately, 50^ seconds ; I- 12, 52 ; i- 15, 54 ; for 
the last 1 60 yards will invariably take about 20 
seconds. 

Section 3. The Half-mile 

The half-mile shares with the quarter-mile the 
distinction of being the most exhausting race to run, 
not because longer races are not exhausting, but on 
account of its affording no real relief from top-speed 
running at any stage, at all events in first-class races. 
There is no lull in the race similar to that which occurs 
in the third lap of almost every mile. Moreover, it is 
probably true to say that the half-mile is the most taxing 
of all, because it consists in two consecutive fast quarters. 
Whether this be quite true or not, certain it is that the 
training needs to be carefully planned and carried out, 

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MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

and style and technique finely developed, in order to 
ensure success. 

A good style, as already described, is of the greatest 
value. Perfect technique is almost a sine qua non. With- 
out a thoroughly sound knowledge of pace success is 
unlikely ; and to the possession of such knowledge must 
be added a flair for tactics based on common sense, 
experience, and appreciation of one's opponents' worth. 

For the methods of acquiring and applying pace 
knowledge the reader is referred back to the previous 
section in this chapter dealing with general principles. 
It is essential in order to plan a race to know one's 
maximum speed, and to know what speed will be most 
advantageous in the particular event. Further, it is 
necessary to be able to judge quickly during the progress 
of the race whether the pace set is satisfactory or 
whether it is too fast or too slow. 

Pace in half-miling is measured by the time taken for 
each lap, which is usually a quarter-mile, and it is 
interesting to analyse the variations in times in different 
races. The first curious fact which emerges is that among 
good performers the time taken over the second 440 
yards is almost constant, whatever the time over the 
first 440 may have been. Thus the average time for the 
second 440 in a i 5 7 half or a 2 minutes half is 60 seconds, 
and only in the case of exceptional runners capable of 
remarkable times is it likely that whether the first 440 
take 57 or 62 seconds the second will differ appreciably 
from a constant 60 seconds. It is therefore evident 
that most people gain nothing whatever from a slowly 
run first quarter. 

The superlative runner can, however, play havoc with 
these figures. Given a very slow first quarter (say 65) 
he may reel off 57 or even 55 for the second, if pressed 
(e.g. A.A.A. Championships, 1928, when a 60$. first 
quarter meant that the winner did about 55 - for the 
second). And if the first 440 take 56 or 57 he may still 
reel off 57, but probably not 55. Indeed, 57, instead 

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ATHLETICS 

of the lesser luminary's 60, is approximately his constant 
for the second quarter, for even after a 55 first quarter 
he can produce this time. (In Dr. Peltzer's record half- 
mile the first 440 took 54^, he lying second, and the 
second 440, 57.) So in this class also, no advantage 
accrues if the pace is too slow. 

On the other hand, there does arrive a stage at which 
the pace may be too hot. It becomes economically un- 
sound. The good athlete instanced above would exceed 
his 60 seconds pretty considerably if he were asked to 
turn out 55 for the first quarter ; and the exceptional 
athlete's 57 constant would increase perhaps to 59 or 

60 seconds if the first 440 were reduced to 52 (cf. e.g. 
Meredith's old Olympic record of 1*51^ made after 
a 52^ first 400 metres). 

From these figures it can, therefore, be deduced that 
the time for the first quarter is all-important, for the 
second is a constant varying only with the class of the 
performer. Further, the faster the time for the first 
quarter the better, until the economic limit is reached, 
after which the time for the second quarter begins to 
soar. And the time for the first quarter should be any- 
thing up to three seconds faster than that for the second. 
Finally, despite the economic weakness of a race in 
which the first quarter is run too quickly, it may (a) not 
result in a total time slower than in a race wherein it 
was too slow (e.g. 53+60 = 1-53; 55+56-3 = 1-51^ ; 

61 + 55^=1-565), or () prove very sound tactics if it 
be more injurious to one's opponents than to oneself. 

It is extremely doubtful whether the attempt to run 
two consecutive quarters in the same time can ever be 
more successful than the hitherto satisfactory method of 
making the first some two or three seconds faster than 
the second. In the writers' opinion, the pace must come 
in the first half of the race while the runner is fresh : 
it is expecting the impossible to ask him to recapture the 
lost seconds in lap two, when he is fatigued. In other 
words, 54+56 is more certain than 55+55, which 

186 



MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

would probably turn out to be, at the best, 55+56, and 
never 56+55. 

Knowing, therefore, that his time depends upon his 
speed over the first quarter, and knowing the fastest rate 
at which he can go and still achieve his constant time for 
the second quarter, the half-miler has to decide what 
speed will best suit him in the actual race. (Of course, 
in a relay he would go all-out at his best rate for the first 
440, or a shade faster if consolidating a lead.) Obviously, 
if his chief rival can outsprint him, as, for example, the 
quarter-mile type would against the half-cum-mile type, 
the slower finisher cannot afford to dally. He must 
secure the fastest possible pace in the hope of quenching 
that sprint, and if no one else will do it, he must set the 
pace himself. And this in spite of the danger of leading 
in a half-mile. He may even find it advisable to run the 
first quarter a trifle too fast, if he can induce his rival to 
hang on, and if he feels confident that it will injure that 
rival more than himself. The fast finisher can, of course, 
afford to laugh at a slow first lap ; indeed he usually 
prefers it. But even he must look out lest the very slow- 
ness of it tire him, as it will do if he is obliged to clip 
his stride. 

The danger of leading has been mentioned. The 
danger actually is this, that to lead is for some reason, 
largely mental, more fatiguing than to follow, quite apart, 
of course, from such an obvious disadvantage as facing the 
wind. Undoubtedly the second, or, if unattainable, the 
third position, is the best in half and one miling, unless 
perchance the pace set is too hot to last and one can 
safely stay behind. In this position one can virtually 
control the race, which is eminently proper as one is pre- 
sumably running to win it. If the pace is too slow 
and it is curious to observe how it tends to flag after 
about 350 yards one can often whip it up again by 
moving up to the leader's shoulder. One has his finger 
on the movements of three if not four runners, for often 
there is someone at one's elbow. When the time comes 



ATHLETICS 

to go for home one can strike unhampered by having to 
pass several others, only one man being ahead, and he 
usually tired and not fit to resist a good challenge. The 
only thing for which to look out carefully is lest one 
should get boxed in a fate far less likely when running 
second than third or later. Should this fate be imminent, 
get out of the danger zone at once, even by taking the lead, 
If it occurs early in the race one can always slow down 
again until one, and only one, other man has got jumpy 
and taken the lead again. And observe that if one trails 
in the last position, one may be 8 or 10 yards behind 
the leader, a tremendous lot of ground to regain in the 
last 200. 

The tendency to slacken the pace towards the end of 
the first quarter has been described. It is here that the 
class man can stand out. If he cannot make the leader 
maintain the gait it will usually repay him if he goes 
out himself. Otherwise he will have his stride clipped, 
which is tiring and wasteful. Most men are feeling the 
effects of the long stride at this stage, and knowing that 
the relief which a change of action will bring when they 
sprint is still a couple of hundred yards ahead, they 
almost unconsciously slacken. The good man can run 
them to something approaching a standstill here and 
save seconds of time. Indeed, if he can stride from the 
550 yards mark at pure quarter-mile speed and save his 
final effort for the last 100 yards, he will tax the ability 
of any opponent to the limit and have a well-nigh 
irresistible finish. This method is certainly to be 
recommended after a fast-run first quarter. 

Probably the most perplexing decision called for in 
half-miling is at what moment to sprint. Practice will 
have informed the runner how far he can sprint and, 
incidentally, good training will enable him to increase 
the distance but three considerations may be borne in 
mind. First, one can always manage an extra 40 or 
50 yards sprint in a race on stamina and excitement 
alone. Secondly, the change of action from the tiring 

188 



MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

stride to the more choppy sprint style is a great mental 
and physical relief. Thirdly, it may pay to make the 
effort perhaps 20 yards earlier if it prove unexpected. 
That invaluable 4 or 5 yards lead is then more likely 
to be gained ; and it is possible that either one's rivals will 
argue that as the effort is being made unusually soon 
they can wait, because the inspiration surely cannot last, 
or else they will be too fearful of their own ability to 
sprint from such a point and will not endeavour to 
follow. 

Needless to say, perhaps, the last two arguments are 
wrong ; and with regard to the lead, any wise runner 
will counter-challenge immediately and try to prevent 
the gain of those precious yards. It is a pretty safe rule 
not to allow anyone to pass in the back straight (where 
most people try, by the way) and to fight for the lead 
round the last bend (vide remarks on quarter-miling), 
which is worth about 2 yards in the finishing straight ; 
and it is a tremendous risk to allow someone to go by, 
say, 300 yards from home and depend upon a pious but 
by no means justifiable hope that fate will check his 
headlong career long before the post. Let him be 
accompanied if his taking the lead cannot be- prevented, 
for although the distance be greater than one ever dared 
hope to be strong enough to sprint, depend upon it, the 
other fellow will grow just as tired, and possibly more 
tired, before the finish. 

Section 4. The 1500 Metres and the Mile 

These two events can be considered together, for their 
length differs by only 120 yards, a distance appreciable 
to the tired athlete but not calling for any real differ- 
entiation in training or tactics. The only distinction 
is that the 1 500 metres slightly favours the half-miler ; 
the mile, the pure stayer who may combine this race with 
longer distances. 

Treated as a distinct event, trained for apart from the 

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ATHLETICS 

half-mile, with which it is often combined, the chief 
requisites for success in the mile are stamina, speed and 
knowledge of pace. Until recently, even in first-class 
company, speed was by no means essential ; but with 
the development of half-miling has come a quickening 
of the mile, and it is no longer so possible for the plug- 
ging type of miler to meet with success against good per- 
formers who possess strong finishes. It is, of course, true 
that a strong finish may be mitigated by a cracking pace 
in the third lap, so that everyone enters on the last in a 
state of fatigue ; and such are the obvious tactics to be 
adopted by a miler not gifted with speed over the last 
quarter. Provided, however, that the half-mile type of 
miler (who is the predominantly successful type in 
modern first-class competition) has a reasonable amount 
of stamina, he will be able to cope with such a situation, 
and, furthermore, by running the first half-mile fast 
(i.e. about 2-6 or 2-8) he will probably turn the tables 
on his slower rival and either leave or crack him. 

The mile cannot be regarded as a stereotyped race 
with a regular pace throughout. That method may sound 
admirable in theory, but it fails in practice. Modern 
conditions in, say, a 4* 20 mile usually call for a 60 first 
quarter, 2-7 half and 3-17 three-quarters ; and even in 
those cases where attempts have been made to run four 
more or less equally rapid quarters, the result has been 
to establish that the first is always the fastest, and the 
last the next rapid, the second and third being several 
seconds slower. 

It is quite possible that the somewhat remarkably fast 
first quarter just quoted is not quite sound economically ; 
nevertheless it does serve to get the runner well into his 
stride, gets him clear of the field if, as often happens 
in this event, the entry is large, and, of course, properly 
uses up his pent-up nervous excitement, besides being 
excellent tactics against timid or inexperienced rivals. 
The disadvantage is that the third lap has usually to be 
taken rather slowly ; and a very confident runner who 

190 



MIDDLE-DISTANCE RUNNING 

knew his pace to a second might, if the field were not so 
large as to hamper him, be able to run 63, 66, 67, and 
be up with the leaders before the last quarter. But he 
would, of course, run the risk attendant upon not keeping 
up with the leaders, namely that they might prove to 
be dark horses who refused to be pegged back. 

In the early stages of training for the mile, it is upon 
stamina that one should concentrate. This can be 
gained by running at medium pace over distances 
exceeding a mile, and by sharp walks of 6 or 8 miles 
on the days when the track is not visited. The stiffness 
or shin soreness which may accompany fast walking can 
be avoided if the walk be interspersed with a short trot 
on the toes every couple of miles. Walking then 
becomes a very valuable training exercise. 

Once stamina is assured, the miler wants to acquire 
speed. Initial speed from the mark is not so important 
as in the other middle-distance events, although a good 
position on the inside early in the race should always be 
obtained. A half-miler will usually possess sufficient 
speed already, or will be training for the half and so 
acquire it ; but the slower type of runner, especially if 
he be a cross-country or long-distance man, will need 
to practise both sprinting and sustained last efforts. 
Sprinting practice and entry in a few sprint handicaps 
will assist the one ; running occasional quarters and 
halves, the other. The later stages of training should be 
devoted to speed work, and to half and three-quarter 
miles at top speed. Alternately, these halves and three- 
quarters should be run with the object of improving pace 
knowledge then the plan should be to cover the 880 
in, say, 2-8 (as in a proper mile race) and the three- 
quarter mile in 3* 1 6, capping either with a brief spurt. 

Most mile races reveal a slowness in the third lap, 
caused partly by fatigue, partly by preparation for a 
spurt, and partly by the fact that everyone is watching 
his rivals. The third lap is, in fact, the critical stage of 
the race, and the opportunity for the strategist to score. 

191 



ATHLETICS 

The fast finisher can afford and usually desires a 
rallentando here ; the plugger, or inferior sprinter, if 
confident that he can stay the course, must make an 
attempt either to draw away from the others and so 
establish a winning lead, or make the pace so hot that 
in following him the others are exhausted and 
consequently lose the power to outsprint him. 

If there is no information available about one's 
opponents, the safe plan is to study them as much as 
possible during the race, particularly the third lap, when 
signs of fatigue and anxiety become evident. Careful 
observation, which becomes acute with experience, will 
tell one the right moment to strike. If instead of trying 
to draw away in the third lap it seems wiser to postpone 
spurting until the last, the best place is about 250 yards 
from the tape, when tactics similar to those prescribed 
for the half-mile should be employed. " Jump " the 
opposition ; get or keep the lead at the last corner ; 
never relax. And always try to maintain form. 



192 



CHAPTER VIII 

DISTANCE RACES 

Section I. Long-distance Running 

THE events classified under the heading Long- 
distance Running may be said to embrace any 
distance over i mile. It has already been 
suggested that the mile race should fall properly within 
the middle-distance category ; and although many great 
runners in the past have succeeded in combining it with 
the 4 and even the lo-mile races, it is unquestionable 
that the true long-distance runner, unless he possess the 
superlative capacity of a Nurmi, is not a first-class miler. 
Giants such as W. G. George and W. Snook in the 
'eighties, and A. Shrubb in the early years of this 
century, succeeded in annexing the A.A.A. One Mile 
Championship in addition to the 4 and 10 miles, and 
George even added the half-mile to his amazing list of 
triumphs. But it is submitted that these men are, like 
Nurmi, exceptions, and a careful consideration of the 
records and of individuals indicates that the modern 
tendency is for the great miler to be of the half-mile 
type, whereas the long-distance runner is of that other 
type which emphasises style and stamina rather than 
style and speed. 

The point may be further stressed by observation of 
the temperament and physique of the long-distance 
runner. It is generally agreed that athletes of volatile 
disposition are more prone to choose the sprint events ; 
that the sprinter and the middle-distance runner rely 
to a great extent upon nervous energy ; and that the 
quick-thinking man finds the greatest scope for his talent 
N 193 



ATHLETICS 

in middle-distance events. The more equable, less 
vivacious and imaginative, but possibly more dogged 
athlete finds the slower pace and relative monotony of 
long-distance races better suited to his taste. This is 
casting no reflection upon any type of runner : chacun 
a son gout et a son humeur. Physiologically also one finds 
ground for concluding that this classification is sound. 
If one possessed accurate skeletal measurements of the 
several types of runners it would almost certainly be 
demonstrable that the average physical dimensions of the 
4 and lo-miler are considerably less than those of the 
average miler, which approximate closely to those of the 
half-miler. With rare exceptions the crack performers of 
yesterday and to-day over the longer distances have been 
men of small stature, short-striding, wiry and very 
determined. It is obvious that such physical attributes 
would militate in all save the rarest of cases against 
first-class performances in the mile, wherein the advan- 
tage of a long stride and the necessity for speed have 
been explained. On the other hand, it is almost inevit- 
able that the tall, long-striding miler would find himself 
early exhausted in a longer race through excessive 
weight and the strain of a great and probably bounding 
stride. One may group as standard long-distance events 
races from 2 miles up to 10, pointing out that the best 
performers can compete with success in any of them ; 
and one may add that the further category, which 
includes the Marathon and even greater distances, is 
within the compass, subject to proper training, of almost 
any good ic-miler. 

The 2 -mile race is a regular event in the American 
Inter-Collegiate and the indoor championships ; but in 
Great Britain the 3-mile race is more popular, being the 
standard distance at the Universities and featuring in 
many club programmes. This event corresponds closely 
with the 5000 metres (3 miles 1 8 8 yards), which is the 
customary event upon the Continent and in the Olympic 
Games ; and it is largely sentiment which retains the 

194 



LONG-DISTANCE RUNNING 

4-mile event in the A.A.A. championship programme, 
where it has featured for sixty years. In 1925 the 
Americans, seeking to bring their championships into 
closer relation with those of the Olympic Games, 
substituted for their long-standing 5-mile event a 6-mile 
race, or 376 yards less than the 10,000 metres, which 
is the Olympic and Continental standard distance- 
In both Britain and America there is a lo-mile cham- 
pionship, and since 1925 the A.A.U. have held a 
15-mile event as well. In both countries there are 
several annual Marathon races. 

Contests over exceptional distances, such as 50 or 
100 miles, time races of one or more hours' duration, 
and the old " go-as-you-please " for several days, have 
largely died out. In 1928 the remarkable South African 
runner, Arthur Newton, attempted to break a record in 
running from Bath to London, a distance of over 100 
miles ; and the novelty of such an event aroused much 
enthusiasm. With all respect, however, to a great 
nat-ural runner, it must be said that the attempt was 
chiefly of interest as demonstrating the importance of 
running long-distance races to schedule a matter to be 
discussed later and, as in the case of cross-Channel 
swimming, it is permissible to doubt the utility of such 
endurance tests and certainly to deprecate their regular 
practice. 

With long-distance running one leaves the sphere 
where speed and stride are vital and arrives at a point 
where style and judgment are of paramount importance. 
It has been laid down that good style is of primary 
significance in middle-distance running ; and for an 
exactly s ; milar reason, namely economy of effort or 
conservation of energy, is it essential to success over 
longer distances. There exists this distinction, however, 
that whereas a middle-distance runner may achieve 
considerable success in spite of his style, no long- 
distance performer can hope to do so. The long- 
distance runner is confronted with an event involving a 

1 95 



ATHLETICS 

long sustained effort ; any squandering of energy must 
prove fatal. What perfection of style must he seek in 
order to maintain his necessarily unflagging pace ? 

It may be broadly stated that two different styles are 
in favour at the present time. Each aims at the 
elimination of wasteful movements ; each affords a good 
body carriage, a reasonably long stride, an easy arm 
action and an appearance of simplicity. The one is 
practised by Anglo-Saxons, the other by Finns. 

The Anglo-Saxon method follows closely the lines 
laid down in the chapter devoted to middle-distance 
running, where the style and action during the central 
section of a race are described. The distance runner 
should not be anxious to achieve a long or bounding 
stride because of the fatigue involved, although W. G. 
George, by training himself to withstand such fatigue, 
was able to employ a raking stride with devastating 
effect. An easy arm action and body carriage similar to 
those of the miler may certainly be cultivated. The 
body will naturally be more upright on account of the 
slower pace and shorter stride, until in the case of the 
lo-miler the runner is almost vertical ; and the angle 
of the head will correspond with that of the body. The 
arms should be carried low, swinging if anything slightly 
across the body, almost in the style of the normal walking 
action ; but many runners carry their arms higher than 
this in approximation, in fact, to the Finnish style. 
It is probably a matter of taste the point to observe 
being not to use the arms for purposes of propulsion 
until sprinting. The whole movement should be smooth 
and comfortable; anything jerky should at once be 
eliminated, whether in the stride, arm action, or even 
head wobble. Truly rhythmic movement will carry a 
runner along even after physical exhaustion has set in ; 
it has the dual merit of being graceful and efficient. 

Nurmi has given it as his opinion that the English 
middle -distance style is ideal for its purpose. Quite 
evidently he does not approve of it for long distances ; 

196 



LONG-DISTANCE RUNNING 

and his own successes and those of so many of his 
countrymen who have obviously modelled their style 
on his 'lead one to inquire whether the secret of those 
successes does not lie in his peculiar style. 

With Nurmi, and, indeed, all the Finns except 
Ritola, the body is carried almost vertical in every race 
from a mile upwards. The leg action is remarkable for 
the absence of back-lift always a wasteful though 
elegant movement a considerable forward thrust, and 
a good but not extravagant knee-lift. The arms appear 
even more curious. Held almost horizontal, with the 
hands close up against the chest, elbows pointing out- 
wards and shoulders braced back, they move no more 
than is required to balance the body until the moment 
arrives for an accelerated effort. It is at this stage that 
the English style seems to possess superiority. No man 
holding his arms as do the Finns can sprint : the best 
he can do is to quicken his ordinary stride. This is, in 
fact, what Nurmi does. Instead of chopping down his 
stride and employing something akin to a sprinter's 
action as exponents of the English style given above 
are recommended to do he simply accelerates with the 
same action. Quite obviously this would not be 
effective against anyone possessing a really good finish : 
it explains Dr. Peltzer's victory in 1926, when he beat 
Nurmi in the last 100 yards and set up the present 
world's record for 1500 metres. It also accounts for 
the inability of Nurmi or any other Finn at the moment 
to run a first-class half-mile ; but it does seem to enable 
him to run any exponent of the English style, excluding 
Ritola, off his legs during the course of a long-distance 
race, and render any particularly fast finish unnecessary. 

The explanation may lie in the extreme freedom of 
movement ; in the " floating " sensation imparted to 
the runner ; above all, in the expansion of the chest and 
lungs and consequent opportunity for deep breathing. 
In this connection the extraordinary costal development 
of the Finns is to be observed. 

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ATHLETICS 

Were it not for the style adopted by two other very 
fine distance runners one would be tempted to recom- 
mend the Finnish method to aspirants to success in long- 
distance races. One must point out, however, that 
Willie Ritola, a Finn who has practised most of his 
running in America, employs the longer stride and low 
swinging arm action characterised as Anglo-Saxon ; 
and had it not been for Nurmi, who usually just beats 
him, Ritola would have been hailed as the greatest 
distance runner of all time. Edwin Wide, of Sweden, 
beat Nurmi over 1500 metres when Peltzer set up the 
record, and also holds the world's record for 2 miles, 
again beating Nurmi, and he employs the same style as 
Ritola. Indeed, one may say that his style appears to 
be flawless. 

It is apparent, therefore, that the Finns' style is not 
the sole explanation of their present superiority ; its 
efficiency is, however, so great that its cultivation might 
prove a very profitable experiment on the part of the 
young distance runner. 

In claiming fundamental importance for good style 
it has been assumed that the athlete possesses stamina. 
Obviously this is essential to success. Its development 
calls for very definite systems of training, worked out 
according to the vocation, physique and temperament 
of the individual ; and it is proper to write a few words 
on this point. 

A great proportion of distance runners perform, often 
with brilliant results, across country during the winter ; 
and there can be no doubt that this is the finest prepara- 
tion obtainable. It is, perhaps, debatable whether the 
crack track runner should indulge in a severe cross- 
country season, partly because it involves almost continu- 
ous running throughout the year, at least for the 4-miler 
(the A. A. A. Ten Miles Championship is usually held early 
in the summer), and partly because of the strenuous 
nature of cross-country championships ; and the casting 
vote must be given by the athlete himself (or his trainer) 

198 



LONG-DISTANCE RUNNING 

after careful study of his physique. Certainly for the 
2, 3 and 4-mile races a cross-country season of three 
months should be adequate to lay a good foundation for 
the track work, particularly if the runs are varied with 
long walks. 

The value of walking at this and subsequent stages of 
training cannot be over-estimated. It is a great aid to 
the development of stamina, and provided the rate be 
not excessive 4 to 5 miles per hour is a healthy 
speed no shin or foot soreness or other ailment should 
ensue. A warm bath will remove any tendency to 
stiffness ; but an even more efficacious remedy is the 
interspersion of short runs every couple of miles. They 
keep the muscles supple and afford variety to the work. 
Turf is preferable to the road ; and golf is a good game 
if played quickly, for it helps to relieve the monotony 
which induces staleness. 

The work on the track should occupy about a couple 
of months ; but here again the individual must be the 
arbiter. The athlete who has lain fallow during the 
winter will obviously require longer ; the cross-country 
runner will probably be ready to race within a month. 
The track work should not be overdone : its relative 
monotony should be broken by walks or runs on the 
road. Other games, such as fives, tennis or squash, may 
also be indulged in with advantage. Once the muscles 
and wind are in good condition concentration should be 
bent on speed. There is an old adage, " It's not the 
distance but the pace that kills/' and the 3 or 4-miler 
should train over i J, 2 or i\ miles, mixing his work by 
doing fast miles or even half-miles on other days. 
These shorter runs should be concluded with a burst 
of 50 yards or more, the distance being increased each 
time. As for the ib-miler, he will require an occasional 
longer run of 6 or 7 miles, with perhaps one full course 
trial ; but in every case exhaustion should be avoided. 
It is folly to go frequently over the full course except 
in competition, and the aim should be to participate in 

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ATHLETICS 

races of gradually increasing severity, in one of which 
will be experienced that gruelling and exhaustion which 
is admittedly the inevitable preliminary to absolute 
fitness. 

In developing the stride, over-striding must be 
avoided at all costs. It is fatal on account of the fatigue 
it induces. The runner should endeavour to cultivate 
his normal stride, eliminating back-lift or drag as much 
as possible and trying to obtain a good thrust forward. 

As the result of some extremely interesting scientific 
researches into the consumption of oxygen during 
violent exercise, tests being performed upon first-class 
athletes during training, Professor A. V. Hill has come 
to the definite conclusion that in running any distance 
an approximately even pace throughout induces the 
most economical result. Although this scientific con- 
clusion is sound theoretically, the generality of experience 
is opposed to its practicality in middle-distance races, 
in which tactics and temperament play so prominent a 
part. It is only when one comes to the long distances 
that the theory fits in with the practice ; and it is there 
that one is glad to have the experience of the athlete 
confirmed by the experiment of the physiologist. 

It is, indeed, of the utmost importance to run long 
distance races to schedule, with the minimum of variation 
in pace. The longer the race the more important does 
steady running become ; but even in a 3 -mile race 
running to schedule should be practised until it becomes 
second nature. 

Not only is schedule running important, but the 
athlete also wants to know the pace at which he is running 
and whether it is over or under the schedule rate. The 
method of learning to judge pace is similar to that 
advocated for the half-miler : to practise running lap 
after lap at a consistent rate and become acquainted with 
one's own maximum pace. To give an example, suppose 
A wants to run 3 miles in 14*30 very good time, but 
some 19 seconds outside Nurmi's world's record. On 

200 



LONG-DISTANCE RUNNING 

a track with four laps to the mile the average speed for 
each lap must be i 1 2^ ; and A should learn this pace 
and know when he is doing it. He will thus appreciate 
his own maximum pace, and be able to run his own race, 
trailing or leading his rivals according to the exigencies 
of the competition ; and he will also acquire that 
valuable asset, self-confidence. 

In practice, of course, a few variations will inevitably 
occur ; but their extent will not be so great as to 
jeopardise the theory of consistent pace. For example, 
the first lap or even half-mile will usually be faster than 
the others, this being a natural tendency which should 
not be checked, as it gets a man into his^running, 
secures him a good berth, and is only employing the 
surplus nervous energy or excitement with which he 
probably stepped on to the track. Plainly also the last 
two laps, whether the race be 3 miles or 10, are going 
to be influenced by the other competitors and by the 
final struggle for the tape. In that final struggle the 
runner should know his sprinting powers, which he has 
been at pains to develop ; and he must sustain his effort 
right through the tape. 

One of the dangers in long-distance running is that 
of going too fast at the start. It is equally prejudicial to 
success if one errs in the opposite direction. Yet how 
often are both mistakes made by young runners, 
particularly at the Oxford-Cambridge Sports, when, 
however, it is only fair to say that the majority of the 
runners are not sufficiently mature to stand the pace of 
first-class 3 -mile running. To expect a young fellow of 
20 or 21 to go his first mile in 4-45 and then carry on 
to beat 1 5 minutes is demanding extraordinary physique ; 
and in the main long-distance runners reach their best 
at an age nearer 30 than 20. Once mature, however, 
the long-distance runner must be prepared for a rapid 
first mile how rapid he can afford to make it only 
experience can dictate and then settle down to a 
regular gait. How regular this may and indeed should 

20 1 



ATHLETICS 

be is evidenced by the consistent lap times of Nurmi 
and Ritola in their races: e.g. Ritola, in the 10,000 
metres at Amsterdam, reeled off lap after lap just ahead 
of Nurmi in almost identical time for each lap, and drew 
rapidly away from the field, whereas one runner who 
ran spasmodically, now in the lead, now near the tail, 
was finished before half the race was run. Spasmodic 
running,, over whatever distance, is suicidal ; the pace 
changes of the great Finns half-way through a race are 
definite accelerations which they are able to sustain, and 
are employed to kill off an already tired opponent, but 
they never take the form of erratic bursts. 

Section 2. The Marathon 

The original Marathon, as every schoolboy knows 
to paraphrase Macaulay was the run of Phidippides 
from the battlefield of Marathon to tell the citizens of 
Athens of their victory over the Persians. Although 
this remarkable run of 26 miles 385 yards was well 
within the compass of a man who had run from Athens to 
Sparta in two days a distance of 152 miles it proved 
fatal to the gallant Greek, who, gasping out, " Rejoice 1 
We conquer," collapsed at the city gates and died. 

Now the fate of this young man may well serve as a 
warning to would-be adventurers on the road from 
Windsor to Stamford Bridge, which forms the A.A.A. 
championship course, or any other Marathon route. 
It is a grave question whether such attempts are good or 
not. The physical strain imposed, particularly upon 
people living under modern conditions of life, is undoubt- 
edly severe. Even assuming that a man is sufficiently 
strong to train for and compete in such an event, the 
demand upon his time is almost unjustifiably great if 
it be remembered that athletics is supposed to be a 
recreation. Only if a man be a natural runner endowed 
with great powers of endurance, if he be over 21 or 
mature, and if he have the temperament and the time 

202 



THE MARATHON 

necessary for a long and strenuous course of training, 
should he contemplate competing. And before training 
at all he ought to undergo a thorough medical overhaul ; 
not leave it until entering for the race, when, of course, 
he is obliged, under A.A.A. Laws, to send in a medical 
certificate of fitness. 

With the revival of the Olympic Games in 1896 the 
Marathon race was instituted; and, appropriately enough, 
as the games were held in Athens, it was won by a Greek, 
Loues. It was not, however, until after the sensational 
race of 1908 from Windsor to Shepherd's Bush that 
Marathon running became popular in England. On 
that occasion, the Italian Dorando reached the stadium 
first but collapsed and was unable to finish without 
aid, the victory being awarded to an American, Hayes, 
whose time was 2 hours 54 minutes 33 seconds. Judged 
by present standards that time was nothing remarkable ; 
but the enthusiasm of that day was unbounded and has 
rarely been rivalled in England. 

Since* that date the Polytechnic Harriers have held 
an annual Marathon race in connection with the 
" Kinnaird " Cup Competition, held on the last Saturday 
in May ; and in 1926 this race carried with it the A.A.A, 
championship. In 1928 the A.A.A. promoted their 
own Marathon championship in July ; another annual 
Marathon is that held in the North of England ; and, 
of course, many Continental countries and America 
stage a championship race. 

Of what type is the Marathon runner ? He may be 
a convert from i o-miling ; and both Kolehmainen, who 
won the Olympic Marathon in 1920, and Stenroos, who 
won it in 1924, had finished first and third respectively 
in the Olympic 10,000 metres in 1912. Probably he 
will be a light little man with powerful legs and fine 
heart and lung development. Style is less important than 
determination. A stylist enjoys advantages of course ; 
but as no Marathon runner can hope to keep on his 
toes, his principal object should be to cover the ground 

203 



ATHLETICS 

as tirelessly as possible, and when fatigued to keep 
plugging along. A relatively slow arm action seems to 
suit the Anglo-Saxon ; the Finns have a loftier action, 
the merits of which have already been discussed. Long- 
striding is obviously out of the question ; rhythm is, 
however, essential. 

One explanation of the severity of Marathon running 
is the road work, for only the start and finish of the race 
may be in an enclosed ground. There is no elasticity 
in a road such as one finds in a cinder track ; every step 
is a jar to the body. To withstand this shaking a runner 
ought to be carefully shod, and attention to the feet is 
vital. 

Shoes should not be new, but they must be strong. 
Rubber soles, or leather soles with rubber inlaid, are 
best. Should the surface of the road be wet or greasy, 
leather must obviously be substituted for rubber. The 
shoes should fit perfectly ; and to help keep out dust 
and grit to get rid of which en route there is no time 
soft woollen socks should be worn, with elastic tops. 

During training the feet may be hardened by using 
a little methylated spirits ; and on the day of the race 
either talc powder or vaseline may be used. Once the 
feet have hardened blisters are unlikely ; if one should 
be contracted let it out at once and cover with liquid 
court plaster. 

The key to success in Marathon running, and the only 
means to ensure no ill-effects, is a systematic course of 
training. It should extend over a period of at least 
three and preferably four months. The training should 
begin easily with short walks at a pace of 4 miles per hour 
and light runs, unless the athlete is already fairly fit. 
Thenceforward the distance and pace should gradually 
be increased. It is a mistake to run too often ; and a 
better system advocates walking rather than running, 
which should be done at the most three times a week. 
On Saturday it is a good plan to have a time trial, and 
on a day in the middle of the week to have a run for 

204. 



THE MARATHON 

speed only. Stamina ought to be developed by means 
of long easy runs working up to 1 6 miles in the eighth 
week, or by long hard walks, which by the same date 
should have reached a distance of 35 or 40 miles. At 
the end of the ninth week a test run over 20 or 22 miles 
may be made. The last week's work before the race 
should be quite light. 

A difficulty which the fit man has to contend with is 
a tendency to over-increase his pace. This must be 
carefully guarded against and the time schedule closely 
followed. A desire to do too much is also liable to 
attack a man who is near the top of his form ; overwork 
in training is always ill-advised, and a man ought to 
finish a practice run or walk feeling comparatively fresh 
and with considerable reserve left in him. 

With regard to diet, it is impossible to lay down hard- 
and-fast rules. During training work or the race it is 
not advisable to take solid food, although some people 
favour taking ripe bananas after 15 miles. Thirst 
should be relieved by rinsing out the mouth : certainly 
nothing acid should be taken. The taking of drugs not 
only renders one liable to disqualification it is medically 
unsound. 

In the race itself, although the speed will be decided 
to some extent by circumstances, the Marathon runner 
needs to guard against too rapid an initial pace. It does 
not pay unless one is an exceptional runner, like the 
Englishman Mills to attempt to force the pace for the 
first 10 miles. The only sound rule is to adhere to a 
time schedule. The R.A.F. runner S. Ferris, who has 
thrice won the A.A.A. Championship and finished fifth 
in the 1924 Olympic Marathon and eighth in that of 
1928, is insistent on this point. In his case the variations 
in time for each 5-mile section over the first 20 miles are 
about a minute only. 

The last 5 miles are admitted to be the most punishing 
of all ; it is here that courage as well as training counts. 
But the man who has the energy and enthusiasm to 

205 



ATHLETICS 

carry out the strenuous training programme, and the 
pluck to go on to the finish when there is nothing in 
him, will reap a satisfaction in his soul above the laurels 
with which, after all, he may not be fortunate enough 
to be crowned. 



Section 3. Cross-country 

England is generally regarded as the home of cross- 
country running, and it is probably true to say that it is the 
country in which the sport enjoys the greatest popularity. 
Throughout the winter, from September until the end 
of March, cross-country running, or its off-shoot, paper- 
chasing, is practised by thousands of devotees all over 
the British Isles ; and although most clubs hold matches 
and competitions, and despite the existence of district 
and national championships, the majority of their 
supporters run simply for pleasure and exercise, treating 
the sport purely as a recreation. 

And undoubtedly cross-country running possesses a 
fascination sufficient to warrant such an attitude. The 
monotony which inevitably accompanies long-distance 
track running is absent from work over the plough ; 
indeed, variety is of its essence, and no two courses are 
alike. The health-giving virtues of the sport scarcely 
require commendation ; but one may touch upon the 
opportunities it affords for team work and training 
together in packs of graded strength. Its variant, 
paper-chasing, affords the further thrill, for hares (of 
whom there are usually two) and hounds alike, of a hunt ; 
and the fun of laying false trails or of scenting them out 
is not inconsiderable. 

The utility of cross-country running as a foundation 
for track work has been discussed in section i of this 
chapter. It was pointed out that although a few excep- 
tional performers on the track were also successful over 
the plough, the majority of track runners are well 
advised to treat cross-country running as gentle exercise 

206 



CROSS-COUNTRY 

to preserve condition during the winter months, and not 
to indulge in a severe competitive season. 

Another argument in support of the theory that only 
in exceptional cases do successful performers in the 
one sphere repeat their achievements in the other is 
to be found in the different style employed in the two 
cases. Primarily the principle of conservation of energy 
applies to both cross-country and distance running ; 
and this principle involves the cultivation of an effortless 
style. But whereas the track runner can develop a 
rhythmic stride and balanced body carriage, with a 
smooth swing of the arms, his friend across the plough 
must often forfeit rhythm in order to preserve greater 
control over his balance under the unfavourable con- 
ditions with which he often has to contend. Quite 
evidently the crossing of ploughed fields, the surmount- 
ing of hedges or other obstacles, or the fording of a 
stream^ not to mention the negotiation of hills, involve 
emergencies which will throw a delicately balanced, 
purely fhythmic runner right out of his stride. Only 
upon hard ground or road will the style advocated for 
long-distance runners be of practical utility : under 
such conditions it may be adopted in its entirety by the 
cross-country runner. 

Conservation of energy being the fundamental prin- 
ciple, any question as to the best method of surmounting 
the different obstacles which confront the runner is 
answerable by its application. In dealing with plough 
and very rough ground, for example, the stride should 
be shortened and the body inclined forward ; normally, 
the former should be as even and natural as possible, 
avoiding, as the track runner was advised to do, over- 
striding. This method of crossing broken ground helps 
to preserve the body balance and eliminates the chance 
of floundering. The stride should also be shortened in 
taking hills ; but here the body should be kept more 
upright. Similarly in going down hills, particularly if 
they be steep, because by the shortened stride the 

207 



ATHLETICS 

balance is retained. Whether ascending or descending 
hills racing is definitely to be avoided. It consumes too 
much energy, and in descending is provocative of stitch, 

A diverting and sometimes painful item in cross- 
country running is the negotiation of obstacles. Gates 
and fences are usually best surmounted by climbing : 
it employs less energy than a vault and the loss in time 
is negligible. Likewise, it is preferable to run through 
streams and ditches, cold and unpleasant though they 
be, rather than to jump them, unless their breadth is 
well within the runner's compass. The method which 
involves least fatigue and maintains the greatest rhythm 
of arms and legs is always the best ; and towards the end 
of a race anything which tends to throw the tired runner 
out of his stride, e.g. jumping a ditch, may prove fatal. 
For this reason also the runner should never hesitate 
before taking an obstacle : experience will teach him 
the best method of attack and enable him to apply his 
knowledge almost automatically. 

The severity of the climate and the strain of a 5 or 
7-mile run demand the cultivation of considerable 
stamina. Training should be gradual and racing avoided 
for the first six or even eight weeks. Walking is as 
invaluable an aid to the creation of stamina for cross- 
country work as in the other branches of distance running 
already discussed ; and long swinging walks form the 
variation to the slow jog-trots with which it is recom- 
mended that the season be begun. These slow runs 
should be taken two or three times a week over 
distances varying from 5 to 7 miles ; and during their 
course every opportunity should be seized to practise 
taking obstacles. Subsequently, i.e. in the second month, 
faster work should be done, still over 5 to 7 miles, and 
the system tuned up to racing fitness, when the com- 
petitive cross-country runner should endeavour as far as 
possible to seek out races of gradually increasing 
severity. The ability to start fast should be cultivated, 
for, whilst guarding against squandering one's reserve 

208 



CROSS-COUNTRY 

too early, one must be prepared in modern races to keep 
up with the leaders, who almost invariably (particularly 
if there is an early obstacle) go off as if about to run a 
mile. 

One of the joys of cross-country is community running. 
The regular Saturday afternoon jaunt in a pack selected 
because its standard coincides with that of oneself is a 
most enjoyable experience, despite the cold winds and 
rain so often encountered. It is a happy custom among 
some hare and hounds clubs to arrange that even in the 
non-competitive packs the men shall keep together until 
the last mile and then have a race home. 

In matches and competitions the team element is 
conspicuous. There are two methods of scoring in 
cross-country races : the one individual, and the other 
by teams. In the team classification, points are scored 
by the first six (or any number agreed upon) men home 
of each team, the sum total representing the points 
obtained. The team with the lowest score wins. It 
may further be arranged that, say, a dozen men run per 
team, and perhaps only six score, but the second six, by 
finishing high up the list before some of the scoring six 
of another club, may yet assist their team by pegging 
back their opponents. Good packing, whereby the 
members of a team endeavour to stick together and by 
their presence encourage one another, at any rate until 
the final stages of the race, is an art which, well per- 
formed under the eye of a good captain, can win valuable 
points for a team, besides providing the team-spirit 
which competitive athletics so often lacks. 

In England the management of cross-country running 
generally during the season is delegated to the National 
Cross-country Union. The Union has power to draw 
up regulations for the conduct of the sport, subject to the 
approval of the general committee of the A.A.A., which 
body can also hear and finally determine appeals from 
decisions of the Union. 

Of late years cross-country running has grown 
o 209 



ATHLETICS 

considerably in popularity abroad. In 1912 a cross- 
country race was included in the Olympic Games and 
won by H. Kolehmainen ; in 1920 and 1924 it was 
again held and won by Nurmi. On the last occasion, 
under a scorching July sun, it was demonstrated by the 
number of serious casualities that the event was un- 
suitable for the time of the year, and it was eliminated 
from the 1928 programme. As an international sport, 
however, its general popularity is undiminished ; and 
in the annual contest between France, Belgium, England, 
Scotland, Ireland and Wales, which began amongst 
some of those countries as far back as 1903, the French 
have given the British runners a sound beating on at 
least four occasions since the War. The sport is also 
prevalent in the United States ; but the severity of the 
climate considerably abbreviates the season. 

It may be added that this sport seems scarcely suitable 
for women on either physical or aesthetic grounds, 
although indulged in by certain English ladies' clubs. 

Section 4. Steeplechase 

This is another event indigenous to Great Britain, 
and one which during the summer is a popular feature 
at sports meetings of all kinds. Spectators invariably 
derive much amusement from the antics and misfortunes 
of the competitors in the water-jump ; and the distance 
runner finds the event a pleasant diversion from his more 
serious labour. 

Unfortunately, as an international event steeple- 
chasing cannot be regarded as standardised. True, it 
features in the programme at the Olympic Games under 
standardised conditions ; but those conditions are, with 
every respect to the I.A.A.F., a travesty of those govern- 
ing the sport as practised in England. The event in the 
games is little more than a track event, with a few light 
hurdles and a water-jump thrown in. At Amsterdam 
it was actually run upon the track, a small section of 

210 



STEEPLECHASE 

grass, with the water-jump protected only by a bar and 
a few plants, being included. Consequently, the race 
became almost a gift for the pure track runner, the 
distance being 3000 metres. 

In Britain the event is run entirely on grass ; the 
hurdles, which should not be more than 3 feet in height, 
are set up about every 75 yards ; and the water-jump 
is guarded by a quickset hedge, surmounting the 
hurdles. The championship course since 1913 has been 
standardised at 2 miles ; but many variants of this 
distance are introduced by sports promoters, and in the 
British Empire v. United States match the pure 440 
yards hurdler is given his opportunity, for the four relay 
runners have to cover only two laps, or less than half a 
mile, apiece. 

The race, even in England, is primarily the perquisite 
of the 4-miler ; but skill in taking the obstacles is of 
greater service here than in the event as held abroad. 
Good hurdling is not essential, merely an advantage, 
inasmuch as it reduces the amount of energy employed ; 
for to jump each hurdle, as many runners do, is most 
wasteful. More important is the method of negotiating 
the water-jump. The better opinion inclines to the view 
that a clear leap is too exhausting, A jump over the 
hedge, and a quick step forward to carry one clear of the 
water before one either stumbles or is trodden upon, is 
generally recommended. It may be added that the 
A.A.A. Rules provide that every competitor must go over 
or through the water, and that jumping to the right or 
left of the water-jump entails disqualification. And, 
incidentally, black or dark blue shorts must be worn. 



CHAPTER IX 

HURDLING 

THERE can be little doubt that hurdling bears 
the palm with the athletic public as the most 
spectacular and exciting of all the events. It is 
the rule rather than the exception to find a crowd of 
spectators brought to their feet by the thrill of a hurdles 
final an indication of popularity which even the 
breathless tension of a sprint race would find it hard to 
equal. The hurdle race is more spectacular than the 
sprint, and whilst embodying a relatively equivalent 
amount of speed, it both demonstrates the precision of 
a highly perfected technique and also admits of the 
entry of that element of chance which in itself has such 
definite appeal to the sporting public. From their point 
of view it is always a fine sight ; from the athlete's it is 
a fine exercise and a fine race. Hurdling still occupies 
a somewhat anomalous position between the field events 
proper and the track events, though it still frequently 
finds its place among the former even on present-day 
programmes. One presumes this is rather because the 
short hurdle race (120 yards) is still occasionally run on 
the grass or " field " encircled by the track e.g. in the 
A.A.A. championships at Stamford Bridge, where, 
unfortunately, the grass has by no means the billiard- 
table surface one would wish for and not so much 
because in the early days of the event the jumping 
element ranked higher in the hurdler's consideration 
than did the running pure and simple. In other words, 
the event was by way of being a " running field event." 
The manner in which this conception has gone com- 

212 



HURDLING 

pletely out of date and has given precedence to an almost 
diametrically opposite opinion (in which hurdling is 
looked upon rather as an " obstacle sprint race," with 
the jumping factor reduced to something to which the 
hurdler himself would probably prefer not to apply the 
term "jumping" at all) will be dealt with in later 
paragraphs. 

Hurdle races now take place over quite a number of 
distances, the commonest being the 120 yards (or no 
metres), the 220 yards (or 200 metres) and the 440 
yards (or 400 metres). Besides these distances, however, 
there are run races of 50, 60 and 70 yards, 80 metres, 
300 yards and steeplechases. In fact in America almost 
any distance from 40 to 300 .yards is run as a hurdle race. 
The 50 and 60 yards hurdle races are distances commonly 
used in women's sports, being races over three and four 
flights of hurdles respectively, 2 feet 6 inches high in 
both cases. It should be noted that in this country 100 
yards is the championship distance for women's hurdle 
races.* The 70 yards race belongs essentially to the 
indoor meetings in America and consists of five flights 
of 3 feet 6 inches high hurdles, 10 yards apart, with a 
start and finish of 15 yards each. The 80 metres is the 
new Olympic race for women to be introduced in 1932, 
The 300 yards is really a freak event and does not occur 
on any standard programme. Steeplechasing, which 
takes place over a series of 3-feet hurdles and -one 
water-jump, is discussed elsewhere. 

Before passing to a more detailed consideration of the 
three usual hurdle races, perhaps one may with advantage 
mention here some facts more or less generally applicable 
to hurdling as a whole. 

The type of athlete that on the average makes the best 
hurdler is the rather tall man around 6 feet in height 
with long legs and loose flexible hips and shoulders ; one 
to whom the adjective " lithe " can be applied admirably, 
whose limbs are well and cleanly built, and the upper part 
of whose body is rather on the light side. As ever, of 

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ATHLETICS 

course, this rule has its exceptions, and though such 
great hurdlers as A. C. Kraenzlein (U.S.A.), Earl 
Thomson (Canada), who, being 6 feet 4 inches in 
height, was rather on the tall side, R. Simpson (U.S.A.), 
G. C. Weightman-Smith and S. J. M. Atkinson (South 
Africa) and F. R. Gaby (Great Britain) conform remark- 
ably well to the description stated above, we still have 
in England to-day a hurdler who is practically the equal 
of most of them and yet is decidedly short in stature 
Lord Burghley. 

Speaking generally, again, the good short distance 
hurdler tends to be a good average sprinter. It is doubtful, 
however, whether more than one of the above-mentioned 
six ^orld-famous hurdlers could record a time of inside 
10^ seconds for the 100 yards, though Kraenzlein won the 
Olympic 60 metres flat in 7 seconds in 1896; and many 
crack quarter-mile hurdlers can return 49 seconds for 
the 440 yards flat. This is really a point of considerable 
interest, for it goes to show that despite the fact that the 
whole trend of modern hurdling has been to reduce the 
element of jumping in actually crossing a hurdle to the 
minimum, it is still apparently the modification of this 
jumping talent when suitably controlled, rather than 
sprinting ability, which makes the first-class hurdler. 

The hurdler's shoes should be very similar to those 
used by the sprinter that is, light and closely fitting, 
but if anything a little stouter and stronger, as the strain 
imposed upon them in taking off at a hurdle and in 
landing from it is far greater than anything a sprint race 
pure and simple will produce. In this respect it is of 
importance to note in passing that attention to the 
condition of both shoes and laces is a more vital matter 
in this race than, perhaps, in any other, for a fault in 
this part of one's equipment in a hurdle race may entail 
not only the disappointment of a lost race, but also the 
possibility of at least a nasty fall, if not any more serious 
mishap. The hurdler's shoe, like the jumper's, must 
have the extra pair of heel spikes, both to give a better 

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HURDLING 

grip and ensure greater stability and also to lessen the 
jar of landing rapidly from the successive hurdles, 
an added means to these ends often being a light leather 
ankle strap. 

Section i. 120 Yards Hurdles 

As far as records show, this is not quite the oldest 
of the hurdle races, for prior to 1864 a 140 yards 
race was the usual distance; but from that date the 
1 20 yards became the accepted distance, and still to-day 
holds premier place amongst them, being a standard 
event on practically every athletic programme. It has 
featured on the A.A.A. championship programme 
since the inception of that meeting in 1866, when the 
event was won in what to-day we would consider the 
astonishing time of iyf seconds. This " record " was, 
however, eclipsed three years later, when i8| seconds 
was recorded as the winning time, and it was not until 
twenty years after the first championship in 1886 
that the 16 second level was reached, and at that time 
1 6 seconds was a world's record ! It was yet another 
ten years almost 1 895 before 16 seconds was broken ; 
md though this feat was repeated seven times previous 
to 1914, two of them being victories for that early 
naster of hurdling, A, C. Kraenzlein, to whom is 
iscribed the introduction of the new " straight leg " 
>tyle into this country and who held the A.A.A, pre-War 
ecord of 151 seconds, it is in the last eight years that 
lurdling has made such phenomenal strides. And now if 
ve see a first-class race won in anything over 1 5 seconds 
ve almost automatically pre-suppose some adverse 
rendition of track or climate to account for it. The 
British record, held jointly until 1928 by four Britishers 
Earl Thomson, Lord Burghley, G. C. Weightman- 
5mith and F. R. Gaby with 14^ seconds, now stands 
o the credit of another S. J. M. Atkinson (South 
\frica), who recorded I4 T V on a grass track. Two of 

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ATHLETICS 

this celebrated quintet are responsible for the existing 
world's records for the 120 yards hurdles (Earl 
Thomson, 141 seconds) and the no metres hurdles 
(G. C. Weightman-Smith, 14! seconds). 

Despite the fact that of the sixty odd A.A.A. 
championships held to date four out of every five have 
been won by Englishmen, there is little doubt that 
from the beginning of the century until a few years ago 
America held an unchallenged supremacy in the hurdling 
world. But to-day it is of interest to note that English, 
and even more so Empire, hurdlers are at least the equal 
of America's best. 

As an Olympic event the no metres hurdles has 
featured since the first re-institution of the games in 
Athens in 1896, when it was won by an American in 
17$ seconds. America has scored six of the eight 
possible Olympic victories to date, the remaining two 
being those of Earl Thomson (Canada) in Antwerp in 
1920 and of S. J. M. Atkinson (South Africa) in 
Amsterdam in 1928. 

One has gone into the history of this event at some 
length not only because of its intrinsic interest, but also 
because it is so clearly indicative of as remarkable a 
transformation as has occurred in the history of all 
athletics. One cannot imagine that the actual physical 
prowess of man has altered to any material extent in sixty 
years, and yet he is now able to run over ten obstacles 
and 1 20 yards practically four seconds faster than he could 
in 1866. Whence, then, comes this astonishingly rapid 
development. Undoubtedly it has been principally due 
to the complete revolution in hurdling style which 
occurred early in this century, and with which, as has 
been mentioned, the name of Kraenzlein is associated. 
It appears that the new style the " straight leg " 
method had had exponents in England previous to 
Kraenzlein's visit in 1900, but it was his phenomenal 
exhibition in that year he established the then miracu- 
lous time of 15! seconds which decided once and for 

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HURDLING 

all that there were no longer two ways of hurdling. 
The subsequent revolution in style was, however, a 
gradual one, and the old methods died hard ; so much 
so, that it is really only now that we are seeing for the 
first time the straight leg style practised in all its intricate 
perfection by a generation of hurdlers born to it and 
brought up on it. 

Before, however, going into the details of styles both 
ancient and modern, let us for a moment consider the 
track arrangements and paraphernalia pertaining to the 
so-called " short " hurdle race, inasmuch as they have 
a very definite bearing upon these details. 

The race is run over 120 yards, during which ten 
hurdles are negotiated. These hurdles are light, 
rectangular frames, standing on wooden feet and in no 
way attached to the ground (see Illustrations). The 
hurdles must be not less than 4 feet in width and are 
3 feet 6 inches high, and they are so spaced as to leave 
10 yards between each flight, whilst the distance from 
the starting line to the first hurdle and from the last 
hurdle to the finishing tape is in both cases 1 5 yards. 

It is proposed to divide the consideration of the details 
of the actual race into the following paragraphs : 
(i) The Start ; (2) The First 1 5 Yards ; (3) Hurdling 
(#) Old and (b} New Styles ; (4) The 10 Yards Between 
Hurdles ; (5) The Last 1 5 Yards and Finish ; and to 
conclude this section with some suggestions with regard 
to training for hurdle races and with some pertinent 
rules on the subject. 

(i) The Start. Though admittedly it is actual hurd- 
ling style that is, the method by which the hurdle is 
crossed which differentiates between an average and a 
first-class hurdler, the latter will never rise to the front 
rank unless he be endowed with or has developed a 
suitable optimum of speed. We have mentioned above 
how few of the world's great hurdlers have been really 
good sprinters, but this does not imply that they are 
slow runners. The hurdler, however, who attempts any 

217 



ATHLETICS 

flat distance over a quarter-mile and makes a reasonable 
success of hurdling as well, is indeed a rara avis. Of 
course, on the other hand, it should be pointed out that 
the really fast sprinter can give quite a reasonable 
account of himself " over the sticks," however little 
style he may possess ; but when it comes to a race between 
the good hurdler with average speed and the good 
sprinter with average style, it will be found that victory 
will go to the former nine times out of ten at least. 
However, speed is a requisite of good hurdling, and as 
will be pointed out later, its acquisition by suitable 
training must be assiduously cultivated. 

This brings one to the point that in hurdle races the 
sprint start or " crouch " start is as essential as it is 
in pure sprint races and must be made if anything more 
accurately, for success in reaching and taking the first 
hurdle depends very much upon it. The details of this 
starting position will be found fully discussed in the 
chapter on sprinting, to which the reader is referred for 
further information. Here it need only be stressed that, 
since the whole hurdle race has to be worked out to a 
matter of inches, meticulous attention must be paid to 
these details, and in particular, perhaps, to the efficient 
digging of starting " holes," be the track grass or 
cinders. For if these holes are carelessly made, or 
perhaps even neglected altogether, the first stride will 
be in the wrong direction or of the wrong length, and 
consequently the first hurdle will not be taken from the 
proper spot, and anything from the loss of a valuable 
fraction of a second to the complete chaos of a smashed 
hurdle or a fall may result. 

In starting, the hurdler must avoid the temptation to 
look up at the first obstacle and must rigidly adhere to 
the strict rules of sprint starting, keeping his eyes fixed 
on approximately that point which his first foot will 
strike as he comes out of his holes. Practice will produce 
that all-essential confidence in the knowledge that if this 
first stride is correctly made the first hurdle will be 

218 



HURDLING 

correctly taken. The question regarding which foot is 
to the fore at the start of a hurdle race is one which 
depends upon various factors and differs with different 
hurdlers. This detail should be carefully worked out 
from the knowledge of which foot is naturally and 
automatically thrown forward in taking a hurdle. With 
this data and a consideration of the number of strides 
taken in reaching the first hurdle, it is a simple matter 
to determine the front leg in starting accordingly. 

(2) The First 15 Yards, Even as the start has been 
shown to embody those principles of extreme accuracy 
which underlie all good hurdling, so must the approach 
to the first hurdle be exact in every respect. Constant 
practice will be necessary to ensure these 1 5 yards being 
covered in exactly the same way on every occasion, and 
this is what must be aimed at a complete mechanisation 
of action so that the approach becomes sufficiently an 
unconscious act to allow full concentration on the 
production of the most perfect style in crossing the actual 
hurdle. These first few yards are important from two 
points of view. First, they must provide opportunity 
for the production of maximum acceleration in the 
limited distance allowed, for once actual hurdling is 
commenced the regularity of the repeated sequence of 
events allows of relatively small increase in the velocity 
gained by the time the first hurdle is reached. And 
secondly, they must ensure that the first take-off is from 
that exactly correct spot which allows the hurdler to 
drop automatically into the rhythmical sequence of 
taking his successive obstacles mentioned above. To 
bring about these two desired results, and the consequent, 
and almost as important, psychological advantage of 
reaching the first hurdle with a slight lead or, at any rate, 
of being able to take it with ease and accuracy, the 
distance must be covered in a constant number of 
suitably regulated strides. This number varies with the 
individual hurdler, and though a few very long-legged 
men have 'found their optimum in seven strides, by far 

219 



ATHLETICS 

the majority use eight or nine, according to their own 
peculiar characteristics. 

(3#) OU Style Hurdling. As this style has now been 
definitely rejected and is not taught to-day, it needs tmt 
brief mention. But from a historical point of view and 
as showing whence has come the relatively recent rapid 
advance in hurdling proficiency, it is of considerable 
interest. 

As was pointed out above, it was this style which was 
a factor in inducing the then existing powers that be to 
include hurdling amongst the field events, for it was the 
jumping element an element which embodied parts of 
both the running long and high jumps which was of 
primary importance. The race was essentially a series 
of small jumps with a run between, a preliminary and a 
final run. The hurdler almost stopped before each 
obstacle, gathered himself together with arms thrown up 
and forward and legs tucked up beneath him, leapt his 
hurdle, landing on the other side with practically 
complete loss of momentum, and then started off again 
to repeat the performance another nine times ! The 
terrific loss of time involved in this so-called " hanging " 
on the hurdle can only be fully appreciated when an old 
and a new style hurdler compete in the same race a 
rare sight nowadays. Before leaving the matter, how- 
ever, it must in all fairness to the departed be said that 
if this style has failed from a utilitarian aspect its 
successor must give it points from the point of view of 
grace and beauty of movement. 

(3^) New Style Hurdling. Herein, of course, lies the 
secret of the whole matter to-day, and it is probable that 
in a few more years only the veterans of the track will 
be able to recall anything but the " straight leg " style. 
Where it came from and who introduced it to this 
country are matters which have been to some extent 
dealt with above, and are really of little concern. The 
straight leg style has come to stay. TV-day it is 
hurdling 1 

220 



HURDLING 

The essence of the style lies in the eradication of 
anything approaching a jumping movement in crossing 
the hurdles. In place of this there is what may be called 
an " elevated stride." The obstacles literally are taken 
in one's stride, the legs being, as it were, split over the 
hurdle, whereby both the time the hurdler is off the 
ground and the height he is above it are reduced to a 
minimum. At the same time, of course, the inevitable 
pause (" hang ") associated with the old style is removed, 
there being just as little interruption as possible when 
taking the hurdle in the regular striding action which 
dominates the whole race, and hence the minimum loss 
of impetus and momentum. The moment the body 
leaves the ground motive force is removed, and therefore 
the hurdler's object is to return to terra firma again just 
as quickly as possible, having in the meantime expended 
the minimum of energy in surmounting his difficulties. 
The stride in mid-air, which is the outcome of straight 
leg hurdling, ensures all these objects being attained 
with the maximum efficiency and speed. 

In detail, this style consists in rapidly raising the 
leading leg, by flexing it at the knee, but just as little as 
possible, and then elevating it to a horizontal position 
and straightening it out over the hurdle. 

Which leg shall lead is a matter for the individual, and 
is usually decided by natural inclination. But having 
decided which leg is naturally the leading leg, it is, of 
course, of vital importance to maintain it always as such, 
and it has already been shown how the starting position 
is dependent upon the result of this decision. 

At the same time as the front leg is going up and 
straightening out, the rear foot is raised strongly on to 
the toes, and this leg automatically becomes straightened 
out also. The lean forward of the body and head is 
meanwhile slightly exaggerated, so that the weight is 
thrown forward, this being further assisted by the arm 
of the opposite side to the leading leg starting to come 
forward. The correct position in this early stage of the 

221 



ATHLETICS 

movement is shown well in Fig. 7. To reduce the 
suggestion of any jumping action hence unnecessary 
loss of energy in driving the body in an upward 
direction to a minimum, the ideal to be aimed at is 
that the back toe should be just losing its contact with 
the ground as the front one crosses the hurdle, thus 

illustrating very well the 
action of the 




" split 
style. 



That the time spent 
in the air may be as 
short as possible, the 
object is first to get just 
as near to the top of 
the hurdle as one can 
without touching it ; and 
secondly, to get the front 
leg down again as near 
the far side of the hurdle 
as is feasible. 

The stages by which 
this is brought about are 
well shown in Figs. 8 
to 12, which should be 
consulted in reading the 
following observations. 

As the throwing for- 
ward of body weight and 
reaching out of the lead- 
ing arm tend to depress the leading leg again on the 
far side of the hurdle, the back leg is meanwhile drawn 
up rapidly, flexed at both hip and knee, and bent out 
horizontally, so that as it crosses the hurdle, thigh and 
leg lie parallel to the top bar, and as close to it as 
possible. They ought, in fact, almost to graze it, 
and because this so often happens both in training and 
competition, hurdlers commonly wear a light leather pad 
on knee and ankle to protect them. As the body rides 

222 



FIG. 7. 



HURDLING 

over the hurdles, it and the head are thrown well forward, 
whilst the leading arm (usually the left, as the right 
leg is more commonly the leading leg) reaches out almost 
to touch the leading foot. The other arm is also raised 
and often thrown somewhat back, but as to some small 
extent this must act as a retarding force, it should, if 




FIG. 8. 

possible, be kept well bunched up to the side, so that it 
can be driven forcibly forward from the shoulder when 
the landing takes place. One of the criteria of good- 
hurdling is that when actually crossing the hurdles the 
head should rise to only an imperceptible degree above 
the line it occupies during the time the runner is on the 
ground. The landing is effected by snapping the leading 

223 



ATHLETICS 

leg down smartly, this being assisted by the forward and 
downward transmission of the body weight, whilst at 
the same time the back leg is swung vigorously round, 
down and through from the top of the hurdle, so that 
it passes its fellow almost at the moment the latter 
reaches the ground, and is driven well forward in 
company with its opposite arm, which, as has been said, 
should have been previously bunched up at the side to 
execute the next stride. 

It will thus be seen that the process of crossing a 
hurdle is an intricate one, and before that essential 




FIG. 9. 

accuracy can be obtained which permits of perfect 
equilibrium and control being maintained during the 
flight and at the same time an efficient conservation of 
energy, much consistent, intelligent and painstaking 
practice will be required. Hurdling does, in some 
respects, conform to a type of field event in that the 
optimum is reached only by a complete mechanisation 
of the action. But, assuredly, the confidence gained by 
an Increasing proficiency in style is a sufficiently valuable 
asset to the hurdler to be worth much seeking. 

One further point only needs mention with regard to 
this complicated process of crossing the bar, and that 

224 



HURDLING 

is the respective distances from the take-off point to the 
hurdle, and from the hurdle to the landing point, which 
constitute this huge " elevated stride." The researches 
of various enthusiasts have put these at an average of 
7 feet 6 inches up and 4 feet 6 inches to 5 feet 6 inches 
down, thus making a total stride of from 1 2 to 1 3 feet. 




FIG. 10. 

(4) The 10 Yards Between Hurdles. This as a 
separate title is, of course, not quite accurate, for some 
part of that 10 yards we have already discussed in the 
rise to and landing from the hurdle. The rest consists 
simply of three regular strides between every two 
hurdles. These strides should be taken with a rhythmical 
p 225 



ATHLETICS 

precision which varies practically not one iota from hurdle 
to hurdle, so that the whole action comes to suggest the 
almost monotonous ticking of a metronome, with every 
fourth beat exaggerated and prolonged. Taking the 
distance represented by this fourth " beat," i.e. the 
distance traversed in actually crossing the hurdle as an 

average 12 feet 6 
inches, the three 
inter-hurdle strides 
will approximate to 
6 feet each, the first 
one after landing 
being probably a 
shade less than this 
and the other two, 
therefore, propor- 
tionately, a shade 
longer. The im- 
portant thing to 
remember with re- 
gard to these three 
strides is that they 
must be made in 
a perfectly straight 
direction, with no 
zigzagging from 
side to side, which 
would upset the 

FlG XI all-essential equili- 

brium and poise 
necessary for taking each successive obstacle. 

(5) The Last 15 Yards and Finish. Little need be 
said of this stage of the race. It is here, again, that the 
sprinting capabilities of % the hurdler come to the fore. 
Landing from the last hurdle, he must endeavour to 
make the drive forward with the rear foot and opposite 
hand even more forcible than usual, for the object now 
is to pick up again as much acceleration as the small 

226 




HURDLING 

distance remaining will allow. Many a hurdle race has 
been won in these last few yards by the man who has 
developed the power of rapidly getting up speed. It is 
essential that good sprinting form, in which the factor 
of keeping one's gaze firmly fixed in one's own lane is 
not the least important, be maintained to the end, and 
that the ideal sprinting finish of running not at but 




FIG. 12, 

through the tape be aimed at always. To counteract the 
common tendency to stumble and stagger during the 
run in, which is so often seen and is due, presumably, 
to the sudden transition from the set regular three-stride 
action between the hurdles to the free, open, swinging 
stride of sprinting, or, again, perhaps to the tendency to 
" press " when the end of the race is in sight, the first 
stride or two after landing from the last hurdle should 
be short and rapid, gradually lengthening out to the 
individual competitor's average sprinting stride. In 
other words, rapid but progressive acceleration pays 
better in the long run than attempting to assume 

227 



ATHLETICS 

highest speed immediately by a full-length stride after 
the last hurdle. The steadiness and balance which ex- 
perience brings to the actual hurdling bears its richest 
fruit in these last 10 yards when it is of paramount 
importance to have such perfect co-ordination and control 
that every ounce can be put into this last supreme effort 
without producing any detrimental loss of form. 

Training. Training for hurdle races may be divided 
into three sections, viz. : General Training, Sprinting 
Training and Actual Hurdling. 

Under general training one is referring not so much 
to the general principles of getting physically fit, which 
are set out at length as applying to all aspects of athletics 
in an earlier chapter, but rather to exercises specially 
directed to produce proficiency in hurdling. 

In the early days of training, good brisk walks can be 
of great value to the hurdler, provided always they are 
not carried to the extent of muscular stiffness. For 
supple muscles, loose joints and a general flexibility of 
the body are the essential requisites of the successful 
hurdler. Hence the many and varied exercises suggested 
and used to accomplish these ends, exercises which at 
first should form practically the whole of the hurdler's 
training, and later should always be used as a preliminary 
to training proper or to competition. One may mention 
a few of those more usually practised. 

As a beginning, simply touching the toes with knees 
straight and " high-kicking " are both of considerable 
value as muscle looseners, as also is the Russian leg 
dance, in which, sitting upright on the heels, alternate 
legs are kicked out to the front. Perhaps the commonest 
exercise of all is the so-called " splits/' in which one 
simply assumes on the ground (or floor) a position 
corresponding relatively to that which is taken up when 
one is actually crossing a hurdle, i.e. one leg straight out 
in front and the other drawn up at right angles to the 
body with hip and knee flexed. The body is then swung 
forward and attempts made to touch the front toes with 

228 



HURDLING 

the fingers. Again the difficult action by which the back 
leg is swung up, over and forwards can be practised 
simply standing upright on what would be the leading 
leg, or, better still, over either an actual hurdle or some 
object of corresponding height. 

Concerning sprinting training little need be said here, 
as all necessary detail will be found in another chapter, 
except to stress the importance of this part of a hurdler's 
work. Sprinting should always form at least 50 per cent, 
or more of his training and special attention should 
be paid, first, to the minutiae of starting technique; 
secondly, to the rapid development of speed, so essential 
in those initial and terminal stages of his race ; and lastly, 
to the practice of correct finishing form. To develop 
stamina he should also at occasional intervals, once or 
twice a week when fit, run through distances from 150 
to 220 yards. 

Hurdling training itself maybe said never to necessitate 
running over a complete flight of ten hurdles. To 
begin with, while style is being cultivated and polished 
up, the use of 3 feet hurdles is to be advocated, and at 
first these can with advantage have swinging or balanced 
tops. Later, one may tackle the full-sized hurdle, but 
it is never necessary to use more than three or four of 
these at the outside, whilst in the early stages of training 
it is as well to concentrate on the actual crossing of the 
obstacle, and cover the intervening spaces with five small 
strides instead of the normal three longer ones. The 
three-stride rhythm in itself needs very little practice, 
and will come almost automatically in competition if the 
hurdling style is good. Apart from this latter, the two 
great things that demand constant and careful practice 
are the first 1 5 yards and the last 1 5 yards, and there are 
many who, while remembering the former, shamefully 
neglect the most important latter. 

Finally, in hurdling training remember that patience 
and perseverance are essential, that it is much better to 
build up a good style slowly from a lot of little points, 

229 



ATHLETICS 

each learnt carefully and studied closely, than to acquire 
a bad style rapidly from a few points half-learnt and 
carelessly agglomerated into an unstable whole. 

With regard to hurdling rules, there are only relatively 
few of intrinsic interest, such as the disqualification 
which results from knocking down three or more 
hurdles (two in the 70 yards indoor race), whilst, 
strictly speaking, " swinging " or " rocking " hurdles 
count as broken, and no international record can be 
allowed be there only one hurdle broken. Again, in any 
hurdle race the hurdle must be crossed by the whole 
of the body, and any trailing of a leg alongside a hurdle 
entails the penalty of disqualification. 

Section 2. 220 Yards Hurdles 

This event, though not yet honoured with a place 
on the A.A.A. programme, and having occurred only 
twice (as 200 metres) in the Olympic Games, of 1900 
and 1904, is a standard one in America, where it has 
featured for over forty years. It is somewhat natural, 
therefore, to find that the world's record lies to the 
credit of an American, C. R. Brookins, who put up 
the amazing time of 23 seconds for the distance. 
Incidentally, this leads one to a genuine appreciation of 
the great Kraenzlein, who, thirty years ago, recorded 
23$ seconds for the distance. In this country, since the 
inclusion of the event in the Oxford and Cambridge 
Sports programme in 1922, and with its spasmodic 
appearances in those great meetings between these two 
'Varsities and the American Universities, it may fairly 
be said that it has gained considerably in popularity 
both with spectator and athlete, and there are many to-day 
who would like to see it find a place in the regular 
athletic programme. Hurdle races are undoubtedly 
sufficiently attractive from all points of view to merit the 
inclusion of more than one distance in the average 
competition, 

230 



HURDLING 

The British record, incidentally, is 24^ seconds and 
is held by Lord Burghley. 

The race is run over ten hurdles ; but these are, in this 
case, 20 yards apart and only 2 feet 6 inches in height. 
The distance from start to first hurdle and from last 
hurdle to finish is, in either case, 20 yards. 

The extra distance brings in the additional requisite of 
stamina, and it is indeed astonishing to discover how 
extremely fatiguing the running of a mere furlong over 
obstacles can be ! Many a well-trained man, good 
sprinter and good hurdler, too, though he may be, has 
at least staggered the last few yards of this race if not 
run himself out completely. To develop this necessary 
stamina, therefore, quite a fair amount of training should 
be done in the earlier stages of work at distances around 
300 yards. 

Sprinting ability is relatively even more important 
in this event than in the shorter hurdle races, and over 
this distance a good sprinter who possesses but little 
hurdling style or technique is much more likely to make 
a successful match of it with the rather slower but more 
expert hurdler than he was over the 120 yards. Hurdling 
technique, however, still remains a most potent factor, 
and the straight leg style should again be used. With 
the lower hurdles, of course, the " hurdle-in-one's- 
stride " idea (the " step-over " action) comes more into 
evidence, and again the aim should be to reduce the race 
to a series of regular mechanical strides. It has been 
estimated that the optimum is seven strides of approxi- 
mately 7 feet each between hurdles, with an initial run 
up of about eleven strides. Until a considerable degree 
of fitness and proficiency has been reached it is unlikely 
that the 220 yards hurdler will be able to maintain this 
precise regularity right through to the end of his race, 
but it is this he must aim at, for here, as in all hurdle 
races, it is consistency which tells in the long run. 



231 



ATHLETICS 

Section 3. 440 Yards Hurdles 

This race, though dignified by being both an 
Olympic and an A.A.A. championship event, is run 
scarcely more frequently in this country than even the 
220 yards hurdles, which occur only in the Oxford v. 
Cambridge Meeting. This is not because it is not a 
good event and a popular event, but the gruelling 
nature of the race is not exactly likely to attract large 
numbers of competitors. It is probably of all the events 
on an average athletic programme relatively the most 
strenuous and exhausting. 

As an Olympic event it has featured on all the 
programmes except two (the" first in Athens in 1896 and 
that of the 1912 Stockholm Games, when it was 
temporarily dropped), and until the 1928 Olympiad of 
Amsterdam, when it was won for Great Britain by Lord 
Burghley, has provided a continuous succession of 
American victories. The same great hurdler (Burghley) 
holds the British record for the event of 54 seconds, a 
time which is, however, well behind the world's record 
of 52 g- seconds established by F. A. Gibson (U.S.A.). 

Incidentally, Taylor of U.S.A. ran 400 metres hurdles 
in 52 seconds this year (1928). 

The event became an A.A.A. championship in 1914, 
in which year it was won in 59^ seconds ! and of the 
dozen odd competitions held to date only three have 
been won by other than an Englishman a record 
indicative of Great Britain's high standing in this as, 
in fact, in all hurdle events. 

The race is run over ten hurdles, the height of these 
in this case being 3 feet. Between the hurdles a distance 
of 38^ yards is left ; the run up to the first hurdle is 
49i yards and the finishing distance from the last hurdle 
46^ yards. 

The race is run with the hurdles en tchelon round the 
track, and hence, besides possessing running ability and 

232 



HURDLING 

hurdling technique, the quarter-mile hurdler must be a 
good judge of pace, both his own and his opponents', 
for it may be that drawing an outside " string " he has 
to wait until the home straight before coming on terms 
of relative equality with his opponents. The distance 
necessitates very arduous training in order to attain to a 
satisfactory degree of physical fitness, and this training 
should be on the lines of that laid down elsewhere for 
the quarter-mile (q.v.\ though, generally speaking, it is 
found that the quarter-mile hurdler conforms rather to 
the half-miler than to the sprinter type of athlete. 

Hurdling technique is much the same as for the 
shorter distances, and an attempt should be made 
towards set regularity of stride throughout the race, 
though sheer fatigue will usually render this difficult if 
not impossible. For the early part of the race it should 
be possible to maintain a steady fifteen strides between 
hurdles, but in the last 120 yards or so it is probably 
often a safer policy to increase this to seventeen rather 
than risk having to take off from the wrong foot, a 
contingency which often arises about this stage in the 
race from an involuntary shortening of the stride 
secondary to fatigue. 



CHAPTER X 
JUMPING 

Section I. Long Jump 

THE long jump or, as it is often less appropri- 
ately called nowadays, the broad jump is one 
of the " old stagers " amongst the field events. 
It has featured on athletic programmes since the in- 
ception of organised athletics in the middle of last 
century, has been an A.A.A. championship event since 
18665 an d an Olympic event since the re-institution of 
the games at Athens in 1896. It is interesting to note 
that though the English native long jump record 
(24 feet 2\ inches) is now almost 2 feet behind the 
existing world's record, in all the sixty odd A.A.A, 
championships held to date only ten times has the event 
been won by other than an Englishman. In the eight 
Olympiads since 1896, however, only once has victory 
been wrested from the United States, and then by a 
Swede. 

Long jumping, strictly speaking, should include both 
running and standing jumps, but as the latter are to-day 
barely recognised as standard events, discussion of them 
has been relegated to a brief paragraph at the end of this 
section. The long jump being the first of the field 
events proper which we have considered, one may 
perhaps to advantage attempt to explain the essential 
difference between competition in field events and track 
events. Both groups demand always a certain amount 
of initial ability and talent ; both require continued and 
whole-hearted practice and perseverance for the produc- 
tion of that perfect co-ordination of mind and body which 

234 



LONG JUMP 

alone spells success for the athlete, though this latter 
factor is perhaps of even greater importance to the field 
event man than to his brother of the track. For in field 
event competition a man's co-ordination must be so 
perfected that his resultant actions are practically auto- 
matic, and herein lies the radical difference between these 
two great branches of the sport. The field event man 
has no need (with reference to his opponents) for the use 
of tactics or of judgment. He is a separate entity, and 
his aim and object is to produce the best effort of which 
that entity is capable, irrespective of those with whom he 
is competing. For the track event man, his rivals, their 
performances, their tactics, their methods, are a very 
vital concern. They constitute an element in any race 
which he must fully discount when assessing his prospects 
in that race. In other words, as an old Cambridge athlete 
has very aptly put it : " The field event man attempts to 
perform better than his rival, the track event man to 
defeat him ! " Superficially, this may seem a very fine 
differentiation, but it does most satisfactorily express 
the underlying objects of the competitors in either 
branch of athletics, explaining how, with the identical 
ultimate end in view superiority over one's opponents 
they approach this end from two essentially different 
angles. 

Returning to the more limited field of the long jump, 
it should, in the first place, even at the risk of stating the 
obvious, be pointed out that this event is an essential 
combination of both running and jumping; but the 
latter is wholly dependent on the former. This does 
not imply that the super-sprinter is pan passu the super- 
long jumper, for more is required than mere speed, but 
it does mean that the man who is essentially a slow 
runner can never hope to achieve great proficiency in 
long jumping. 

Speed, therefore, is one of the primary requisites in 
successful long jumping in order that sufficient velocity 
may be obtained to throw the body forward from a fixed 



ATHLETICS 

point with the maximum momentum to the maximum 
distance. In this respect it may be observed that 
an " even time " sprinter can probably record a jump 
of 2 1 feet at any time, without any particular effort or 
concentration on the fact that he is jumping. Besides 
speed, the long jumper must possess as one of his basic 
assets natural spring, by which he can apply the momen- 
tum, gained by the former in the optimum direction. 
The run and the jump are not two separate entities, 
they must be merged indissolubly into one smooth, 
homogeneous whole. 

Thus it is ability in these two respects especially that 
is demanded by this particular field event, but something 
further is required. This ability must be systematically 
developed and its component parts so harmonised that 
perfect co-ordination results, and this means steady 
perseverance and practice with minute and meticulous 
attention to all detail over a very long period. The more 
of an automaton the long jumper can make himself, the 
more successful will he be. 

And here a few words regarding training for long 
jumping may be in place. 

The training will always be long and considerable 
patience and optimism are necessary. That " Rome 
was not built in a day " is a maxim which should be 
carried in the heart of every prospective long jumper. 
Disappointments are likely to be numerous, and " off- 
days " uncomfortably frequent, for in many ways long 
jumping is comparable to golf its charm lies in its 
elusiveness. But steady, thorough, persevering practice 
will undoubtedly bring its own reward in the formation, 
simply perhaps by a process of time, of the " long jump 
habit 1 " Training may be divided into three sections 
exercises, sprinting and jumping. Exercises are most 
essential for the development and strengthening of those 
muscles, especially of the thighs and calves, which have 
to stand so big a strain in long jumping, and no actual 
jumping should even be attempted until a satisfactorily 

236 



LONG JUMP 

loose and supple muscular condition is reached, both 
by exercises and massage. In this respect it is most 
highly important that both in training and in competi- 
tion the greatest care should be taken to guard against 
cold. 

Exercises alone should form the basis of the first week 
or two of training, and should be continued in modified 
form throughout the whole season. 

Sprinting, in the shape of short bursts of up to 50 
yards, and of medium-pace work, well up on the toes, 
should be the long jumper's only activity for the next 
three weeks or so, and should always form a preliminary 
to his jumping practice. The importance of this initial 
period of running pure and simple is the development of a 
perfectly regular stride, which later becomes such a vital 
matter in ensuring a successful run-up. Actual jumping 
practice itself should, therefore, not be commenced until 
about a month after the beginning of training, and should 
be limited to five or six jumps a day at the most. The 
details of the jumping training will be considered under 
the discussion of those various parts of the long jump 
into which it can be divided. 

These are the Run-up, the Take-off, the Flight and 
the Landing. 

The Run-up H. M. Abrahams is responsible for a 
very true saying in regard to long jumping : " Take care 
of the run-up and the jump will take care of itself! " 
This serves to show the vital importance of the first part 
of the jump. We have already pointed out that one of 
the primary requisites in the long jumper is speed and 
the ability to develop this relatively rapidly, and that a 
good sprinter can produce a jump of over 20 feet on 
speed alone. But it is not simply speed in the unqualified 
sense of the word that is required, it is a speed productive 
of such a uniformly regular acceleration that when the 
critical moment of the take-off arrives the body, besides 
having been given its greatest possible velocity, still 
maintains perfect co-ordination, allowing of complete 

237 



ATHLETICS 

steadiness and balance. It is this combination of speed 
and steadiness which lies at the bottom of all successful 
long jumping* In other words, there is an optimum 
rather than a maximum velocity to be obtained in each 
particular case, and the man who reaches the take-off 
board in the shortest time, but so fast that he tends to 
wobble, to strain, to lose his balance or to " jump off" 
away from the straight, is not going to cover as much 
ground as the man who is a shade slower in his run 
but maintains perfect body control. This explains why, 
though the good sprinter can almost automatically clear 
a fair distance, he is not necessarily the good jumper, 
for without considerable practice he will lack the 
knowledge of how to adapt his speed in such a way as 
to ensure steadiness. In fact the ultimate object of 
training is to make the optimum and the maximum 
speeds for the run-up approximate, to as great a degree 
as is consistent with good balance. Since, therefore, one 
is really aiming at developing one's greatest useful speed, 
it is necessary that the run-up which, incidentally, on 
all good tracks to-day is a narrow cinder path some 4 feet 
in width should be about 50 yards in length, as the 
minimum distance in which it is possible to attain this 
maximum speed is for by far the largest majority of men 
from 35 to 45 yards. 

Between these limits each individual jumper must find 
his own particular distance. And this brings one to the 
kernel in the nut of the run-up namely the production 
of a perfectly regular, standard, uniform effort. The 
run-up should become absolutely mechanical, an auto- 
matic effort, to such an extent that the jumper has 
perfect confidence in his ability to strike the take-off 
board fair and square ten jumps out of ten. How is this 
highly desirable result to be produced ? Only by much 
painstaking effort, careful attention to minute detail, and 
persevering practice. 

The first essential in training for the run-up is the 
three to four weeks of short sprinting practice mentioned 

238 



LONG JUMP 

above. This ensures a perfectly regular length of stride 
being developed, and when this stride has become to all 
intente and purposes a habit, then a consistent and smooth 
approach to the take-off board is guaranteed. When this 
stage has been reached, the problem then arises for each 
individual jumper of discovering the particular point for 
him at which he must start his run-up. This point 
should always be the same distance from the take-off 
board, allowing for average normal conditions. It is 
only after considerable experience that due allowance can 
be made without several preliminary trials for abnormal 
conditions such as the state of the track, especially in 
wet weather, or the presence of a following or head wind, 
or the degree of physical fitness of the individual 
competitor himself. 

As to methods of finding this point, the following two, 
really but variations of the same idea, are those most 
frequently used. Starting with that foot on the take-off 
board from which one naturally jumps (it matters not 
whether 'it be right or left, provided it is always the 
same foot), the back being turned to the long jump 
pit and the heel of this take-off foot level with that 
edge of the board nearest the pit, one starts to run, 
using as far as possible the regular stride developed 
in the period or sprinting practice, until some forty 
odd yards have been covered. About this distance a 
point is marked where one particular foot comes down. 
Then, starting from this point and off this foot, the 
distance is run in the reverse direction, taking the 
greatest care neither to " reach " for the board by 
lengthening the last stride or strides nor to shorten 
them in order to hit it fairly. If, running right through 
with even, regular strides, one does not hit the board 
properly, then it is a matter of advancing or putting 
back the marked point according to whether the take-off 
foot is short of or over the board. The alternative to 
this method is simply to choose a point at random, 
some 40 yards from the board, and, noticing the result 

239 



ATHLETICS 

of the first run through from this point, adjust accord- 
ingly as before. 

When, however, by one or the other method the 
correct point has been found, it is well worth while measur- 
ing this distance accurately, using the tape measure with 
which every jumper should be provided, as it will then* 
always be a basis from which to start one's practice, or 
thq " trial run through," one at least of which should 
always be taken before actual competition. 

The other point to bear carefully in mind is the foot 
from which one started on this mark and to make sure 
there is no mistake about this, some long jumpers begin 
their run-up from the customary crouch start of the 
sprinter, which always ensures one particular foot being 
to the fore. 

In competition, if this method is not used, the usual 
procedure is to place some distinctive mark at the side 
of the track opposite the set point, and starting a few 
yards behind this, make sure that one begins one's full 
striding from this point and off the correct foot. Some 
jumpers use another similar mark about half-way 
through their run-up, which is opposite a point they 
know a certain foot should strike. If they are wrong by 
the time they reach this spot, they know they will in all 
probability be wrong when they finish the run, and hence 
it gives them time to pull up before reaching the take-off 
board and so avoid a possible " no jump." This is 
adjudged by whether any part of the foot passes over 
either the edge of the take-off board nearer the pit or 
a line extended from this edge on either side of the board. 

There are those, however, who deprecate the use of 
this second mark on the grounds that to watch it tends 
to upset the normal run through. This is a matter which 
the individual must decide for himself. 

There is one slight modification permissible to the 
well-trained jumper in the dictum that the run-up must 
consist of perfectly regular, even strides, and this is that 
the last stride or two of all should be a shade shorter than 

240 



LONG JUMP 

their predecessors, to allow of an effectual " gathering " 
of the body for the coming spring of the jump itself. 
Any other departure from the normal striding the 
series of rapid " chop " strides at the end of the run, the 
almost pathetic reaching out strides which form the so- 
called " feeling for the board, " the run-off to the side 
of the board all these are distinct faults, and evidence 
of insufficient practice practice which has not been 
enough to make the run-up the absolutely mechanical 
factor it should be in long jumping. 

The Take-off. The take-off is the half-way house 
between the run-up and the jump proper, and it should 
constitute the merging imperceptibly of the one into the 
other the apparently effortless translation of the cause 
of velocity and momentum into the result thereof. If 
any hesitation occurs at the moment the run becomes a 
jump, then there are still faults to be eradicated. 

The take-off board (according to A.A.A. Rules) is a 
piece of hard wood, usually deal, 4 feet long, 4 inches 
deep * and 8 inches wide, buried so that its upper 
surface is flush with the ground, and painted white. 
Thus it is from this 8 -inch surface that the actual jump 
takes place ; and it is vital that the take-off should occur 
from this surface, not only because anything beyond it 
constitutes a " no jump " and anything behind it an 
obvious loss of possible distance, but also because the 
resistance offered by the wood permits of the development 
of the optimum amount of spring. The real object of 
careful training in the run-up is to ensure that the whole 
ball of the foot strikes this board fair and square every 
time. It is here that there occurs the transference of 
weight from heel to toe, and it is here that there is added 
to the momentum produced by the run-up the element of 
" spring " which provides for the upward and hence 
directs the subsequent forward movement of the body. 
For there is an optimum angle at which the body should 
be despatched namely about 45 degrees from the 
horizontal. (This will be further discussed in the next 
Q 241 



ATHLETICS 

section.) At the same time as the spring takes place 
from the take-off foot and leg, the body is generally 
gathered up into compact form, and the arms thrown 
up and forward, thus bringing into action every propul- 
sive force possible. 

At the moment of change from run to jump, a consider- 
able strain is thrown upon the muscles of the take-off 
leg, and considerable force upon the take-off heel. It 
is to lessen these that the jumper's shoes are provided 
with a pair of heel spikes and it is often of advantage 
to supplement these with a rubber pad inside the heel of 
the shoe to prevent the excessive jarring which is apt to 
occur, and obviate the chronic inflammation of the bone 
of the heel which is such a common sequel. 

In training for this particular part of the jump, the 
practice of spending a considerable time early in the 
season simply at first with standing jumps, and later with 
the shortest of runs-up, e.g. about i o yards, has much to 
be said for it, in that besides developing the all-essential 
" spring " it helps to give one that very necessary " feel " 
of the board which means, later, confidence, and that, in 
turn, success. 

Flight, The period occupied by the actual jump is so 
brief, on an average about one second, that the amount 
of conscious effort possible in the limited time 
especially in competition is almost negligible, and in 
the truly trained and experienced long jumper should be 
practically non-existent. But the fact that one aims at 
making the flight a purely automatic effort in competition 
does not mean that it can be performed anyhow. There 
is a very definite optimum course along which the body 
should travel, and also a very definite optimum position 
it should take up while travelling. Much of the success of 
this part of the jump depends upon those that have gone 
before, as has to some extent been pointed out previously. 
The run-up has provided speed, and, at any rate as 
important, it has also developed balance and steadiness 
and it is this latter element, if successfully transferred 

242 



LONG JUMP 

through the take-off, that goes to make or mar the jump 
as a whole. 

If, whilst in the air, the arms or the legs or the body 
as a whole have to be moved in various odd directions 
in an attempt to maintain balance, the inevitable result 
is loss of distance. It needs much practice, too, before 
the " gathering up " of the body from the take-off board 
can be successfully accomplished without disturbance of 
equilibrium. And one other further factor which is all- 
important in the flight is gained from the take-off board, 
namely that spring which leads to the height so requisite 
to the production of good distance. It has been estimated 
that the man who clears 23 feet reaches a height of some 
5 feet at the top of his flight, whilst those who jump in 
the world's record class of 25 feet and over must be 
achieving the no mean feat of being as much as 5 feet 
9 inches above the pit at the apex of their flight ! 

This question of sufficient elevation is of vital import- 
ance, for exactly as in throwing a cricket ball in to the 
wicket from the boundary one throws it in an upward 
direction to procure maximum distance, so must the long 
jumper who, as will be pointed out shortly, conforms 
to the shape of a human ball go up whilst he goes 
forward if he is to produce his best. And in actual 
jumping training it is this acquisition of sufficient height 
that must be assiduously practised. Some prefer 
to practise simply by concentration on " getting high " 
after taking-off, but perhaps the majority are best 
advised in this part of their training to resort to some 
additional aid. This usually takes the form of two light 
poles planted one on either side of the track, some 
definite distance from the take-off and between which is 
stretched a piece of worsted at a definite height above the 
ground. With regard to this distance and this height, 
an average for an adult long jumper is some 14 to 15 
feet from the take-off, and about 3 feet 6 inches to 4 feet 
for the height of the worsted. In the early stages of 
training, of course, both may conveniently be less and 

H3 



ATHLETICS 

then gradually increased until the maximum distance 
consistent with steadiness is arrived at. The practice of 
substituting a low hurdle, however light, for the worsted 
is not one we recommend, in view of the obvious attendant 
dangers. 

The body during the flight, as we have said, should 
be as much the " human ball " as possible. The course 
taken by this " ball " is a parabola, with a long gradual 
rise, and then, as momentum is lost, from air resistance 
and the pull of gravity, a relatively quicker fall. To 

reduce this loss of 
momentum to a mini- 
mum the body during 
its flight should, to 
lessen the resistance 
of the air to it, be 
rendered as compact 
as possible. 

The accompanying 
Fig. 1 3 depicts a jum- 
per just at the apex 
of his flight (approxi- 
mately some 5 feet 
above the pit), and the form shown is well-nigh perfect. 
The legs are gathered up against the body, so that the 
knees almost touch the chin ; the arms have been thrown 
up and well forward ; the head is forward, and the eyes 
are focussed on that spot in the pit on which it is hoped to 
land ; the feet are well together ; and the whole picture 
exemplifies that retention of momentum for the greatest 
possible time which should be the aim and object of every 
long jumper. 

There is one other outstanding " style " in the flight, 
which finds much vogue in America and has not a few 
adherents in this country, and that is the so-called 
" hitch-kick " style, in which the legs are made to 
perform several rapid kicks during the time the jumper 
is in the air (see Fig. 14). The supporters of this 

244 




FIG. 13. 



LONG JUMP 

method claim that by this means it is possible to give 
the body in its passage through the air an added 
impetus, and a higher position relative to the parabola 
of flight for its centre of gravity, while others explain 
it as simply a maintenance of the run-up action con- 
tinued through uninterruptedly into the air. In this 
method the hands tend to be flung up above the 




FIG. 14. 

head (see Fig. 14), a fault which, incidentally, may 
be present in any jumper, whatever his style, but is 
nevertheless obviously a fault at all times since as soon 
as the arms pass the horizontal they must automatically 
become a retarding force. If it is intended to maintain 
also the steadiness and balance engendered by a good 
run-up, it can only be said that the results hardly seem 
to justify the belief, whilst the idea of a fresh stimulus to 
momentum is hardly one which will find the support of 

245 



ATHLETICS 

any student of mechanics. The point with regard to 
the raising of the body's centre of gravity is the only 
part of the theory which holds water. Altogether, despite 
the fact that this style has been employed by some of the 
best long jumpers the world has known, one cannot find 
apart from this one suggestion adequate basis in the 
theory of it to warrant its adoption by the average long 
jumper. 

Landing With regard to the final stage of the jump, 
where the jumper once more comes to earth, there is 
but little to be said. The principal point to stress here 
is the shooting forward of the legs immediately previous 
to landing. By this means it is possible to add another 
good 6 inches or so on to the length of the jump, but it 
must always be done bearing in mind the one basic 
principle of long jumping good balance, which it is 
just as essential to maintain right up to the end as it was 
to produce it in the initial run-up. For over-reaching 
and consequent loss of equilibrium will produce that 
most disappointing of all results, a falling back into the 
pit behind a good distance as achieved by the feet. On 
the other hand, if, on landing, the jumper tends to fall 
forward with any force, he may be sure that he has come 
down too soon, that he has not jumped high enough to 
permit his store of momentum having had sufficient 
time to expend itself. The landing should be made 
with the feet well together and at a point which has been 
fixed by the eyes from the top of the flight. To assist 
in this " reaching out " for a good result, both in training 
and in competition, many jumpers adopt the practice of 
placing a piece of white paper in the pit at the point on 
which they hope to land a practice which has much to 
recommend it, providing the point is one which does not 
demand an impossibility from the individual concerned. 

Section IA. Standing Long Jump 

As has been mentioned above, this event does not 
figure in many present-day programmes, but it still finds 

246 



HOP, STEP AND JUMP 

a certain amount of favour in America (particularly in 
indoor athletics) and perhaps more in Ireland and 
certain Continental countries. It was included in the 
second Olympic programme (Paris, 1900) and retained 
until the 1912 Olympiad at Stockholm, since when it 
has been dropped. Three of these four Olympic contests 
were won by America the fourth by Greece and all 
the American victories were, incidentally, by the same 
man, R, Ewry, who in one of them established the 
world's record for the event of 1 1 feet 44- inches. 

It has never been an A.A.A, championship, and as 
far as is known is not practised at all in this country. 

The event may be looked upon as simply the running 
long jump bereft of its run. In other words, the velocity 
factor is completely removed, that of spring being of 
paramount importance. The feet may be placed in any 
position at will on the take-off board, but they must 
only leave the ground once, when the actual jump is made. 
" Rocking, " or swinging alternately from heel to toe, is, 
however, permissible ; and it is by this means, together 
with an exaggerated arm swing and an ultimate crouch, 
with bent knees and tensed body immediately before 
the jump is made, that the requisite momentum is 
produced. 

The jump, once the take-off has been made, i.e. the 
flight and the landing, corresponds exactly with what 
has been said above with reference to the running long 
jump, except that the hitch-kick style has never yet been 
used during the flight, 

Section 2. Hop, Step and Jump 

The hop, step and jump is a somewhat anomalous 
event which cannot honestly be said to find a great deal 
of favour in either the athlete's or the public's eye. It 
was only in 1914 that it was raised to the honour of being 
an A.A.A. championship, and as far as we know this and 
the District Championships are practically the only 
meetings in this country in which it features on the 

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ATHLETICS 

programme ; and as of the nine championships held 
up to date five have been foreign victories, everything 
seems to point to the fact that, in England at any 
rate, its following is very small. In some form or 
other, however, it has been an Olympic event since the 
first games at Athens in 1896, and has once been won 
by an Englishman. The honours in the remaining 
seven contests have been shared by no less than five 
other nations, which may, perhaps, indicate a more 
general interest in the event than is evidenced in this 
country. It is of interest also to note that the present 
world's record is held by a Britisher in the person of 
A. W. Winter of Australia, who established the distance 
of 50 feet 1 1 J inches in the 1924 Olympic Games in 
Paris. The best English performances are some 4 to 
5 feet short of this mark. 

There appear to be two almost completely dissimilar 
types of athlete who favour this event the long, loose- 
limbed type with good shoulders and strong back, as 
exemplified by Winter, and the short, stocky " rubber- 
ball " type with well-muscled legs and a superabundance 
of spring, well typified by the Japanese, Oda, last year's 
(1928) Olympic winner. 

The event itself partakes of many of the characteristics 
of the running long jump, and the majority of the 
observations that have been made previously about the 
latter will apply equally to the hop, step and jump. 
The training should be on exactly similar lines 
exercises, sprinting and actual jumping and the prin- 
ciples of the run-up and the take-off will be identical in 
both cases. After the take-off, the name of the event 
indicates fairly clearly its component parts. The hop is 
a leap from the take-off foot on to the same foot ; the 
step from that foot to the opposite one ; and the ump 
from this second foot on to both |feet this final stage 
being in the nature really of a pseudo-standing long jump ; 
" pseudo " because there still remains, despite the inter- 
ruptions in movement at the take-off, at the end of the 

248 



HOP, STEP AND JUMP 

hop and the end of the step, a certain amount of the 
original momentum generated by the run-up. 

As in the long jump the imperceptible merging of run 
into jump was stipulated as the essential for perfection, 
so in the hop, step and jump, but three times over ! 

If the attainment of change of movement without 
appreciable loss of velocity was the difficult problem in 
the long jump, how much more difficult are the three 
changes of the hop, step and jump. And yet herein lies 
the secret of success in this event the production of the 
maximum continuity of action throughout its three 
component parts. 

This demands primarily good speed in the run-up, 
and then the element of " spring " which may be said 
to be required in two forms the passive and the active 
in the subsequent movements. By this is meant that 
for the hop and the step, spring to produce height is not 
so necessary as in the long jump proper, but spring to 
make the contact with the ground at the end of these 
two stages as light as possible, to compensate to as great 
an extent as possible for the resistance of this contact, 
this is important, and this one has termed " passive " 
spring. It is the sort of elastic touch which enables the 
performer to bound smoothly from one stage to the next 
with the minimum loss of momentum. Coming to the 
final stage of the jump, here, of course, just as in the long 
jump, active spring is required to send the body forward 
at the optimum angle and to the optimum height for the 
production of the maximum distance, and in view of the 
fact that the jump starts from an actually much slower take- 
off having been automatically retarded by the previous hop 
and step, relatively much more spring is needed. 

With regard to the proportion of energy that must be 
put into the three different parts, the consensus of 
opinion seems to be that they should be gradually 
increasing efforts. To reach 50 feet, the hop, step and 
jump should, respectively, be about 13 feet, 16 feet and 
2 1 feet. This reckoning is rather on the " bouncing 

249 



ATHLETICS 

ball " basis, and is actually the result usually produced 
by the smaller type of jumper in this "event. Another 
school maintains that the hop should be a greater effort 
than the step (e.g. the reverse of the above, the former 
being 1 6 feet and the latter 1 3 feet), the idea here being 
that by so lengthening the hop as to be able to shorten 
the step, without actual loss of distance, it is possible to 
allow of a better gathering up of the body preliminary to 
what, in either method, is the great effort, namely the jump. 
It will easily be realised that the muscular strain in 
this event is very considerable, and heel-spikes an 
essential, whilst the rubber pad in the heel of the shoes 
of both feet is to be even more strongly advocated than 
for long jumping. Exercises to strengthen leg and foot 
muscles are exceedingly important in this event, as are 
those which aim at procuring that steadiness, balance 
and co-ordination which relatively are of even more 
vital concern here than in the long jump, 

Section 3. The High Jump 
By C. T, VAN GEYZEL 

Nearly every great jumper uses an acquired form or 
style of jumping which appears more or less unnatural. 
Natural ability spring, suppleness and strength may 
carry a jumper over a considerable height, but really 
great heights have only been cleared by men who, in 
addition to possessing natural gifts, have paid very careful 
attention to acquiring a scientific and economical style. 

It must be definitely stated here, however, that there 
is no set and definite number of movements which must 
be performed if success is to be attained. Great per- 
formers have all of them mannerisms, individual and 
peculiar to themselves. What they do have in common 
is this, that they observe certain fundamental principles 
on which the clearance of great heights depends. 

There are three main forms of jumping, of which that 
known as the " scissors " form is the oldest. 

250 



HIGH JUMP 

The athlete using this method approaches from the 
right side. (It is assumed that the jump is made from 
the left foot.) His take-off leg, the left, is the leg farther 
away from the bar. The right leg is swung up and is 
followed by the left. The body is held upright and the 
jumper is in a sitting position over the bar at the time 
of clearing it. The height reached is determined by 
spring and the swing of the legs, but it is apparent that 
the rigid, seated position over the bar does not allow of 
free leg swings. There is no body turn or " lay-out " 
that is, the body is not flattened out into a horizontal 
position at the moment of clearance nor are the hips 
twisted clear of and swung away from the bar. The 
style has obvious limitations. A form which does not 
employ a " lay-out " cannot be economical, for an 
upright carriage necessitates lifting the body through 
too great a height, and must be wasteful of strength and 
energy. 

The style which grew out of the old " scissors " form 
improved very considerably on it, eliminating its 
disadvantages, employing a more or less complete lay-out 
and incorporating a body turn and leg action which 
swing the hips away from and clear of the bar. This style 
is known as the " straight-over " or " Eastern " form. 

The third main form of jumping is the " Western " 
form, or roll as it is sometimes called. 

The jumper using this form takes off from the foot 
nearer to the bar a left-footed jumper approaches from 
the left side at an angle of about 45 degrees. At the 
moment of clearance the body lies right along the bar, 
complete " lay-out " being employed. It is the most 
economical of all the styles and has been used by those 
jumpers who have cleared the greatest heights. 

The Western form of jumping is hardly practised in 
Europe, where it has been and still to some extent is 
regarded as a style of rather doubtful fairness. The 
Western " roller " it is believed " dives," and there is 
a widespread belief that he depresses the bar to below 

251 



ATHLETICS 

the nominal height and holds it on with the arm that 
goes over the bar first. This arm is undoubtedly flung 
downwards to help the lifting action of the hip and may 
come in contact with the bar ; but it is unlikely that it 
is deliberately used for the purpose of keeping the bar 
on the pegs. That would seem to call for an improbably 
high degree of skill, taking into consideration the very 
short time in which the whole action of the jump has to 
be completed. In any event the style is recognised and 
has been used with great advantage by notable performers 
from the United States, and there seems little doubt that 
it will very shortly be practised more widely by jumpers 
in Europe. 

In this chapter a detailed description first of the 
straight-over jump and then of the Western form will 
be attempted. 

The Straight-over or Eastern Form . It will be assumed 
throughout that the jumper springs off his left foot. 
The left leg will be referred to as the " take-off " leg, 
and the right leg, the leg which is kicked up first, as the 
"leading leg," A jump may be split up into three 
parts : the run-up and take-off, the swing up to and 
action over the bar, and the landing. 

The run-up and take-off are of extreme importance. 
The correct take-off position is determined by standing 
in front of the bar and swinging the right leg up straight, 
and past the bar. If the take-off foot is on the right 
mark the right foot should just miss kicking the bar in 
the upward swing of the right leg. Maximum results 
cannot possibly be obtained unless the jumper takes off 
from absolutely the right spot. If the spring is made 
from too far away he will reach his greatest height in 
front of the bar and will be dropping at the moment of 
clearance. If, on the other hand, he takes off from too 
close in, he will not have enough room in which to 
perform the action of the jump truly, and will displace 
the bar on this upward journey. It cannot be too 
strongly stressed that the only correct take-off mark 

252 



HIGH JUMP 

should be just that distance away from the bar which 
will enable the jumper to reach his greatest height in 
the air at the precise moment when he clears the bar. 

When the take-off position has been ascertained the 
jumper has to fix on the length of his run. This will 
vary with the individual. The run should not be too 
long, but just long enough to enable the jumper to work 
up the speed that suits him best and to gather him- 
self comfortably for the spring; 10 to 15 yards is 
generally considered sufficient. 

An easy paced, confident, springy run is to be recom- 
mended. Too slow a run will not provide enough 
forward momentum to carry the jumper over and across 
the bar, whereas if the run is made at too great a speed, 
the jumper will not be able to convert forward momentum 
into height and will jump into the bar. In any event too 
great a distance would be covered and height lost. 

Experiment will show each man the speed that suits 
him best. The jumper who has great strength of leg 
and *can check his forward momentum by a vigorous 
stamp of his take-off foot will be able to approach the 
bar at a more rapid rate than one who has not the 
necessary leg strength. 

The body should be leaned forward slightly during 
the run up, so that it will be directly over the take-off 
foot when the spring is made. Some jumpers, how- 
ever, especially those deficient in natural spring, hold 
their bodies more upright when taking off, because 
they rely on the power of the upward kick of the legs, 
especially that of the leading one, to gain height, as 
an upright carriage enables them to kick the leading 
leg up more freely, 

The jumper who is not sure of taking off correctly 
has a tendency to draw back from the bar when 
approaching it, with the result that the body leans 
backwards and is not directly over the take-off foot 
when the spring is made. This robs the stamp of 
the take-off foot of its effectiveness. Experiment will 



ATHLETICS 




FIG. 1 6. Leading Leg Over. 



FIG. 1 8. Turning. 




F IG . I5 . Take Off. 




FIG. 19. Landing, 



254 



HIGH JUMP 

convince that a stronger spring can be made when the 
body is directly over the foot off which the spring is made. 

In making a jump the heel of the take-off foot is 
thrust down hard and the spring is made off the whole 
foot from heel to toes, the knee being slightly bent. 
As the spring is made the right or leading leg is swung 
up straight and hard and slightly towards the left. The 
arms support the rise of the body, being flung upwards, 
the right arm coming slightly across the body towards 
the left, starting a body turn. When the right leg is 
clearing the bar the left is swung up powerfully, fitting 
smoothly into the lifting action. After clearing the bar 
the right leg is swung and pivoted towards the left and 
downward while the left continues its swing. When the 
left leg reaches maximum height the body is leaned 
backward and in towards the left while the arms aid the 
turn and lay-out. The turn and lay-out will swing the 
hips clear of the bar, and the action of the left leg, which 
is cut back and downwards, further helps to swing the 
hips free and completes the turn. The landing is made 
on the left foot and the jumper should face the bar at 
the moment of landing. 

In the style just described it is important to swing the 
leading leg up as high and straight as possible, for the 
height attained depends largely upon this. The swing 
of the take-off leg supplements the lifting action of the 
leading leg. The upward swing of this leg and its 
subsequent backward and downward kick, together with 
the arm action and body twist, make the lay-out possible. 

The Western Jump. The Western form differs from 
all others in that the spring is made from off the foot 
which is nearer to the bar. The jumper approaches 
from the left side at an angle of 45 degrees. He takes 
off from his left foot and swings his right up hard and 
parallel to the bar. The left follows the right rapidly 
and powerfully. The left arm is extended over the bar 
and the body held more or less upright. When the 
right leg is above the left and about level with the bar 



ATHLETICS 

the body is snapped into a full " lay-out " that is, is 
parallel to the bar. The right leg is stretched out 
fully and the left bent at the knee and tucked under 
the right thigh (see Figure 20. Position of H. M. 
Osborne, world's record holder, at the top of his jump.) 
At the moment of straightening out, the body is turned 
or rolled over towards the left and lies on its left side. 
This turning motion is aided and accompanied by the 




FIG. 20. 

movement of the left arm, which from its extended 
position is swung down and in towards the body. The 
head, which is carried low, is turned towards the left at 
the same time. The action of head and left arm. help 
to lift the left hip up and clear of the bar. When the 
turn is completed the jumper drops into the pit, landing 
face downwards on hands and foot. 

In this form the right leg and side clear easily and are 
never likely to hit the bar, while the left side is pushed 
up by quick-lifting action of the left leg. 

Some jumpers, instead of making the turn when they 
straighten out into the " lay-out, " start it soon after the 
moment of taking-off. The style is not easy to acquire. 
The movements must be well timed and must fit in 
perfectly with each other. It requires much practice 
and careful attention to detail. 

256 



HIGH JUMP 

Taking-off from the inner foot does not come by any 
means naturally to a jumper. There is always the fear 
of hitting the bar with the nearer side, especially as the 
Western jumper needs to take-off from close in. Then 
there is the undoubted tendency to lean back while 
taking-off, in the attempt to start a " lay-out " early, 
thus lessening the effectiveness of the spring. The 
novice would be well advised to keep his eyes on the 
take-off mark. In addition to the advantage mentioned, 
namely that there is no danger of hitting the bar with 
the right leg or side, there is this further advantage, that 
the Western jumper " lays out " completely, whereas in 
the straight-over jump more than a three-quarter " lay- 
out " is rarely obtained. 

Men have used the Western roll to clear heights of 
over 6 feet 6 inches, and Harold Osborne, the United 
States Olympic jumper and world's record holder, has 
used it to reach 6 feet 8J inches. It is not probable, 
however, that such a height will ever be reached again, 
because the Western jumper has a tendency to hit the 
bar with his left arm and to come down on it with his 
left thigh. The old bar, which could only come off the 
pegs one way, i.e. into the landing pit, was not easily 
displaced by a jumper pressing it down and against the 
uprights. The new method of balancing the bar on the 
pegs has removed this advantage, because it can t>e 
pushed off into the run-up as well. 

It is not possible to state that one style is superior to 
the other, though the Western roll is perhaps the more 
economical. Men are not built alike and have prefer- 
ences. The novice will soon find out for himself the 
style which he could develop with the greater success. 

Those choosing to perfect the straight-over form can 
certainly draw encouragement from the fact that many 
men have used this style in clearing heights of over 
6 feet 3 inches. R. W, Landon, an Olympic champion 
from the U.S.A., used it to clear 6 feet 4 inches. It has 
been employed with great effect by Pierre Lewden of 
R 257 



ATHLETICS 

France, one of the greatest jumpers the world has seen. 
A man of small stature, he has been over very nearly 6J 
feet. The case of Lewden and other great performers 
who have not possessed the undoubted advantage 
of height leads naturally to the conclusion that height 
is not an essential qualification. Spring, suppleness 
and nervous strength and energy are more important 
qualities than height pure and simple. 

Training. The high jump is a strenuous event and 
one in which all the muscles of the body are called on to 
play their part. The entire body should, therefore, be 
strengthened and brought to a high state of fitness. 
Body exercises are of the greatest value, particularly 
those which strengthen the muscles of the waist and 
back. Nor should arms and shoulders be neglected. 
They should be strengthened by light, quick exer- 
cises. Heavy work which tends to stiffen should be 
avoided. 

The jumper requires toughness of muscle and at the 
same time has to be supple, and needs to preserve elasti- 
city. Walking as preliminary training cannot be 
bettered. Walks should be fairly long, taken at a 
comfortable speed, and broken up by short runs. Slow 
jogging on the track too will be found beneficial, but on 
the approach of the actual competitive season all work 
which would tend to slow one up should be avoided. 
Exercises, such as heel raising, and foot twisting 
exercises which strengthen feet, ankles and the arches 
of the feet, should be practised. High-kicking and 
stretching exercises, such as standing upright and 
then bending forward to touch the ground with the 
fingers, keeping the knees unbent the while, are of 
great use. 

Practice. The novice should spend time and care in 
perfecting his run-up and making certain of hitting his 
take-off mark. He should then pay attention to perfect- 
ing his form. He should concentrate on individual 
jumps, making each one as carefully and perfectly as 

258 



HIGH JUMP 

possible. Bad habits come through carelessness, and 
once acquired they are not easily got rid of. 

A common fault is not taking-off from the right 
place over low heights, and using more strength than 
is necessary in clearing them. The importance of the 
approach and take-off cannot be exaggerated. Lack of 
care in perfecting them has destroyed the chances of 
many men who might have reached championship 
heights. 

If a coach is not available it is advisable to have a 
friend by one during practice, to point out faults. The 
observer should give each detail in the action of a jump 
individual attention. He should watch the line of the 
run-up, the exact spot from which the spring is made, 
the swing of the legs, the position of the body and tne 
carriage of the arms. Attention should be paid to the 
way in which the take-off leg is thrust down. The heel 
should be stamped down hard and the whole foot from 
heel to toes used. Through hurrying themselves 
jumpers often fail to thrust the taking-off foot down 
fully and fairly, and instead take-off from just the outside 
of the foot. * 

It is advisable to jump at low heights till form is 
acquired, and then to try for height in order to gain 
confidence. One should not try for height more often 
than once a week, however, as a big effort breaks down 
spring. When a jumper becomes fairly sure of himself 
he could with advantage reserve big efforts for competi- 
tions, provided they are not too infrequent, and content 
himself with a few jumps over a height which he can 
clear fairly easily. After a certain point in proficiency 
is reached actual jumping ceases to be an important part 
of a jumper's training. He should aim instead at 
maintaining strength and suppleness of muscle and at 
being full of spring and the desire to jump on the day 
of competition. To this end it is absolutely necessary 
that all work during the competitive season should be 
light and quick, and that the jumper should rest 

259 



ATHLETICS 

completely for two or three days before each important 
competition. 

Competition. The jumper should arrive on the 
ground early enough to give him time to " limber-up " 
carefully. He should make himself warm and loose by 
running and going through loosening and stretching 
exercises. Experiment will show each man how much 
limbering-up he needs and what period of rest between 
the limbering-up and the competition suits him best. 

The jumper should measure or pace out his run-up 
just before the competition, and then rest comfortably 
and warmly wrapped up till the bar is up at the height at 
which he intends to start in. It is a mistake to start in 
too early. Many jumpers do this through lack of 
confidence, but a little experiment at practice should 
accustom a jumper to start in at what is for him the 
right height. A man who warms to his work and jumps 
best at his sixth jump should so arrange it that that 
sixth jump shall be as near the deciding jump as 
possible. 

Muscles should be kept warm in between jumps. 
Cold muscles mean a loss of elasticity. 

The jumper should avoid a cramped or uncomfortable 
position while resting between jumps, and should unlace 
his shoes after each jump. A tight shoe interferes with 
circulation. 

It is advisable to perform one or two lazy stretching 
exercises before jumping, and if the day is at all cold 
to have a light limber-up between jumps. Each jump 
should be made as well as possible, and the jumper 
should concentrate on his own jumping and not mind 
the form of other competitors. If he should fail at any 
height he should take time in order to rest and collect 
himself before making his second attempt. 

The excitement of a long-drawn-out competition often 
makes the mouth and throat uncomfortably dry. It is 
therefore wise to take a bottle of water out to the field 
with one. 

260 



STANDING HIGH JUMP 

Section JA, Standing High Jump 

This event is really no longer recognised amongst 
standard athletic competitions. In pre-War days it had 
a considerable vogue both in America and on the 
Continent, and is still to some extent practised in the 
former country (in indoor sports particularly) and in 
Ireland. From previous records and statistics one 
gathers that in Great Britain the standing high jump has 
never at any time found much favour, and it has never 
been granted A.A.A. championship rank. In the 
Olympic Games, however, it found a place from 1900 
to 1912, but has not featured in Olympic programmes 
since the War. In the four Olympiads in which it was 
held, it was won on each occasion by America, the first 
three victories (1900, 1904, 1908) standing to the credit 
of one man R. Ewry who, as has been mentioned 
previously, established a similar record in the sister-event, 
the standing long jump. His best effort in this series 
was 5 feet 5 inches in Paris in 1900, and this height 
stood as the world's record for the event until 1913, 
when it was eclipsed by a compatriot, W. Goehring, who 
then cleared an extra three-quarters of an inch. 

Obviously, success in the event depends upon the 
amount of spring possessed by the jumper, and it is 
interesting to note that the added factor of run-up 
i.e. momentum as occurring in the running high jump, 
accounts for no less than 14^ inches in the difference 
between the world's records for these two events. 

Apart from spring, technique is, of course, as import- 
ant as ever, the " scissors " style and the several 
variations of the horizontal or " rolling " method being 
all employed. The rules for the event simply stipulate that 
the jumper's feet must leave the ground once only, though 
" rocking " alternate lifting of the body weight from 
heels to toes is permissible. This rocking movement, 
combined with a good arm swing and an initial semi- 
crouch or gathering-up of the body immediately previous 

261 



ATHLETICS 

to the actual jump, are the only points of particular 
interest, apart from the actual methods of clearing the 
bar, which correspond exactly with those described 
above for the high jump proper. 

The man who excels at this event is usually tall, with 
powerful cleanly-cut muscles, and possessed of an 
exceptional degree of natural elasticity and spring. 
Such a type is well exemplified in J. E. London (the 
Polytechnic Harrier sprinter and jumper), who though 
as far as we know he has never competed in an actual 
standing high jump competition put up a remarkable 
performance in 1927 in the match A, A, A. v. Cambridge 
University, when he comfortably cleared 6 feet 2 inches 
with a run-up that literally consisted of only three very 
slow paces ! 

Amongst training exercises hopping on the toes, 
either off both feet together or off each foot separately, 
is one of the most valuable exercises. 

Section 4. Pole Vault 

There seems to be a very prevalent idea amongst 
followers of athletics in Great Britain that the pole vault 
is a comparatively new field event almost that it is 
a post- War innovation. This is, of course, quite a 
misconception, and is probably due to the unfortunate 
lack of interest in this particular event in this country, 
which was so noticeable until a few years ago, since when 
one has been glad to observe a most encouraging 
recrudescence in the appeal of the pole vault both to 
competitor and spectator alike. Historically, it is of 
interest to note that the Fell men have practised this sport 
for very many years, whilst in the Fen country it has also 
been known for ages, having been put to the utilitarian 
purpose of crossing ditches, i.e. a pole broad jump ! 
Actually the event is of long standing in the A.A.A. 
championship programme, having been established in 
1866, when this meeting first became an organised 

262 



POLE VAULT 

concern. The pole vault championship has therefore 
been competed for some sixty times, and though nearly 
forty of these have been English victories, only two or 
three of these forty have occurred since 1 900 ! It has 
been a standard event in every one of the eight Olym- 
piads held to date, and in every one of those eight pole 
vault competitions Olympic honours have fallen to the 
prowess of American athletes. There is little doubt that 
to-day the United States is the home of the pole vault 
experts. And the world's record also is held by an 
American, Lee Barnes, who cleared 14 feet if inches ; but 
the general English standard after originally leading the 
way to the 1 1 -foot level, where it remained for many years, 
is now again steadily advancing towards the 12 -foot 
mark. It is also a healthy sign to note the embodiment 
of the pole vault in the Oxford and Cambridge Sports 
programme since 1923, and its adoption by the public 
schools sports organisers since 1925. 

The latter fact is of particular importance, as it is 
from those schoolboys of to-day who have received 
satisfactory tuition in the somewhat difficult technique 
of this event, and have, prior to leaving school, developed 
at any rate the rudiments of style, that one may hope for 
the first-class exponents of the future. The event 
is essentially of such a complex nature that it demands 
anything up to four or five seasons of what is really 
little more than steady, careful training before results 
of any real merit can be produced. And hence, if 
these years can be spent at school instead of, as has 
too often been the case until quite recently, during the 
full maturity of a man's athletic career, one can with 
reasonable hope look forward to England producing 
vaulters of really first-class standard before many more 
years have elapsed. And this should most certainly be 
striven for, because the pole vault is a good event in 
every sense of the word. It has been accused of being 
rather more acrobatic than purely athletic, but even 
though admittedly the former element may come into 

263 



ATHLETICS 

it, yet it still demands all those essential attributes, 
except, perhaps, speed, which go towards making up a 
successful field event. It is most certainly also a highly 
spectacular event, and though the public generally may 
not yet be capable of appreciating the finer points of the 
technique concerned, there is no doubt they thoroughly 
enjoy it as a sight. 

Though heavy men and tall men in fact all sorts of 
men have met with considerable success in pole jumping, 
the type which appears to predominate is the rather 
shorter, well-knit, often almost " stocky " type, with a 
good breadth of shoulder and strongly developed arms. 
And in this respect the event is, in its way, unique, for 
apart from the throwing events it is the only one in 
which arms and shoulders rather than legs and hips are 
called upon to make the essential effort. For this reason 
the best training for pole jumping, apart from actual 
jumping, is to be found amongst those many weird and 
wonderful devices which constitute the equipment of any 
well-fitted modern gymnasium. And much at least a 
month of this sort of work must be done before any- 
thing more strenuous than the lowest of practice vaults 
is attempted. The rest of the pole vaulter's training 
should consist of mild sprinting practice, of gaining 
experience in running easily carrying the pole, whilst 
exactly as with every other form of jump, actual practice 
over the bar should be limited to a maximum of five 
or six attempts. 

A.A.A. Rules state that the pole, as used in this event, 
may be of either wood or bamboo, but the latter is 
almost exclusively the material chosen to-day. This is 
chiefly because it has been found that the bamboo pole 
stands relatively much more strain than the wooden one, 
especially if, as is permitted, it is bound with adhesive 
tape, which latter, incidentally, is also of great assistance 
to the jumper in allowing a much firmer grip to be taken. 
Furthermore, the bamboo pole has a longer life on the 
average, arid (perhaps most important of all) bends rather 

264 



POLE VAULT 

than breaks when its life is eventually ended, so offer- 
ing much less risk of any serious accident resulting 
from this mishap. Poles may be of any length and any 
diameter, the average measurements for these dimensions 
being about 14 to 15 feet and 2^ to 3 inches respectively. 
In the choice of a pole, however, more important factors 
than these are its weight and its balance, the true values 
of which can only be properly assessed by men with 
considerable experience in the event. 

The uprights, which are at least 1 2 feet apart, and cross- 
bar are similar to those used in high jumping, except that 
the former are fitted with various devices by which they 
may be extended to the greater heights attained by the 
pole vaulter. Unlike the conditions in high jumping, 
however, it is permissible for a competitor to have the 
uprights moved during competition, provided this move- 
ment be not more than 2 feet in any direction. The 
take-off in pole vaulting is made by running the pole 
into the so-called " take-off box." This " box," placed 
immediately below the centre of the cross-bar, consists 
essentially of a block of wood some 6 inches thick and 
buried 2 feet deep. From about 2 feet 6 inches in front 
of this board a slope approximately 18 inches wide 
extends down from the level of the run-up track to a 
vertical distance of about 9 inches on the back board. 
The point of the pole is thrust against this board when 
the take-off is made. 

The landing pit for the pole jump should be a semi- 
circle, with its centre at the take-off box, and at least 
14 to 15 feet in diameter, to allow for the various 
awkward positions in which the jumper may fall. 

Having now briefly discussed the paraphernalia 
necessary to the event, one may pass to a consideration 
of the details of the vault itself. To stress the essential 
importance of the whole complicated series of movements 
being run into a smooth, uninterrupted sequence, it is 
proposed to describe the event as a whole, without any 
attempt to divide it up into its various comjflment parts. 

265 



ATHLETICS 

In the run-up, the relative amount of speed required 
is not important, provided, that, whatever that speed, it 
is gradually developed to such a degree that when the 
take-off arrives the body is almost automatically swung 
up on the pole without any perceptible stop or jerk. 
Of course, generally speaking, the greater the speed the 
greater the momentum produced, and hence the better 
the. swing ; but it is an optimum rather than a maximum 
which must be aimed at, since the latter will tend to 
produce an interruption in the sequence of movements 
quite sufficient to discount any advantage previously 
gained by rapidity of approach to 
the take-off. A run-up of 20 to 
30 yards is usually ample, but to 
accomplish this distance whilst 
carrying the pole, and maintain 
steadiness of both pole and body, 
is a matter requiring persistent 
practice. The pole (during the 
run-up) is held by both hands 
more or less parallel to the 
ground, or perhaps with the point 
which, incidentally, may be 
either spiked or consist simply of 
a wooden knob just slightly 
raised. In right-handed jumpers 
this hand is the uppermost on the 

pole and is placed under it, the left hand being some 
2 feet 6 inches further down the pole and placed over it 
(see Figure 21). The correct point at which the grip 
with the right (or upper) hand should be taken is 
decided by holding the pole vertically against the cross- 
bar and judging with the eye the point on the pole 
opposite the bar. The right hand should then hold the 
pole some few inches above the selected point. 

Coming, thus, to the " take-off," the point of the pole 
is plunged into the take-off box fairly and squarely 
against the back board. This tilting down of the point 

266 




FIG. 21. 




FIG. 22. 



POLE VAULT 

should raise the far end of the pole sufficiently to lift 

the arms slightly above the head. The lower hand is 

now run up to the 

upper never above 

it, as this constitutes 

" climbing " and is not 

permitted and the 

body swung off the 

ground (see Figure 22), 

the legs assisting this 

movement by almost 

automatically swinging 

forwards and upwards. 

Now comes the stage 

when strength of arms 

and shoulders tells. As 

the momentum from 

the run-up peters out, 

the body is pulled up 

with *the arms, and the legs are drawn up towards the 

chest, until the whole body is more or less bunched up 

on the pole, roughly at the level of the cross-bar (see 
Figures 23 and 24). As the upward 
pull and swing continue, mostly the 
former now, the body is turned 
round to the left (see Figure 25), so 
that when the feet and legs are shot 
out as far and as high as possible, and 
the arms raised to an angle above 
the point where the hands grasp the 
pole, the body comes to be face down 
over the bar. The termination of this 
turning movement, which, as ever, 
must come as a smooth continuation 
of the upward pull, is shown in 
Figure 26. (The shoulders are well 

above the level of the hands, and the legs are just in 

the process of being straightened out. Note that the 

267 




\ 



FIG. 23. 




FIG. 24. 



ATHLETICS 

right hand still maintains its position just immediately 

above the left.) The completion of this stage is admir- 
ably shown in Figure 27, both legs 
and arms now being completely 
straight and the body swung face 
downwards well over the bar. There 
only remains now to get the upper 
part of the body safely over the cross- 
bar and to release the pole in such a 
way that it falls back from the jump, 
for a pole following through the 
cross-bar that a jumper has already 
successfully cleared is a most dis- 
tressing occurrence. 

This final process is brought about 

by a last thrust with the arms, which not only sends the 

pole back, but also acts as a force to propel the head 

and arms over the bar, below which level the feet have 

already probably dropped 

(see Figure 28). If this 

final thrust can be achieved 

while the legs are still 

directed upward, there is 

every possibility of adding 

a good 6 inches or so to the 

jump. Figure 29 shows 

the completed release of 

the pole, which is falling 

back to the track, whilst 

the jumper himself de- 
monstrates perfect falling 

technique, the body de- 
scending in a straight 

line and squarely facing 

the bar, so that the landing 

will take place in the middle of the pit and on the feet. 
It can be seen from this brief description that the 

series of movements which comprise this event form a 

268 




FIG. 25. 



POLE VAULT 

rather complicated mechanism which demands from the 
jumper the complete confidence which can only* come 





FIG. 26. 



FIG. 27. 



from long practice and experience, and from a very high 
degree of physical fitness. In order that this may not 
be put to any greater strain than is necessary, it is 




FIG. 28. 



essential that in competition the pole vaulter be very 
careful to keep thoroughly warm, and a further saving 

269 



ATHLETICS 

nowadays is allowed by the rule which permits a jumper 
to come in at any height he chooses and by its most 
recent extension, which gives him the option, after 
having a preliminary jump at a lower height, of missing 
certain heights and coming in again at a higher level, 
providing that should he fail here he abides by the 
original height of his earlier record. When once a man 
is a sufficiently competent judge of his own ability, this 
ruling comes as a great boon, for the effort and strain 




FIG. 29. 

demanded by the event are such that after the first five 
or six jumps they militate against the probability of any 
further improvement. 

In conclusion, one can only say that, with the advent 
of more competent teachers in the public schools, 
combined with the visits to these schools of first-class 
exponents of the event, and with its increasing popularity 
amongst the rising generation of athletes, one hopes it 
will not now be many years before England turns 
out pole jumpers capable of holding their own with the 
world's best. 

270 



CHAPTER XI 

THROWING 
By M. C. NOKES 
Section i. General Considerations 

THE physical activities which the young of the 
human species indulge in unprovoked, and 
acquire without instruction, may be classified as 
running, jumping, climbing and throwing. The last of 
these is biologically the last to be acquired, as the develop- 
ment of the hand is a necessity for the performance of 
the act, and the hand is only possessed in any but a very 
crude form by the simia and the human race. It seems, 
according to Kohler, that in the case of chimpanzees, 
throwing is aggressive, directional and usually expresses 
anger that is to say, it is either a utilitarian activity or is 
an expression of passion and not one of the forms of play, 
such as jumping and climbing, which are the frequent 
delight of these animals. With us, however, throwing 
is certainly one of the forms of play, and instead of 
consisting of aiming at a mark, it has developed in the 
athletics of modern times into throwing for distance. 
It is perhaps worth noticing that the more primitive 
throwing at a mark is retained in the game of cricket. 

It seems, therefore, that throwing is first practised 
because it satisfies some primitive play-instinct, and later, 
in an organised community, it gives the individual a 
chance of asserting his superiority over his fellows, which 
is always considered a desirable end to attain. But 
perhaps the highest incentive of all to efficient throwing 
is the accompanying sensation of Tightness or adequacy 
of bodily movement, an aesthetic experience which is 

271 



ATHLETICS 

incommunicable in words but which provides the 
devotee of throwing not only with a recompense for the 
long period of preparation and training, but also with a 
unique and lasting satisfaction. 

There is a tendency nowadays to discuss athletics at 
what Mr. C. D. Broad calls the level of enlightened 
common sense that is to say, to accept and to apply the 
findings of modern knowledge in so far as they bear on 
the question at issue. In the case of the thrower the 
subject-matter is a human organism, usually in youth, 
and the mind animating it. Hence it is possible that 
the physiologist and the psychologist can contribute to an 
understanding of the act of throwing, and it is clear that 
no analysis of the act can be made except with the 
use of some of the simpler concepts of physics and 
dynamics. 

Since the motion of the limbs is brought about by the 
contraction of striated muscle tissue, the question at 
once arises as to whether the speed of contraction of 
muscle substance cannot, in suitable conditions, be 
increased, and thus, presumably, increase the thrower's 
efficiency. The answer of the physiologist is apparently 
this. The process of contraction of muscle tissue consists 
partly in a flow of the viscous cell contents and it is 
unlikely, in an organism such as man, which works at 
a nearly constant temperature, that the viscosity of the 
cell contents is appreciably susceptible of alteration. 
But the process is not so simple as this. It is by no 
means certain that great speed of muscular contraction 
is desirable for maximum efficiency, and indeed Professor 
A. V. Hill has shown that the realisable work performed 
by a muscle increases with the duration of the contrac- 
tion, ultimately reaching a steady level. In fact it has 
repeatedly been observed that the efficient athlete or 
games-player tends to exhibit smooth and apparently 
effortless movements, whereas the inferior performer 
can often be seen to display awkwardness and to give the 
impression of strain. It is clear then that the muscular 

272 



THROWING GENERAL 

contractions must not be unduly rapid for maximum 
efficiency to be attained. 

Now the human organism is a very complicated system 
of levers which are moved by the contraction of different 
groups of muscles. For the complete act of throwing 
any missile a considerable period of time must elapse and 
the different levers must move in the correct order and 
to the correct degree for the best result to be obtained. 
It is the maintaining of the correct order and extent of 
these contractions which is called muscular co-ordination 
and which is controlled by the nervous system. It is 
important in the highest degree that this co-ordination 
of muscle groups should attain such perfection as to be 
capable of performance without conscious effort on the 
part of the athlete, and this state of affairs can only be 
realised by constant practice. 

The reason for the necessity of attaining unconscious 
physical precision can be stated in the terms made use 
of by Dr. R. G. Gordon, from whose writings the 
following argument is derived. The body is animated by 
a mind which brings about an action by the following 
steps. It receives notification of external or internal 
stimuli, performs an act of volition called a conation, and 
sends to the motor apparatus an impulse which it judges 
is appropriate to the situation. In a complicated action 
such as that of throwing it is the building up of a 
suitable network .or pattern of neural paths in the brain 
which constitutes the ability to perform the skilled act 
in question, and it seems that the degree of skill attained 
depends directly upon the " firm organisation, facility 
and freedom from inhibitions possessed by the whole 
efferent tract to the final motor path." But the better 
organisation and facilitation of such neural patterns is 
brought about by their repeated use that is to say, by 
practice, and the importance of the process becoming 
automatic and unconscious is, it is probable, simply this. 
The attention is required during throwing for something 
else. For unless co-ordination, which is a convenient 
s 273 



ATHLETICS 

term for describing the above process, is well-nigh 
perfect and automatic, it will be necessary consciously 
to direct the attention to some part of the body, so to 
speak, watching the weak spot or correcting some 
known fault, whereas in making the supreme effort it 
is necessary that the undivided attention should be 
directed towards the act as a whole, not considered in 
isolation but in relation to some strong primary 
disposition or self-interest, such as aggression. 

It has often been noticed that when a competitor 
wishes to make a supreme effort his active attention, 
which is directed towards outdistancing some rival or 
exceeding a certain length of throw, inhibits the perfect 
performance of the act, causing a breakdown of co- 
ordination with its attendant poor result. Thus the 
greatest performers from the competitive point of view 
are those whose active attention can be centred entirely 
on the effort as a whole without disturbing the passive 
attention which is controlling the details of the physical 
movement. 

This vague and very incomplete account of the mental 
events which occur during throwing must be taken not 
as in any sense authoritative, but as an attempt to throw 
some light on the obscure question of the part played by 
the mind during the performance of a skilled act, the 
solution of which problem might very well lead to an 
increase in the efficiency of the thrower. 

There can be little doubt that constant practice has 
another effect besides that considered above, namely 
that of building up the particular muscle-groups required 
for the act of throwing. Unused muscle-tissue tends to 
atrophy or at least to lose its elasticity, but healthy muscle 
can be induced to grow by exercise. Whether the 
actual quality of healthy muscle, with regard to its 
capability of performing useful work, quite apart from 
the question of its efficient control, varies in different 
individuals is a point on which the physiologists do not 
seem to give any information at present, but the man in 

274 



THROWING GENERAL 

the street would probably give it as his opinion that such 
differences of quality do exist. It is not clear what the 
grounds for this belief are. 

The questions which await an answer are these. What 
kind of an organism is the successful athlete, how do 
his body and mind differ from an unsuccessful one, and 
what steps must be taken to ensure the development of 
the immature in the required direction ? It is im- 
probable that the state of knowledge at present will 
admit of a complete answer being given, and perhaps 
only the third part of the question has been attacked 
even along empirical lines. Here a certain measure of 
success has been attained in America and in the northern 
European countries, but it seems that no secret has been 
revealed and that the results which have been achieved 
have been due to the possibility of the learner copying 
the style of some more proficient and mature performer. 

With regard to the question of diet, it must be 
remembered that some theory of interaction of mind and 
body is commonly held. It is undoubtedly true that the 
young of the human species can adapt itself to any mixed 
diet in reason, and of very varying quantity, without 
sensible impairment of physical efficiency. At the same 
time athletes frequently hold that certain articles of diet 
are bad for training and that others are helpful. Proof 
of these assertions may quite well be lacking and indeed 
unobtainable, but there is little doubt that if eating a 
forbidden article or abstaining from one that is desired 
disturbs the peace of mind, it is much better to give in 
to what an external observer may consider a mere whim 
rather than to permit the presence of a disturbing mental 
factor to continue. There are fashions in diet for athletes 
from time to time and once a fashion has been established 
its observance may prove to be a profound solace to the 
athlete in training, while its infringement may affect his 
peace of mind adversely and through that his physical 
condition. 

Some general considerations on the question of learning 

275 



ATHLETICS 

the technique of throwing events are worth noting. All 
acts of throwing consist, from the point of view of 
mechanics, in imparting the maximum velocity to the 
missile at the moment when it leaves the thrower's hand. 
To do this a period of acceleration from rest occurs, 
during which the thrower so disposes his weight and so 
uses his muscles that this acceleration is always positive, 
It must also be smooth. The importance of the disposi- 
tion of the feet during throwing is generally recognised 
and, as in the playing of other games, is the key to success. 
Unless the performer has complete control of the placing 
of his feet the best results cannot be obtained. 

Another characteristic of the form of all good throwers 
is that at the moment of delivery the back is straight and 
the head erect. This shows that the powerful muscles 
of the trunk have contributed to the successful throw. 
But often a competitor can be seen who in his effort, as it 
were, to continue giving an impulse to the missile until 
the very last moment, allows his shoulders to come 
forward and his head to drop. This is due to a failure 
of co-ordination and indicates that the muscles of the 
trunk are being improperly used. 

At present there are not sufficient good performers 
in this country in the various events under consideration 
to provide examples of technique to all potential throwers, 
and it is not easy to see how the present generation can 
be given the opportunity of proficiency in throwing 
without a supply of experts upon whom they can model 
themselves. Hitherto each individual has been doomed 
to the wasteful method of trial and error, and as a result 
England has no first-class throwers. It is of vital 
importance that the young and eager athlete should see 
the event well done. He should be at close quarters 
with the expert and should be able to watch him carefully 
and to question him. This part is played in America by 
a highly paid official called the " coach," and the need 
of example is realised in Sweden also. 

There is one danger inherent in the slavish copying 

276 



THROWINGGENERAL 

of the form of any athlete, however good. He is certain 
to have idiosyncrasies, tricks of movement, which happen 
to suit him and sometimes in spite of which he performs 
well, but which perse contribute nothing to the efficiency 
of the thrower and may be totally unsuitable for the pupil. 
These individual tricks of movement, which are readily 
noticed by the onlooker, are very liable to be seized upon 
by the pupil as the important feature of the thrower's 
form which has given him his success. Such idiosyn- 
crasies are the particular movements of the left leg 
employed by a shot putter before he starts to move across 
the circle, the method of carrying out the preliminary 
swings with the hammer, or the details of the settling 
down process of the discus-thrower. What is necessary 
is to abstract what is common to all good performers in 
any particular event and to copy that rather than to 
concentrate on details of individual movement which 
are noticed particularly because of their very variability. 
In the succeeding pages an attempt will be made to stress 
only the essentials of form which are common to all good 
performers. 

There is one other factor which contributes greatly to 
success in throwing. It is ambition or the will to win. 
Unless an athlete is convinced of the " worthwhileness " 
of the performance of his event for some reason which 
seems to him good, and is prepared to spend much time, 
thought and often more money than he can well afford 
in achieving his aim, it is unlikely that he will ever be 
first-class. This fixity of purpose carries with it another 
activity which will take up much of his time, and which 
may be called athletic introspection. He will find him- 
self constantly thinking about the performance of his 
event, sometimes elated at his success and sometimes 
depressed at his defeat, but always turning his attention 
to acquiring that rhythm and deftness of movement 
without which big distances can never be attained. 

The performance of the act of throwing requires a 
missile of some kind, and the introduction of organised 

277 



ATHLETICS 

competitive throwing has resulted not only in the 
standardisation of the missile, but has also imposed 
restrictions on the thrower as to the method he may 
employ and the space in which he may perform his 
movements. The reason for this is clear. In competition 
it is necessary to measure the distance thrown, and for 
purposes of comparison the throw must take place 
either from behind a scratch line, in which case the 
length of the throw is taken as the perpendicular distance 
from this line to the point where the missile fell, or from 
a circle when the throw is measured radially. 

It is also necessary to standardise the weight and 
dimensions of the objects thrown and to prohibit the 
athlete from crossing the scratch line or coming out of 
the circle until it is certain that he has retained his 
balance after delivery of the implement. 

An attempt will now be made to describe the outward 
appearance of the movements of the best exponents of 
the different throwing events. Only essential movements 
will be stressed, and it must be remembered that the 
English language is very poorly equipped with words 
which can be used to communicate the sensations which 
accompany all movement. It seems to be true, however, 
than when an act of throwing is successfully carried out, 
when the thrower knows that he has done well without 
observing the flight of the missile or applying the 
measuring tape, there is accompanying that act a feeling 
of harmony, of effortless accomplishment, of adequate 
creation, which not only provides him then and there 
with a thrill of pleasure, but whose memory may well be 
one of his most valued possessions. 

Section 2. Shot Putt 

Exactly what constitutes a putt as distinct from a 
throw is a little difficult to determine. At any rate, 
throwing is forbidden. It is also impossible to throw a 
1 6-lb. shot as far as the best performers can project it by 
the permitted means. Either hand may be used, but 

278 



THROWING SHOT PUTT 

not both. The putt is made from a circle 7 feet in 
internal diameter, and at the front of the circle is a toe- 
board 4 inches high, covering about 120 degrees of arc. 
The athlete's foot may come against the inner surface of 
this board but he may not step on it. 

There are five main contributory motions which go 
to make up the complete act of shot putting, and it is 
essential that these should be welded together, each of 
due intensity and at the right time, for perfect form to be 
attained. They are these : the movement across the 
circle, the straightening of the legs and back, the turning 
of the trunk about a vertical axis, the shooting out of 
the putting arm and the final flick of the wrist and fingers. 

The athlete, who maybe considered to be right-handed, 
picks up the shot, usually in his left hand to avoid tiring 
the other one, and takes up a position on the inside of 
the circle remote from the toe-board and facing a 
direction at right angles to the intended line of flight 
of the shot. He then takes the weight of the shot in the 
region of the base of the first three fingers, and flexing 
the arm, holds the shot in position below the right ear. 
This contact with the neck helps to keep the shot quite 
steady during the movement across the circle. There 
are variations of this position whose merits are contro- 
versial. The actual process of putting now begins. The 
athlete settles the details of his position with regard to 
comfort and then uses the left leg, which he lifts from 
the ground, to initiate a sideways movement in the 
direction of the toe-board. At the same time the right 
leg is bent and the right shoulder is lowered (Fig. 3OA). 
The swing of the left leg and an impulse from the right 
foot carry the body across the circle, the thrower landing 
on the right foot (Figs. 308 and 3 1), which is placed near 
the centre of the circle and which is followed by the land- 
ing of the left foot in the neighbourhood of the toe-board 
(Figs. 3oc and 31). The right leg is still bent and right 
shoulder still lowered, but the thrower is passing through 
this position which is only momentary. 

279 



ATHLETICS 










FIG. 30. 




FIG. 31. 



THROWING HAMMER 

The next three movements occur in such rapid 
succession that it is difficult for the observer to say 
whether they are simultaneous or not. The slow-motion 
camera reveals the fact that 
the straightening of the 
legs and the swinging to 
the front of the shoulders, 
the back being straight and 
head erect, occur before 
the arm is extended to the 
front for the delivery of the 
shot (Fig. 300). The final 
impulse is given by a power- 
ful straightening of the 
hand in the line of pro- 
longation of the forearm 
(Fig. 3 OE). 

At this point a device is 
adopted for keeping the 

athlete inside the circle. This is commonly known as 
" the reverse," and consists in bringing up the right leg 
from the centre of the circle so that the outside of the 
foot strikes the vertical inside face of the toe-board while 
the left leg is swung backwards and upwards (Figs. 30? 
and 31). Throughout the whole movement the left 
arm is used for balancing the body and is disposed as 
individual requirements dictate. 

The greatest shot-putter of all time from the point of 
view of performance is J. Kuck of the United States, who 
won the event at the ninth Olympiad at Amsterdam, 
where he failed to produce his best form. He weighs 
about 1 5 stone and is stated to have put the 1 6-lb. shot 
56 feet in practice. His best performance in competition 
is about 52 feet. 

Section 3. Throwing the Hammer 

The hammer consists of a spherical weight attached 
by means of steel wire to a triangular handle, the total 

281 



ATHLETICS 

weight is not less than 16 Ibs., and the over-all length 
is not more than 4 feet. It is thrown from a circle of 
7 feet internal diameter, and the thrower usually swings 
the hammer three times round his head ; and then, 
himself turning two, three or four times within the 
circle and gradually increasing the speed at which the 
hammer is moving, releases the instrument to the best 
of his ability in a manner designed to give the maximum 
range of throw. 

The thrower takes up a position in the circle remote 
from and with his back to the intended direction of the 
throw, the feet being 1 2 to 1 8 inches apart. The hammer 
handle rests in the fingers of the left hand, which fingers 
are covered by those of the right hand. The hammer 
head rests on the ground to the right of the performer. 

In starting the throw the hammer head is raised from 
the ground and, without moving the feet, is swung round 
the head, slowly at first, but working up to an optimum 
velocity by the time the third swing is completed. It is 
very important that this preliminary swing should be 
smooth and that the thrower should retain complete 
control of his balance throughout. The only way to 
ensure that the optimum velocity has been reached by 
the end of the third swing is by trial and error, the 
correct performance of this part of the throw being 
accompanied by a muscular sensation which is subjec- 
tively recognisable but which is incommunicable in 
wor4s. 

The difficult part of hammer-throwing is to control 
body and hammer during the turns and to finish the 
turns with the feet so placed and the weight so disposed 
as to be able to impart a maximum impulse to the 
hammer at the moment of delivery. 

During the turns the hammer head can be considered 
to move in a plane inclined to the horizontal at angles 
varying between about 30 degrees and 60 degrees 
according to the particular style of the thrower. The 
actual path of the hammer head is, of course, three 

282 



THROWING HAMMER 

dimensional, but it is a convenient fiction to consider it 
to be moving on a plane surface inclined to the horizontal. 








FIG. 32. 

This is indicated in Figure 32. Thus, while the body 
rotates, the arms, which must be straight, rise and 

283 



ATHLETICS 

fall. The hammer head is within a few inches of the 
ground when the thrower's back is towards the direction 
of throwing and may be nearly 9 feet from the ground 
when he has rotated through 180 degrees. Each 
individual must discover for himself the correct inclina- 
tion of this hypothetical plane to the horizontal which 
suits his own particular style. 

Although the acceleration given to the hammer must 
be smooth it cannot be uniform, because during part of 

the turn its motion is 
assisted by the gravita- 
tional pull of the earth and 
during part of it there is 
opposition. It is during 
the fall of the hammer 
head that the acceleration 
is greatest, and during this 




FIG. 33. 



period the increase of 
tension can be felt in the 
fingers and must be 
counteracted by the correct 
disposition of body weight. 
There is thus a rhythmic 
and increasing feeling of 
tension which satisfies the 
thrower that acceleration is positive throughout the 
effort. 

It is now necessary to consider the footwork during 
the turns. All turning is about some point on the ball 
of the foot, and although during the process of throwing 
the performer's heel may come to the ground, no good 
performer actually rotates about his heel. The process 
consists of a rotation on the left foot, the right foot coming 
to the ground in a position slightly behind its former 
position. The left foot is then drawn back and the 
process repeated. In this way it is seen that during the 
turn there is progression across the circle, and it is 
possible that this small added velocity affects the distance 

284 



THROWING DISCUS 

thrown to a slight extent. Some notable Swedish 
throwers, however, have been observed -to dispense with 
this progression across the circle. 

The difficulty of controlling such an evolution is 
considerable, but unless the turns are finished with the 
body perfectly disposed for the act of delivery it is 
impossible to throw successfully. The delivery consists 
in planting the feet correctly and firmly on the ground, 
the tension on the arms being very considerable, and 
then by rising on the toes, straightening the legs and 
back, and sweeping the arms upwards and to the left, 
imparting added velocity to the hammer and at the same 
time ensuring the optimum angle of delivery, which is 
45 degrees. The whole action must be carried out 
smoothly, without any break or jerk, and if done 
correctly the thrower will remain stationary in the circle, 
his head turned to watch the flight of the hammer. 

The accompanying sensation at the moment of 
successful delivery is indescribable but is amazingly 
pleasant. There is no sense of strain or effort, although, 
of course, the effort has been considerable, but rather 
a sense of physical well-being and of the satisfaction of 
some inner need. 

The greatest hammer-throwers have all been Ameri- 
cans of Irish birth or descent. Fifteen stone is the 
minimum weight required. P. J. Ryan, who holds the 
world's record of 189 feet 6\ inches, is one of these and 
the other is F. D. Tootel, who won this event at the 
eighth Olympiad with a distance far below his capa- 
bilities. He is now a coach of athletics and is debarred 
from competing, but it is stated that he has repeatedly 
thrown over 200 feet. 

Section 4. Throwing the Discus 

The discus consists of a smooth metal rim attached to 
a wood body with brass plates set in the centre. The 
largest dimension is a circle not less than 81 inches in 

285 



ATHLETICS 

diameter, and the thickness in the centre is if inches. 
The sides taper to the rim, which is rounded on a true 
circle of inch diameter, and each side is a counterpart 
of the other. The weight of the discus is not less than 
4 Ibs. 6-4 ounces, and it is thrown from a circle whose 
interior diameter is 8 feet 2j inches. 

The discus is thrown with one hand and must be made 
to scale or fly flat through the air. This is effected by 
imparting spin with the fingers of the right hand, at the 
same time pressing down with the thumb to guide that 
part of the discus to which the thrower's force is not 
being immediately applied. This pressure of the thumb 
is of great importance and is not always mastered by 
comparatively experienced throwers. If it is neglected 
the discus will turn over and over in the air and the throw 
is wasted. 

The thrower takes up a position inside the circle 
remote from the direction of the throw and facing a line 
at right angles to it. The feet are about 1 8 inches apart. 
Some preliminary movements are made to ensure the 
stability and balance of the thrower, the details of which 
are personal and immaterial, but at the conclusion of 
them the thrower is holding the discus in his finger-tips 
with the throwing arm stretched as far back as is con- 
venient (Fig. 34A). This is to ensure the longest possible 
sweep of the arm in the actual throw, for it is only 
possible to execute one turn in the circle and the 
maximum velocity has to be attained in a very short 
time. 

All the movements should be exceedingly smooth apd 
the acceleration of the discus throughout the throw must 
be positive. During the turn the throwing arm rises 
and falls, giving the impression of definite wave motion 
in some throwers, but in others this is not so easily 
perceived. Since good results are obtained by either 
method it is probably unimportant which style is adopted, 
provided considerable velocity is imparted to the discus 
at the end of the turn and the thrower finds himself in 

286 



THROWING DISCUS 





ATHLETICS 

a position to deliver the discus correctly. The back of 
the hand is uppermost. 

The footwork is not difficult to learn. The first half 
of the turn is carried out on the ball of the left foot, 
which brings the right foot to the ground in front of it 
in the direction of the throw. The weight is now shifted 

to the right leg, and another 
half-turn is made on the 
ball of the right foot. This 
leaves the thrower with feet 
disposed as in the prelim- 
inary position, but he has 
moved across the circle in 
the direction of the throw. 
He has now to deliver 
the discus. This consists 
of two motions, and unless 
they are carried out in the 
correct order and welded 
together harmoniously it is 
impossible to throw with 
success. The turn must be finished with the weight 
of the .thrower so disposed that he can straighten 
his legs and back, throwing his chest forward, and 
maintain the tension on the discus which has been 
acquired during the turn. When his legs have 
straightened he feels that he is in a position to exert an 
added pull on the discus, the right leg particularly 
becoming a compression member. The final act of 
delivery now takes place. The right arm is swept upward 
and forward across the body, the discus leaving the hand 
quite smoothly and at an angle of about 30 degrees with 
the ground. Some throwers prefer a greater angle. 
The sensation accompanying successful delivery cannot 
well be expressed in words, but gives very great pleasure 
to the thrower. 

One of the greatest discus-throwers is C. Houser of 
the United States, who won this event in the eighth and 

288 




FIG. 35. 



THROWING JAVELIN 

ninth Olympic Games. He weighs about 14 stone. 
Like most American throwers he uses a somewhat flat 
trajectory for the discus. He is the holder of the world's 
record at about 158 feet.* In the Olympic Games of 
1928 his first two attempts were disallowed, but with 
his third throw, which was his last chance, he won the 
competition. 

Section 5. Throwing the Javelin 

The javelin is made of wood, is 8 feet 6 inches long, 
and must not weigh less than r6 Ibs. It must have a 
sharp iron or steel point and must be bound for 6-3 inches 
in the neighbourhood of the centre of gravity with 
whipcord, but there must be no other aid to holding it. 
It must be held at the binding, and the point of the 
javelin must touch the ground before any part of the 
shaft. It is thrown from behind a scratch line which 
must be at least 1 2 feet in length. 

If the hand is held palm upwards and a javelin is 
placed in it, the binding resting in the palm and the 
point of the javelin being on the same side of the hand 
as the little finger, the hand will naturally close on the 
binding in the correct manner for throwing. The thumb 
is directed along the shaft and the first finger, which is 
the chief throwing finger, rests against the edge of the 
binding. It is both unnecessary and tiring to grip the 
javelin tightly until the actual throw is made, when the 
first finger and thumb close tightly on the shaft while 
the remaining fingers relax their hold. 

The run-up is about 20 yards, and the thrower must 
attain a high degree of precision in it both as to speed 
and as to the placing of his feet. The method of holding 
the javelin during the run varies. Some first-class 
performers hold it horizontal with the hand close to the 
right ear, some hold it inclined downward with the 

* Note. H. Hoffmeister (Germany) has thrown 160 feet f inch, 
but this record has not yet been accepted by the I.A.A.F. 
T 289 



ATHLETICS 

point a foot or so from the ground, and some have the 
right arm fully extended backwards with the javelin 
lying along the arm. S. A. Lay of New Zealand, who 
has thrown 222 feet 9 inches, uses the last-named method. 

If either of the first two 

t methods is adopted the javelin 
__. _ . must.be drawn smoothly back 

to the full extent of the right 
arm by the time the side-step, 
which is preliminary to the 
throw, is made. 

The run-up should be 
smooth and of gradually 
increasing speed until -the 
side-step which immediately 
precedes the throw, when the 
right foot is turned to the 
right and the left is carried off 
to the left of the line of the 
run-up. At the same time the 
right shoulder is dropped by 
an inclination of the trunk. 

The throw consists of three 
movements. The arm is first 
bent so that the hand is 
1 brought to a position just 

1 behind and to the right of 

the right ear. The right 
FlG - 36. shoulder is then swung for- 

ward and the arm is straight- 
ened upwards and slightly forwards. The amazing 
speed with which these movements are carried out by 
the best javelin -throwers makes it difficult for an 
observer to analyse them, but two things are essential 
for success. The first is that the shoulder should be 
brought to the front before the arm is straightened, and 
the second is that the javelin should be held close to the 
head until the moment of straightening the arm. In 

290 



THROWING JAVELIN 






FIG. 37. 
291 



ATHLETICS 

order to keep the thrower behind the scratch line the 
feet are reversed that is to say, as soon as the javelin 
has left the hand the weight is shifted from the left leg 
to the right, which is brought in front of the body to 
check the forward movement. 

The whole movement, in spite of the speed at which 
it is carried out, can be performed with perfect smooth- 
ness, and in the best throws it is noticeable that the 
javelin itself shows no sign of whip or vibration. This 
description of the throw is almost word for word applic- 
able to throwing the cricket ball, the chief differences 
being the grip and the elevation given to the missile. It is 
certainly true that there are cases known of athletes who 
could throw the cricket ball well and who very soon 
showed considerable proficiency with the javelin. 

The holder of the world's record is E. H, Lundquist 
of Sweden, and the distance thrown was 232 feet nf 
inches. He was also the winner at the ninth Olympic 
Games with a throw of 2 1 8 feet 6 inches. This throw 
was the first of the competition. 



292 



CHAPTER XII 
WALKING 

WALKING races are held either on the road or 
on the track, the former being of greater 
antiquity. Despite its somewhat anomalous 
character for it is certainly curious to see a man racing 
at a speed which he could easily eclipse by employing a 
more natural mode of progression the sport has many 
patrons in England, America, Canada and certain 
continental countries, notably Italy and Denmark ; and 
it is undoubtedly a healthful though rigorous form of 
exercise. There has recently been a revival of interest 
in Germany ; and although the event was eliminated 
from the Olympic programme in 1928, owing to the 
difficulty of standardising methods of judging, it has been 
restored for 1932. 

Walking races are possibly more exacting than any 
other form of track athletics. Every muscle is subjected 
to continual strain on account of the style employed, with 
the locked knee and upright carriage. Fair walkers 
progress by means of what really amounts to a series of 
jerks, and the fatiguing nature of this scarcely requires 
emphasis. Evidently, therefore, the walker needs a 
severe course of training. 

Having in view the vigorous play of almost all the 
muscles in walking races there seems to be sound 
reason in the recommendation of experts to commence 
training with physical jerks, skipping, and exercises 
with light dumb-bells. The dumb-bells are used to 
develop and speed up the arm swing, which is so 
pronounced a feature of walking. 

2Q7 



ATHLETICS 

In the early stages of training, preferably on the road, 
half-speed work should be done, and the pace worked 
up gradually, no fast work being attempted for several 
weeks. A good swinging style is to be emulated. 

In good and fair walking the body carriage should 
be upright, or nearly so, the shoulders well back and 
the arms held well up in a bent position and swinging 
at .each stride with the movement of the legs well across 
the chest, which should be well out. The movement of 
the hips should be as free as possible, and at each stride 
they should suffer a slight twist round, so that the 
advancing leg is swung inwards and the feet consequently 
step almost in a direct line. This somewhat increases 
the length of stride and, of course, gives greater pace. 
The leg should be perfectly straight and the heel should 
reach the ground first. The arms should be brought 
right up and across the chest with a really powerful 
drive. The motion of the hand commences slightly to 
the rear of the hip and comes up across the body almost 
to touch the opposite shoulder. During the stride there 
is a very slight forward lean of the head and body, but 
at its conclusion they should be upright. 

The former definition of walking, " progression by 
steps so taken that the heel of the foremost foot must 
reach the ground before the toe of the other foot leaves 
it," embodied the principal feature of the leg action. 
Fair heel-and-toe striding demands that the leg which is 
carrying the weight shall not be bent in other words, 
that the moment the heel comes to the ground the knee 
of the leading leg is locked and the leg remains stiff until, 
after the completion of the stride, the toe is lifted again. 
The shuffling style whereby the knees of both legs are 
bent, and not merely that of the one which is in the air, 
is both ungainly and unfair ; and it is such an abuse of 
the sport which brings it into disrepute. 

As in long-distance running, the walker will be well 
advised to train for pace rather than distance. For one 
thing, in walking pace is exceptionally fatiguing ; for 

294 



WALKING 

another, it is less likely to induce staleness. Moreover, 
it is necessary to guard against slow walking ; always 
go at a sharp pace with a good arm swing. The two- 
miler should be content with I J-mile spins, varied with 
fast miles and half-miles ; the seven-miler with 4 or 5- 
mile jaunts, likewise interspersed with short, snappy 
walks. These distances are the championship events in 
England ; in America only the y-mile event is held. 
This does not, of course, mean that the full distance 
should never be covered ; as in running, it must be 
done once or twice as a test, unless one has a very 
reliable system of graduated races upon which to base 
his training. 

Road walking possesses the same features as track 
walking except that there is more jar and the methods 
of negotiating the hills have to be acquired. The 
general training resembles that of the Marathon runner, 
particularly for the long walks, such as, for example, the 
London to Brighton, promoted annually in September 
by the Surrey Walking Club. Care must be taken of the 
feet, which should be hardened so as to avoid soreness, 
and a strong shoe with a low heel is required. 

Just as in road running the training should be of 
gradually increasing severity, following a time and 
distance schedule. For really long walks a long swinging 
stride should be sought, with a lower carriage of the arms. 
Nothing but genuine walking pays in this type of 
contest, which is a most searching test of endurance ; 
consequently a good style, and no shambling, must be 
acquired if success is to be attained. The sport is 
controlled by the Road Walking Association. 



295 



CHAPTER XIII 
RELAY RACING 

RELAY racing is a subject of considerable 
interest and importance in any consideration of 
the future of athletics. Though the relay idea 
was formulated some seventeen years ago in this 
country (the first A.A.A. relay championship was held 
in 1911), it is only in the last eight or ten years, since 
the War, that it has to any marked degree come into its 
own. To-day, however, relay racing has become such 
a popular and such a universally practised branch of 
athletics that one realises it has in all probability an 
immense future before it, and it is by no means a wild 
dream to imagine the day when it will no longer be a 
" branch," but when athletics and relays will be two 
parallel sports of equal magnitude and importance. 
Taking this broadest view one includes, of course, under 
the heading " relays " the team events which allow of 
the system being extended to the field events and thus 
to encompass the whole athletic programme. A " team 
event " is one in which the rival teams are each 
represented by a stated number of men, whose aggregate 
effort shall decide the event. The relay system presum- 
ably finds its appeal because it provides adequately for 
the development of the " team spirit " in athletics, and 
thereby automatically tends to eradicate that too 
individualistic side of athletics which has been in the 
past the one big peg upon which critics, often rather 
unjustly, have hung their complaints. By allowing a 
relatively larger number of men to compete it serves to 
raise the general standard of athletics and caters more 

296 



RELAY RACING 

satisfactorily for the competitive requirements of the 
average and mediocre performer, whilst at the same time 
allowing the " stars " to shine with as much if not more 
brilliance than before. 

The origin, history and some idea of the scope of the 
relay movement is fully dealt with elsewhere (Chapters 
I and III), showing how from its initial home in America 
it has spread to be a world-wide concern, popular alike 
with competitor and spectator. 

It is an interesting fact, especially in view of the rather 
high-handed criticisms often levelled at American 
specialisation, that the relay events on any programme 
in the United States are those in which victory is most 
prized. America has many " all-relay " meetings 
some of them now world famous, such as the gigantic 
Pennsylvania Meeting, the Drake Relays, and the huge 
indoor meeting of the Illinois A.C. 

There are very few essential rules pertaining to relay 
racing. The various distances can be combined at will, 
though to-day the tendency is rather to run four similar 
distances. In passing it may be noted also that there is 
no necessity to limit the number of men per team to 
four, and in America particularly eight-men relay teams 
are comparatively common ; but the rules do make a 
point of the stipulation that no one man shall run more 
than one stage in any relay event. 

The chief ruling for any relay event is that at the 
completion of every stage of that particular event a line 
shall be drawn at right angles to the edge of the track, 
and two similar lines respectively 10 yards behind and 
10 yards in front of this original line. Within the 20 
yards thus marked out, the transference of the baton 
from one runner to the next must take place. The baton 
itself, which is a hollow cylinder of light wood, bamboo 
or other material, must, according to A.A.A. standards, 
weigh not less than if ounces, and be not more than 
i if inches long. 

The only rules beyond these are concerned with a 

297 



ATHLETICS 

special type of relay known as the " shuttle relay," used 
now almost exclusively for the hurdle events, though 
originally for the short sprints also. In this, two flights 
of hurdles (or two lanes, as the case may be) are required 
for each team, and the distances are run back and 
forward, the change-over being accomplished by a 
touch on the shoulder, which must take place within a 
marked yard behind the starting line at either end. 

There are many obvious objections to this method, 
but it has been found that in these events, where the men 
running two successive stages run into one another as 
it were, the changing by baton was highly impracticable. 

The usually accepted distances for relay events in this 
country are the 4 by i oo yards, 4 by 1 1 o yards, 4 by 
220 yards, 4 by 440 yards, 4 by 880 yards, 4 by I mile, 
4 by 120 yards hurdles and medley relay (440, 220, 
220, 880 yards), but longer distance relays and odd 
distance relays are quite a common feature on any 
programme to-day. 

The great charm of relay racing comes from the fact 
that besides giving just as much opportunity for a 
display of speed and athletic ability and for a demonstra- 
tion of track tactics as the ordinary event, it adds the 
difficult and consequently stimulating element of com- 
bination. The questions relative to the running of the 
various distances concerned in relay races have been 
fully dealt with in previous sections of this chapter. 
One or two small considerations, however, arise with 
regard to tactics, especially in the long-distance events. 
(In the sprints and hurdles, of course, it is simply a 
matter of " full speed ahead " from start to finish.) 
In these, the getting away fast perhaps even a little 
faster than usual is, when possible, all important, as it 
serves either to consolidate a lead previously gained or 
to establish one, or, on the other hand, to cut down a 
deficit, in any case acting as a stimulant to one's morale 
and a depressant to one's opponents. Having made 
this initial spurt, of perhaps up to 50 yards, the relay 

298 



RELAY RACING 

runner must settle down to complete the rest of his race 
at the maximum pace at which he is capable of fully 
running out the distance concerned. To do this requires 
a knowledge and judgment of pace both in himself 
and his rival which only really comes after extensive 
experience in this form of running. 

The only part that really comes into the practical 
politics of this section is that concerned with those 
20 yards in which the baton must change from hand to 
hand. 

Perhaps this statement needs slight modification in 
that a few words are due, first, to the original start of any 
relay and, secondly, to the question of running relays in 
lanes. 

With regard to the start, since the " crouch " has now 
become almost universal even to the extent of applying 
to half-milers, one must consider how this is to be 
accomplished with the baton. For a successful start, the 
essence of which is coming straight out of the " holes, " 
it is necessary that the starter should be perfectly 
balanced on his mark. To effect this with a baton in one 
hand requires practice, and the best method is probably 
to tuck the baton in between the thumb and index finger, 
and if to hold it there necessitates any difference from the 
usual position of one's fingers, to be sure that the other 
hand is made to correspond. For those who start with 
their knuckles (middle joint of the fingers) on the mark, 
the problem is somewhat easier, as the baton then comes 
to lie automatically in the palm of the hand. Which 
hand, depends upon the method of change-over used, 
but it is usually the left, the baton then being correctly 
placed from the start for the change to the following 
man's right hand. 

One point, already stressed above with regard to 
the start, and that experience has shown to be of great 
value, is that it always pays, even in the longer distances, 
to establish a lead from the gun ! Particularly is this so 
in relays not run in lanes and in the shorter distances. 

299 



ATHLETICS 

With regard to the lane question, in distances of up 
to a quarter of a mile at any rate, it is almost essential to 
the production of a fair race to run it in lanes. Since 
this necessitates the runner in the lane farthest from 
the pole starting relatively ahead of his opponents, i.e. 
en tchelon, it demands from a runner a considerable 
capacity for judgment of pace, and from the spectator 
judgment of distance. For distances beyond the quarter- 
mile and after the first quarter of a 4 x 440 yards relay, 
lanes are really both impracticable and unnecessary. 
The stations once drawn for at the start of any relay must 
be maintained throughout the race, except when the 
distances between the runners are so great that there 
is no possibility of interfering with one another, when 
courtesy admits of the change being made on the 
pole. 

And now, with regard to that all-essential change, 
proficiency is only possible with much practice and per- 
severance. Nevertheless it is well worth all the effort put 
into it, for a bad change-over may mean the loss of 
anything up to 5 yards, whereas good changing by an 
average team will make them easily victorious over a 
vastly superior quartette whose changing is poor. The 
essential aim in this matter is to effect the change of 
baton from hand to hand with the least possible loss of 
time. The methods will therefore automatically vary 
according to the distance being run. For long distances, 
where presumably the " giver " will be well-nigh 
exhausted at the end of his stage, the responsibility for 
the exchange lies with the " receiver," who should wait 
for the- baton on the back line, i.e. i o yards behind the 
real starting line. In other words, the receiver uses the 
old standing start with the left foot in front and the body 
weight on it, the right foot being to the rear and to the 
right, to give the requisite balance. This, in principle, 
applies also to the quarter-miles, but for really fit and 
fast quarter-milers and for the shorter distances many 
more problems enter into the question. The receiver 

300 



RELAY RACING 

must now be on the move, in fact as much as possible 
on the move when he takes the baton. In other words, 
the change-over should actually occur as near the 
farther lo-yard line as is possible, at which point the 
receiver should have gained the maximum speed 
possible in the 20 yards allowed. This will not, of 
course, be his full speed, which takes some 30 to 40 
yards to attain. (The leading pair in Fig, 38 will have 
effected their change well up to the front line, that shown 




FIG. 38. 

being the centre line.) To accomplish this satisfactorily 
needs considerable practice between the two men con- 
cerned, until the receiver gets to know just that point 
at which, when it is reached by the giver (usually some 
6 to 10 yards behind the back line), he must start to run. 
From that moment he must not look back (good and bad 
form being shown respectively by the two pairs in 
Fig. 38), the responsibility for the actual change in 
short-distance relays lying with the giver. The latter 
must run right through his distance even after the 
exchange has taken place, to prevent his fouling other 
competitors. He effects the exchange by exaggerating 

301 



ATHLETICS 

his forward lean and by a thrust and reach movement, 
and he must not relinquish his hold on the baton until 
certain that the receiver has a grip of it. The change, as 
has been stated, is usually from giver's left hand to 
receiver's right (back pair in Fig. 38), but this is by 
no means a universal rule (vide front pair in Fig. 38), 
and there are coaches in U.S.A. who train their men 
to alternate right to left and left to right changes, 
to obviate the change of baton from one hand to the 
other which the second and third men must make during 
their running if the same method is practised throughout. 
This latter is, however, the usual course, and it necessi- 
tates the second and third receivers changing the baton 
from the right hand into which they have received it to 
the left. This change should be made immediately, as 
it is much less likely to upset the running at this stage 
than at the end of a race when form tends to go somewhat, 
and also it is less likely to be knocked out of the left hand 
inadvertently by anyone passing. There only remains 
now for consideration the position of the receiver's hand. 
Several methods are advocated (two are exemplified in 
Fig. 38) the one in most general use being that of 
the giver bringing the baton up into the turned-down 
palm of the receiver (vide back couple in Fig. 38). 
The latter holds his arm extended and as steady as 
possible, with the palm down and the thumb pointing 
towards the body. An alternative is to have the palm 
turned up (Fig. 39), with the thumb still pointing 
inwards, when the baton is brought down into it. The 
third common method particularly employed by sprinters 
is shown by the leading pair in the illustration he 
" cup " method, in which the receiver's hand is held in 
the form of a cup against his hip, and into this cup the 
baton is placed. The disadvantage of this method is 
that it is difficult for the receiver to get an immediate 
firm grip on the baton and to get rapidly into his normal 
arm action. 

The giver in any method must attempt to hold the 

302 



RELAY RACING 

baton short (vide Fig. 39), to leave as much of its 
length as possible to place in the receiver's hand. 

One further matter needs discussion with regard to 
relays, namely the order in which a quartette of men 
should be run. In passing, it may be noted that the 
rules forbid any change in the actual composition of a 
relay team between heats and final. This order is a 
matter of no slight importance, and one which calls 
for considerable knowledge and experience on the part 
of the coach or captain of the team. It depends, of 
course, essentially on the individuals comprising the 




FIG. 39. 

team, their respective merits and peculiarities, and the 
amount of their previous competition on the day of the 
race, besides, perhaps, varying with the composition of 
the rival team. But, generally speaking, the plan adopted 
is that the best of the four runs last, the second best, 
especially if he be a good starter, first, and the weakest 
of the quartette, second. Whatever the order decided 
upon, it should be adhered to for as long as possible 
previous to a race, to allow of satisfactory practice in 
baton changing between the pairs concerned. 

All sorts of alternatives to this order are, of course, 
possible. For instance, it is a common practice with the 
German sprint relay runners to put their best man third, 

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ATHLETICS 

on the grounds that this stage is often the weak spot in 
the adversaries' armour, and that here the crack sprinter 
stands such a relatively greater chance of producing a 
position with which his comparatively weaker brother 
in the final stage can quite adequately cope. But, again, 
there are those who maintain that the third stage should 
be the property of the worst of a quartette, in that by 
then his two better predecessors have had ample 
opportunity to establish a lead if they are going to a 
lead which it is easier for him to maintain than to manu- 
facture. This is particularly the case in a race in 
which the first stage is run in lanes (e.g. 4 x 440 yards), 
and it is only when the second men run " free " that the 
battle for premier positions becomes acute. We have 
heard yet another famous runner express the opinion that 
the best thing to do with one's weakest man is to run him 
first and " get it over." 

Finally, in view of the discussion that has arisen from 
the fact that in the medley relay the Americans run the 
half-mile last, and we in England place it first, it seems 
only fair to give an opinion on the question. We feel 
that the American system is immensely superior, in 
fact is the only rational one, for as the race is so often 
run in England with the half-mile first, by the time 
that this stage is over nine times out of ten the race is 
also, for it is humanly impossible for even the best 
sprinters to wipe out the lead of 15 or 20 yards or more 
which a good half-miler on the opposing side might 
easily produce. And it must be remembered that such 
a lead represents about i^ to 2 seconds at the end of a 
half-mile. This, together with the first sprinter's flying 
start, will mean a lead of 20-25 yards before the second 
sprinter receives his baton, and this, of course, makes the 
whole thing from then on a farce. On the other hand, 
by running the half-mile stage last, interest is maintained 
up to the end, and the chances for the mediocre half- 
miler of making a good finish materially enhanced. 

304 



CHAPTER XIV 
TUG-OF-WAR 

THE tug-of-war is a heavy-weight event which, at 
the present time, has a very small following. It 
occurs in comparatively few athletic programmes 
to-day, though two tugs-of-war still remain amongst 
the A.A.A. championships. It was an Olympic event 
in the 1908, 1912 and 1920 Olympiads, but has been 
dropped since from the Olympic programme. Though 
there is a certain amount of technique in the event, it is 
largely a matter of brute force, and that, perhaps, is why 
in these scientific days it has lost much of its appeal. 

It consists of two teams, usually of eight men aside, 
pulling against one another on the same rope. The teams 
may consist of men with a stipulated aggregate weight, 
or the event may be " catch-weight/* i.e. " open." The 
A.A.A. rulings insist on a minimum age limit of seven- 
teen years ! The rope must be of not less than 4 inches 
in circumference and 35 yards in length. It must have 
no knots in it and must be held by the contestants by 
a plain grip, except in the case of the " anchor," or man 
farthest from the middle of the rope, who is allowed to 
throw it once over his shoulder. In the middle of the 
rope is tied a distinctive tape, and similar tapes are fixed 
6 feet on either side of this, whilst corresponding lines 
at similar distances to these three tapes are drawn on 
the ground at right angles to the line of pull. The event 
is decided by two pulls out of three, a winning pull being 
that in which the victorious team has pulled the tape 
mark farthest from it over the ground line nearest to it. 
Each team in a tug-of-war is allowed one coach, who 
v 305 



ATHLETICS 

is in many ways the most important man of the side, 
for, apart from the actual training of his men in the 
details of technique, he figures largely on the field of 
battle, and it is he who must use his judgment and 
experience to know just when to direct his men to give 
a steady pull or to make the great effort at the critical 
moment. 



306 



CHAPTER XV 

ATHLETICS FOR WOMEN AND BOYS 

Section I. Athletics for Women 

THE subject of athletics for women is one which 
it is advisable to approach with a completely 
open mind, not so much because one has not 
by now formulated more or less definite opinions 
upon this, perhaps rather unfortunately, controversial 
question, but rather because it is as yet experimental 
ground. 

So may what is written here be taken as it is meant, 
as an honest attempt at a broad-minded outlook on a 
subject whose particular claim to attention to-day is its 
novelty. For as a sport, athletics for women is practi- 
cally a post- War innovation just a ten-year-old child. 
And as such it seems very unjust to level wholesale 
criticisms at it before it has been given a really fair 
opportunity to prove itself in the world of sport, an 
opportunity which it appears to accept with renewed 
vigour as each successive athletic season comes along. 
When it has reached a riper maturity, when it is old 
enough to afford sufficient data from which to draw 
rational conclusions, then, and not till then, will it be 
possible to judge whether the promise of the " child " 
of to-day has become justified by the " adult " of to- 
morrow. And this " to-morrow " will not yet be for a 
considerable number of years. 

Meanwhile, one can only study with interest the pros 
and cons of the situation from the light of present-day 
knowledge. This discussion is no longer one as to whether 
women shall participate in athletics or not they do! 

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ATHLETICS 

And they give every evidence of continuing to do so 
with ever-increasing success. Athletic meetings for 
women and women's events in open meetings are 
common occurrences to-day, not only in this country, 
but, generally speaking, all over the world, whilst both 
national and international organisations for the manage- 
ment of this particular branch of the sport abound ; and 
it -must be said that these organisations show an efficiency 
and a keenness which presage well for the future 
development and success of women's athletics, 

It is a flourishing sport now, and bids fair to grow 
to considerably larger proportions within the coming 
few years. Hence its importance in any consideration 
of the athletic world to-day. 

First and foremost let us dispose of a myth which, 
though unfortunately it appears to find credit in certain 
quarters amongst the general public, we feel sure would 
be scorned by any woman interested either actively or 
passively in women's athletics, namely the suggestion 
that the ultimate aim and object of the sport is equality 
with men. This, of course, is perhaps just an exceedingly 
remote possibility, but so remote as to be almost 
ridiculous in any consideration of present-day athletics. 
Women athletes are bound to emulate their male 
counterparts, to learn from and copy style and methods 
evolved long before any venturesome Eve appeared upon 
the track, but it will always be with the idea of approach- 
ing perfection at their own relative standard. For 
instance, greatly as one gdmires the woman who, in 
competition with her fellows, records under 1 2 seconds 
for the 100 yards or jumps over 5 feet high, in competi- 
tion with a male " even-time " sprinter or a man who 
jumps 6 feet she would appear simply ludicrous. In 
other words, though, judging by the interest and 
enthusiasm displayed alike by competitors and spectators, 
there is little doubt that women's athletics has established 
a definite place for itself in the world of sport, it should 
remain a separate entity, for it is certainly self-sufficient 

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ATHLETICS FOR WOMEN 

for many a good year yet, and may it long continue so 
to be. 

The question of the inclusion of women's events 
in sports meetings, hitherto exclusively male, is really 
of very minor importance. The Olympic Games 
authorities, after a preliminary experiment in 1928, 
have decided to retain women's events in the next 
Olympic programme in fact have increased their total 
participation by one extra event. And in many ways 
this international decision seems to form a very wise 
example to national and more local organisations. If 
athletics for women is to progress and to do good, it must 
be allowed reasonable room for expansion ; and until such 
time as it is more established, it is only right that long- 
established athletic organisations should give it a fair 
chance to air its difficulties and advertise its successes 
by placing reasonable facilities for competition at its 
disposal. Naturally, on the basis stated above (that 
women's athletics should be an individual branch of the 
sport), the object to be aimed at is meetings composed 
entirely of women's events quite a number of which, 
incidentally, are already in existence in this country, as, 
for example, the Women's Annual Championships. But 
until such time as the British public, who, after all, are, 
taken all round, very good judges of the merits of any 
particular branch of sport, have learnt to appreciate 
something further than the novelty of these events, it 
is only fair that they should be catered for to some 
extent at least by sports organising bodies. 

Having, then, allotted to women's athletics a definite 
but separate place in the category of recognised games, 
one can proceed to a consideration of its relative merits 
and demerits as a sport for women. 

This, of course, almost automatically involves a 
comparison with men, because their's is the existing 
standard on which one bases one's deductions or 
decisions. Provided, however, that one recognises 
throughout the opinion stressed above, that women's 

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ATHLETICS 

athletics are essentially women's exclusive property, then 
the comparison serves only as an instructive means to 
an end. 

Are there any valid reasons for objecting to athletics 
for women ? And, again, are there any advantages 
accruing to women from participation in the sport ? 

It has been pointed out in a previous section of this 
book that good in athletics as a sport can be derived in 
three directions : as a body-builder, as a mind- 
strengthener, and as a character-former. Is there any- 
thing in a woman's make-up to prevent her taking full 
advantage of these ? 

Physically, perhaps, she is actually not so well 
equipped as a man for the sudden strains or the continued 
output of energy demanded by participation in athletics. 
She has smaller bones ; her weight, though on the 
average less, is relatively more adipose and less muscular 
tissue, and that muscular tissue is not so well adapted, 
particularly in the pelvis, to withstand the effects of 
repeated forced effort. Her heart and lungs have a 
relatively smaller capacity for work particularly if this 
latter is prolonged ; her blood carries less red-blood 
corpuscles and, therefore, supplies relatively less of the 
vitalising oxygen which is essential for the production 
of energy in the muscles. And those peculiar glands, 
the endocrine glands or glands of internal secretion, and 
in particular the thyroid and adrenal glands, function to 
a proportionately greater extent in women, to the end 
that they have a higher output of nervous energy and, 
consequently, a relatively smaller production of physical 
energy. 

Such are a few of the more important points of differ- 
ence, but does the fact that woman is apparently not so 
well equipped as man for physical exertion, as typified 
by athletics, mean that she is not sufficiently well 
equipped ? Surely not, if all the time it is remembered 
she is striving but to reach a definite female standard of 
excellence. One has but to consider the multitude of 

310 



ATHLETICS FOR WOMEN 

other sports in which woman now takes her part to 
appreciate the fact that athletics is far more likely to do 
more good and less harm than quite a number of them. 
Women row, they swim, they ski for miles, they play 
very strenuous tennis, they even play football ! and it 
must surely be admitted there are very few things in 
athletics they can do, the sheer physical effort of which 
is greater than any of these. 

Actually it seems not at all unreasonable to suggest 
that athletics in moderation will have a tendency towards 
improving this relative deficit in woman's physical assets. 
The healthy physical exercise contingent upon any 
active participation in both training for and competing in 
athletic events may surely do much towards the produc- 
tion of a generally more efficient body. The human body, 
be it male or female, requires exercise to stimulate its 
various physiological functions and to assist it to get 
rid of its inevitable waste products, and athletics appear 
to be a very reasonable medium through which this 
necessary exercise may be obtained. Running and 
jumping, always provided they are not practised to 
excess, must help to build up a firmer, stronger, more 
efficient muscular system. They would tend to alter 
the fat-muscle ratio in favour of the latter a point 
which obviously is not without its cosmetic appeal to 
the feminine mind ! By a gradual process of training, 
the heart and lungs would develop a correspondingly 
increased capacity for work, and it would be interesting 
to know whether nature, with her almost infinite 
capacity for adjustment to environment, would not also 
compensate the various increased demands of the other 
systems by increasing the oxygen-carrying power of the 
blood with a greater number of corpuscles. 

The question of the thyroid and adrenal glands is 
rather another matter. In the first place these glands, 
which on the average are relatively larger in women 
than in men, are responsible by their activity for a 
generalised speeding-up of all the essential functions of 

3 11 



ATHLETICS 

the body, and as one of the chief stimuli to activity is 
intimately related to any condition of nervousness, it is 
easy to see how the nervous strain incidental to any 
competitive effort may be responsible for an over-activity 
of bodily functions, leading, if persisted in, to what is 
virtually a neurasthenic state. The degree to which 
this effect becomes noticeable, of course, varies con- 
siderably with the individual, but it is undoubtedly a 
point of considerable interest, and one well worth 
further investigation. 

From the physical point of view there remain only 
those questions relative to women's own particular 
functions, and it is especially with regard to the effect 
of athletics on the future generations yet unborn that 
many possibly somewhat pessimistic critics have levelled 
disparaging remarks. Nature has seen fit to make 
women subject to a series of periodic attacks of being 
" off-colour " during those years which would normally 
include all their athletic life, and one can be quite 
definite in stating that at these times the practice of 
athletics in any form is bad. And this raises a difficult 
and interesting point, particularly well exemplified in the 
last Olympic Games (1928), when women athletes who 
had travelled some of them thousands of miles for one 
particular day's competition found themselves inevitably 
unfit to produce anything like their best performances. 
It is a difficulty, of course, for which there is no solution, 
but it is one that needs must be considered in any 
genuine appreciation of a particular woman athlete's 
ability. 

With regard to the question of the effect of athletics 
on the future mothers of the race, though this can only 
be fairly and accurately answered in the fullness of 
time, there seems to be but one point that needs em- 
phasising, namely moderation. Athletics as a medium 
through which good healthy exercise can be obtained 
has everything to recommend it, provided always that 
the effort involved in participation in any particular 

312 



ATHLETICS FOR WOMEN 

branch of the sport is never made to excess, to the degree 
when the effort becomes a strain. For woman's muscular 
system is so constructed that it is not adaptable to 
excessive strain, particularly if the productive force be 
applied suddenly. There are also those who contend 
that the various jumps, and even hurdling, are bad for 
women because of the jarring consequent on the necessary 
movements involved. Personally one feels inclined to 
the view that nature will automatically obviate any such 
grievous result by limiting the maximum capable of 
being produced by the female muscular system. 

Thus, summing up from the purely physical point of 
view, there honestly seems little valid reason why women 
should not enjoy the benefits that can be derived from 
athletics, if it is indulged in on a sound common-sense 
basis. If, however, there is a reasonable limit of effort 
beyond which, for a woman, the sport becomes a 
potential danger, should women's athletics be relatively 
restricted to a definite series of events ? At present there 
are few events, except, perhaps, the longest distances, 
which they are not essaying, and a woman has attempted 
to run a non-stop Marathon distance of some 26 miles. 

In this respect it is of interest to record the events 
allotted to women at Amsterdam. These were : 100 
metres, 800 metres, 4 by 100 metres relay, discus 
throw, and high jump. After observing that initial 
experiment, the powers-that-be on the International 
Amateur Athletic Federation, while deciding to con- 
tinue women's participation in the Olympic Games, 
-altered their programme to the extent of substituting 
for the 800 metres an 80 metres hurdle race, and 
adding an extra event in the javelin throw. The 
antipathy to the 800 metres race arose from what 
one is inclined to think was the perfectly natural 
exhaustion exhibited by many of the competitors. But, 
nevertheless, one is inclined to agree with the policy 
that restricts women's competitions to the shorter 
distances, with, for example, a maximum of a quarter- 

313 



ATHLETICS 

mile, and to those field events where style and technique 
rather than strength are the important factors i.e. the 
jumps and the javelin rather than the discus and the shot 
putt. And this view we put forward despite the facts that 
the Women's International Federation permits races up 
to 1000 metres, and that some hold the opinion that the 
short spasm of rapid running is much more of an effort 
than the running of a longer distance at a slower pace. 

With regard to the mental effect of participation in 
athletics on women, one must bear in mind their 
generally more highly-strung nervous system and the 
effect upon this of the excitement and strain of competi- 
tion, a matter intimately related to the functions of the 
various endocrine glands as mentioned above. The 
really highly-strung girl probably derives little benefit 
from any athletics, as the good she gets from any physical 
improvement is dispersed by the nervous strain resulting 
from her neurasthenic mental make-up. 

On the other hand, there is nothing to prevent an 
average healthy girl from acquiring all the mental assets 
the sport can give her control, perseverance, patience, 
interest and ambition. In some of these respects she is 
particularly receptive, on the average much more so than 
men. For instance, a woman is an innate stylist she 
enjoys paying what might to many seem wearisome and 
tedious attention to the minute details of form, and her 
meticulous care in this direction is largely responsible 
for the very rapid strides in the right direction which 
women's athletics has made in recent years. 

Another good thing accomplished is the recognition 
of the genus " sportswoman/' Looking back, one can 
recall during school years the playing of games in which 
girls perhaps participated on sufferance, and in which 
there frequently occurred, following some quite uncon- 
scious but nevertheless equally heinous misdemeanour, 
such remarks as " Oh ! it doesn't matter ; she's only 
a girl ; she doesn't understand." That now is definitely 
not the case, A girl is brought up in such an atmosphere 



ATHLETICS FOR WOMEN 

that she is as fully appreciative of the inherent value of 
the title " a sport " as is any boy, and not a little of this 
appreciation comes from the lessons of the athletic track, 
gleaned either from the experience of personal participa- 
tion or from that of her teachers lessons which have 
taught her how to play the game as an individual 
against the other individual who is her rival. 

So far, it may be felt, we have rather held a brief for 
women's athletics, so, if only to justify our initial claim 
to a broad-minded view of the question, may we consider 
a few points of possible objection, not so much with the 
idea of these being anything of a deterrent to the 
movement, but rather as food for thought. 

At heart, men like women to be essentially womanly, 
they like their feminine airs and graces, they like their 
weakness. And it seems a very moot point as to 
whether, generally speaking, this liking is enhanced by 
the sight of their womenfolk indulging in somewhat 
violent effort, garbed in peculiarly masculine garments. 

Again, we do not pretend to pose as beauty specialists, 
but whether athletics with their attendant increased 
muscular development is going to improve the grace of 
the female figure is a point which surely it behoves the 
woman athlete to consider seriously. And yet again, 
whilst completely dissociating ourselves from any 
prudish principles, is not the aesthetic effect of the girl 
athlete in the hands of the male trainer and the male 
masseur a situation almost inevitable in the present 
stage of development of the sport rather poor ? 

This is really neither simply an expression of a 
Victorian trend of thought, nor yet a merely selfishly 
male outlook, for the matter is actually a very serious 
one, and goes much deeper than the mere superficialities 
of appearances. We, as men, are brought up to have a 
very deep-rooted sense of appreciation of woman. And 
it is really more than appreciative, it is respectful, not 
so much of her beauty, her purity, or her idealism, but 
rather for the composite sum of all those attributes 

3*5 



ATHLETICS 

which are so exclusively women's property her femin- 
inity. Simply by the possession of this intangible 
quality she exercises a prerogative amongst us which 
should be most jealously guarded. This is the basis of 
the conception of chivalry, and however prone we are 
to eulogise what, so often to cover faults, obvious and 
otherwise, we lightly call the modern equality between 
the sexes, it is hard to believe that any of us would 
willingly see the passing of what little the conditions of 
to-day have still left us of the noble age of chivalry. For 
the ideal is admittedly already to some extent sullied, as, 
for instance, is only too painfully evident in any tube 
train during " rush hours, " and it should be a matter of 
the highest importance for those in whose hands the 
control of women's athletics lies to consider whether 
participation will not tend, in the long run, though 
perhaps at first almost imperceptibly, to lessen the respect 
in which woman is held by man. One tends rather to 
picture woman as a devotee of the finer arts and in all 
ages she was the inspiration productive of the world's 
greatest efforts in sculpture, in verse and in painting 
as playing by nature a passive part in the sterner and 
harder battles of life ; as indicative of the peace, the 
gentleness, the love in this world of ours ; and, above all, 
as embodying the ideals of the most perfect function of 
the human body, motherhood, 

We do not wish nor do we intend to stress this 
aspect unduly, but one does feel that much of the 
undeniable antipathy which exists towards the idea of 
women's athletics is based, not so much upon any 
material objection that can be raised, but upon a deeply 
ingrained belief that the sport may threaten not only the 
nature but the very existence of those illusive, ephemeral, 
but ever beautiful ideals of time immemorial which are 
probably along with those of honour and of truth 
the finest conceptions of which the human mind is 
capable. 

However, one recognises that these are possibly not the 

316 



ATHLETICS FOR BOYS 

average thoughts of the average day in this enlightened 
age, and if man's attitude towards woman, combined 
with the forced, artificial and still somewhat abnormal 
conditions .of the present post- War era, have allowed 
woman to set her foot on a rather headlong path, we 
must not be surprised that part of that path coincides 
with the cinder track. 

But, nevertheless, even should women athletes decide 
to shoulder the responsibility for neglect of any such 
considerations as the above, they must, because of these 
considerations, be prepared to weather what we feel will 
be a rather long period during which apart from the 
element of curiosity their participation in athletics will 
not meet with universal favour. 

However, though one in all fairness admits that these 
points are of definite importance, particularly from the 
male point of view, if women's athletics progresses on 
the lines and at the rate of to-day it will not be long 
before it finds a very definite place in the world of sport, 
a place in which it can be a very distinct power for good. 

There is much yet to be learnt, there is much that 
cannot yet be decided, but one feels that if the sport is 
always kept as their own particular concern, and limited 
to the extent that is compatible with their physical 
and mental equipment, then women will find in it much 
of advantage to themselves, whilst at the same time being 
an undoubted credit to the finest principles of the 
" game." 

Section 2. Athletics for Boys 

In this world of ours to-day, where life is relatively a 
much more hectic business than it was a generation or 
two ago, where men, to be successful, must be just as 
well equipped in every respect as is possible on the basis 
of their hereditary attributes, it is becoming more and 
more essential that a boy's training should be as 
comprehensive as the knowledge and experience of those 
in whose hands it lies can make it. 

317 



ATHLETICS 

And it is becoming ever more widely recognised by 
both parents and school authorities alike that athletics 
offers a field for supplying a very vital part of this 
training, unsurpassed by any other sport and, taking a 
very broad view, one might almost venture to say, even 
by the schoolroom itself ! 

Running has an unquestionable appeal to every boy. 
The first thing he does after learning to walk is to learn 
to run. And probably the first competitive effort he 
ever makes in his life is in a running race. In this 
respect running may be said to be almost born and bred 
in a boy, and though of later years various other sports 
have somewhat usurped the place of athletics in popu- 
larity, it is of considerable interest to note that as a sport 
in schools it has not only continued as a staple product, 
as an integral part of any curriculum, but has recently 
shown a most encouraging recrudescence indicative of 
its appeal to the average boy. One school may specialise 
in " rugger, " another in " soccer " ; one may turn out 
oarsmen, another tennis players, or swimmers or golfers ; 
but one and all, probably without exception, hold their 
annual athletic sports function. 

This fact alone must serve to show the universal 
acceptance of the sport as a highly important factor in a 
boy's training. It serves such an all-round purpose; it 
produces that gradual physical development which, by 
building up a sound constitution, gives the boy the right 
physical basis for the rest of his life ; it teaches him to 
use his brain and stimulates his budding mental faculties ; 
and, perhaps most important of all, it helps to form his 
character in the right way by showing him the essential 
value of self-discipline and self-control, of patience and 
of perseverance, and by teaching him the intrinsic 
meaning of that all-encompassing word " sportsman." 

At all costs for boys athletics must be taught and must 
be looked upon as essentially a " game," played not for 
any material reward, not even for the kudos resulting 
from it, but just plainly and simply for the game's sake. 

3*8 



ATHLETICS FOR BOYS 

One should attempt always to emphasise the fact that 
to be considered a " real sport " by one's fellows is 
actually the best prize of all. And most boys are at 
heart natural sportsmen. It is only various unfortunate 
conditions which have grown up in the majority of 
schools that in any way jeopardise, if only to a superficial 
extent, the mass production in our schools of boys 
inculcated with all the truest and finest ideals of sport. 
One refers in particular to the existence of extensive 
prize-lists, and to the " Victor Ludorum " principle. 

With regard to the former, the thing one wants most 
to avoid with boys is any tendency to " pot-hunting." 
The system of challenge cups, held for a definite period, 
and if possible retained somewhere in the school, has 
everything to recommend it. Beyond this the prize-list 
should be reduced to a minimum. A boy should be 
educated up to wanting to win a race for the sake of 
winning it, not for the sake of the cup or medal attached 
to tjie victory. 

As for the " Victor Ludorum " question, one can but 
hope that with the wider knowledge and experience now 
prevalent amongst teachers, and, one hopes, amongst boys 
too, the competition for this title will slowly but surely 
disappear. Presumably it originated in a desire to re- 
cognise the ability of the " all-round " athlete, and, whilst 
holding no brief for that specialisation in athletics which 
seems to lead so inevitably to the sport becoming more or 
less of a business proposition, one must recognise as a 
fundamental fact in regard to boys' athletics that any 
excessive effort is to be most definitely deprecated. Not 
only do overstrain and overexertion, which must be almost 
a corollary to the efforts of any " Victor Ludorum/' mean 
definite detrimental effects on a boy's physical constitu- 
tion, but also they tend to make him highly strung and 
nervous, and to give him false ideas about the basic 
principles of the sport. 

In a very excellent little book published recently, 
purely on the subject of athletics for boys, the author has 



ATHLETICS 

stressed throughout the importance of aiming at correct 
tuition in style, in form and technique, rather than 
encouraging the establishment of record performances, 
particularly on the wholesale scale and one cannot do 
better here than to reiterate this as the soundest of bases 
on which to tackle the subject. 

It is a well-known fact that very, very few indeed of 
those who at school have been acclaimed " Victor 
Ludorum " have maintained their success in later life. 
A boy's constitution will not stand excesses of forced 
effort, and any premature success he may have in early 
life is but too often paid for in future years with 
disappointment at least, if not with anything more 
serious. The boy who gives evidence of any particular 
prowess at school is the one who demands especially 
careful nursing, whose natural ability should be deliber- 
ately retarded, that it may come to its full maturity at 
that stage of his development when it is more capable 
of doing itself full justice. 

In this respect one would most emphatically advocate 
the limitation in schools of the maximum number of 
events in which any boy should be allowed to compete 
in any* one day, and also the thorough medical examina- 
tion of every boy participating in athletics, not so much 
on the actual day of competition, but rather at the 
beginning of a definite period of preparation for that 
competition. 

Equally emphatically does one deprecate the system 
of compulsory athletics, particularly the ubiquitous, and 
one might almost venture to say iniquitous, " house-run," 
by which all and sundry, willy-nilly, are forced to efforts 
for which they may not only have a distinct dislike, but 
also for whjch they may be definitely unfitted. 

As compensation for the effect these suggested 
restrictions would admittedly have upon Inter-House 
competitions, may one put forward a plea for the 
adoption of what may be termed, for lack of a better 
name, " standard competitions," the basis of which idea 

320 



ATHLETICS FOR BOYS 

is that each House scores points according to the number 
of boys it can produce, either in one particular meeting 
or, even better, over a complete term or athletic season, 
relative to the number competing who can attain to a set 
standard performance in the particular event or events in 
which they take part. This system, whilst still permit- 
ting a basis for competitive effort between Houses, 
obviates any necessity for excessive effort and the possible 
detrimental results appertaining thereto. 

The boy forms a most productive field for the further- 
ance of athletic progress, for he is essentially so much 
virgin soil in which it is possible to plant all that is best 
in the sport. And when one considers the more far- 
reaching possibilities, as touched on in a preceding 
paragraph, offered by athletics in respect of its potential 
effect upon the future manhood of the nation, apart 
altogether from the natural desire to uphold and improve 
the nation's athletic prestige, surely it is incumbent upon 
school authorities to see that amongst their staff is at 
least one who can impart lucidly and satisfactorily the 
essential rudiments of the sport. 

A boy is made of such malleable stuff that he is easily 
taught anything which appeals to him at all. And if he 
be taught well, he automatically forms habits which are 
of inestimable value to him, not only in his future 
athletic career, but in his life generally. He is very 
receptive of detail, hence the importance of starting him 
off on a sound foundation as regards style and technique. 
If he learns the rudiments thoroughly and well at school, 
he will grow up to his later athletic life, be it at 'Varsity 
or elsewhere, with the greatest of all possible assets. 
Faults are comparatively easy to eradicate in the boy, 
almost impossible, very often, 'to get rid of in the adult. 
And for the young athlete training need not present the 
same arduous aspect that it often does to an older man. 
A normal boy's life ensures his being relatively fit all the 
time, and hence liberties in training, such as participation 
in other sports and comparative freedom in regard to 
x 3 21 



ATHLETICS 

diet, are, permissible to him then as they would not be 
in later years. The two great requisites for a boy's 
training are, first, his full and ample allowance of sleep, 
and secondly, common sense, both on his part and his 
teacher's. 

There is really no reason why boys' athletics should 
not cover the complete range of any ordinary programme 
up to a mile in track events, and also suitably modified 
field events, the latter including even the so-called 
" heavy-weight " events, provided always that it is re- 
membered that it is perfection of technique rather than 
development of exceptional prowess that is being aimed 
at. But every event must be taught from the first as 
it will be practised ultimately, and any modifications 
necessary to the age, stature or physique of the boys 
concerned must be such that they do not interfere with 
the essentials of any particular event. It is most 
encouraging to see the field events being properly and 
scientifically taught at many schools now, for there is no 
doubt that our somewhat distressing inferiority, as 
considered on an international basis in this branch of 
athletics, has been due to a lack or absence of tuition in 
schools. There is really no reason why the school 
weight-putter should be the heaviest " rugger " forward, 
or the " number six " of the school eight performing 
inefficiently for one day in the year at the annual sports ! 
Weight-putting, if well taught, is quite an interesting 
event, and a well-developed boy using a 12 or 14-lb. 
shot is quite capable of producing a 37 or 38 feet effort, 
provided he is willing to learn the right technique and 
to practise it. 

In this respect, with regard to field events especially, 
but also to all events, we cannot stress too strongly the 
invaluable influence of visits from notable athletes to a 
School. The boy is a natural hero-worshipper, and he 
wiH probably learn as much in an hour from watching 
a man .who has an established reputation as an exponent 
of some particular branch of athletics as he will in a term 

322 



ATHLETICS FOR BOYS 

from teaching. The Achilles Club have done a great 
deal in recent years towards making this lecture- 
demonstration idea a feasible possibility, and it is an 
example which is being, and one hopes will be further, 
taken up by other clubs in the country. The same club 
is also largely responsible for the introduction into the 
schools of the relay system of athletics, a system which 
for boys is most eminently suitable in that, by empha- 
sising the essential value of the team spirit in athletics, 
it removes what was, perhaps, the one great drawback 
to the sport, namely the tendency towards the personal 
and selfish outlook. 

With the further spread of the already popular relay 
system, and with the advent of masters whose personal 
experience makes them adequately equipped to act as 
athletic coaches, one can hope for much from the future of 
boys' athletics, much that will serve not only to raise the 
general athletic standard in the country, and correspond- 
ingly her international prestige, but also to produce a 
future manhood relatively better fitted to meet the 
demands of a modern civilisation. 



3*3 



APPENDIX 



Event. 



Time or 
Distance. 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 



WORLD'S RECORDS 

RUNNING 

Holder and Nationality. Date. Place. 



Yards. 


M. S. 












CD. J. Kelly (U.S.A.). 


23.6.06 


U.S.A. 






H.P.Drew (U.S. A.). 


28.3.14 


U.S.A. 


IOO 


9f 


J C. W. Paddock (U.S.A.). 


26.3.21 


U.S.A. 






C. H. Coaffee (Canada). 


12.8.22 


Canada. 






1 C. Bowman (U.S.A.). 


2.7.27 


U.S.A. 




T T 2 


/R. E. Walker (S. Africa). 


26.12.08 


S. Africa. 


1 20 


Ilf 


\C. H. Coaffee (Canada). 


4.9.22 


Canada. 


220 


20 1 


R. A. Locke (U.S.A.). 


1.5.26 


U.S.A. 


300 


30J 


/B. J. Wefers (U.S.A.). 
\G. M. Butler (Gt. Britain). 


26.9.96 
26.6.26 


U.S.A. 
England. 


440 


47* 


M. W. Long (U.S.A.). 


4-10.00 


U.S.A. 




47f 


J. E. Meredith (U.S.A.). 


27.IO.l6 


U.S.A. 






fM. W. Sheppard (U.S.A.). 


I4.8.IO 


U.S.A. 


500 


57f 


J C. N. Seedhouse (Great 


29.9.13 


England. 






1 Britain). 






600 


I lOf 


D. G. A. Lowe (Gt. Britain). 


26.6.26 


England. 


880 


i 5i| 


O. Peltzer (Germany). 


3.7.26 


England. 


1000 


2 I2j 


L. Brown (U.S.A.). 


II. 6. 21 


U.S.A. 


1320 


3 2| 


T. P. Conneff (U.S.A.). 


21.8.95 


U.S.A. 


Miles. 










i 


4 iof 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


23-8.23 


Sweden. 


2 


9 if 


E. Wide (Sweden). 


12.9.26 


Germany. 


3 


J 4 ni 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


24-8.23 


Sweden. 


4 


19 15* 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


1.10.24 


Finland. 


5 


24 6* 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


1.10.24 


Finland. 


6 


29 59$ 


A. Shrubb (Gt. Britain). 


5.11-04 


England. 


7 


35 4l 


A. Shrubb (Gt. Britain). 


5-11.04 


England. 


8 


40 16 


A. Shrubb (Gt. Britain). 


5.11.04 


England. 


9 


45 27} 


A. Shrubb (Gt. Britain). 


5.H.04 


England. 


10 


50 i5t 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


7.10.28 


Germany. 




i. m. s. 








15 


I 20 4 f 


F. Appleby (Gt. Britain). 


21.7.02 


England. 


20 


i 5i 54 


G. Crossland (Gt. Britain). 


22.9.94 


England. 


25 


2 29 29$ 


H. Green (Gt. Britain). 


12.5.13 


England. 


Hours. 


Miles yds. 








i 


ii 1648! 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


7.10.28 


Germany. 


2 


20 952 


H. Green (Gt. Britain). 


12.5-13 


England. 



* Straight track. 



| Not yet^authenticated. 



325 



ATHLETICS 



RUNNING 
Metric Distances 

A Comparative Table of Metres and Yards will be found on 

page 360. 
Time or 
Event. Distance. Holder and Nationality. Date. Place. 



Metres. 


M. S. 










100 


loft 


/C.W. Paddock (U.S. A.). 
\H. Kflrnig (Germany). 


23.4-21 
8.8.26 


U.S.A. 
Germany. 


200 


20 




R. A. Locke (U.S.A.). 


1.5.26 


U.S.A. 


300 


33; 




C. W. Paddock (U.S.A.). 


23.4.21 


U.S.A. 


400 


47 J 




J. E. Meredith (U.S.A.). 


27.10.16 


U.S.A. 


500 


I 3 




O. Peltzer (Germany). 


6.6.26 


Germany. 


800 






S. Martin (France). 


14.7.28 


France. 


1,000 


2 25- 


\ 


O. Peltzer (Germany). 


18.9.27 


France. 


1,500 


3 5i 




O. Peltzer (Germany). 


11.9.26 


Germany. 


2,000 


5 23? 


E. Borg (Finland). 


9.8.27 


Finland. 


3,000 


8 20f 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


13.7-26 


Finland. 


5,000 


14 28i 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


19.6.24 


Finland. 


10,000 


30 6i 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


31.8.24 


Finland. 


Kilos. 












15 


46 491 


It 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


7.10.28 


Germany. 




h. m. s. 








20 


i 6 29 


V. SipilS (Finland). 


10.6.25 


Sweden. 


25 


I 25 20 


T. Kolehmainen (Finland) . 


22.6.22 


Finland. 


30 


I 46 II 


I 


A. Stenroos (Finland). 


3L8.24 


Finland. 


Hours. 


Metres. 








i 


9,957 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


3L8.24 


Finland. 


i 


I9,2iof 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


7.IO.28 


Germany. 


2 


33.056 


H. Green (Great Britain). 


I2.5.I3 


England. 


| Not yet authenticated. 



Time or 
Event. Distance. 



WALKING 
Holder and Nationality. 



Date. 



Place. 



Miles. 


M. S. 








i 


6 2 5 t 


G. H. Goulding (Canada). 


4.6.10 


Canada. 


2 


13 nf 


G. E. Larner (Gt. Britain). 


13.7-04 


England. 


3 


20 25| 


G. E. Larner (Gt. Britain). 


19.8.05 


England. 


4 


27 14 


G. E. Larner (Gt. Britain). 


19.8.05 


England. 


5 


36 i 


G. E. Larner (Gt. Britain). 


30.9-05 


England. 


6 


43 26* 


G. E. Larner (Gt. Britain). 


30.9-05 


England. 


7 


50 40$ 


G. H. Goulding (Canada). 


23.10.15 


U.S.A. 


8 


58 I8f 


G. E. Larner (Gt. Britain). 


30.9.05 


England. 




h. m. s. 








9 


i 7 37t 


G. E. Larner (Gt. Britain). 


17.7.08 


England. 


10 

15 


i 15 57* 
i 59 i2f 


G. E. Larner (Gt. Britain). 
H. V. L. Ross (Gt. Britain). 


17.7.08 
20.5.11 


England. 
England. 


20 


2 47 52 


T. Griffith (Gt. Britain). 


30.12.07 


England. 


25 


3 37 6f 


S. C. A. Schofield (Gt. Brit.). 


20.5.11 


England. 


(Jours. 


Miles yds. 








i 


8 438 


G. E. Larner (Gt. Britain). 


30.9.05 


England. 


2 


15 128 


H. V. L. Ross (Gt. Britain). 


20.5.11 


England. 



326 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 



Event. 



Time or 
Distance. 



WALKING 
Metric Distances 

Holder and Nationality. Date. Place. 



Metres. 


M. S. 








3,000 


12 53t 


G. Rasmussen (Denmark). 


7.7.18 


Denmark. 


5,000 


21 5* 


H. Miiller (Germany). 


5-8.21 


Denmark. 


10,000 


45 26| 


G. Rasmussen (Denmark). 


18.8.18 


Denmark. 




h. m. s. 








15,000 


I 10 23 


G. Rasmussen (Denmark). 


9.5.18 


Denmark. 


20,000 


i 37 42j 


D. Pavesi (Italy). 


10.4.27 


Italy. 


25,000 


2 5 "f 


P. Siewert (Germany). 


14.4.27 


Germany. 


Hour. 


Metres. 








i 


13.275 


G. E. Larner (Gt. Britain). 


.05 


England. 



Event. 



Distance. 



JUMPING 

Holder and 
Nationality. 



Date. 



Place. 



Standing High 
Jump 


Ft. 
5 


ins. Metres. 
5l 


L. Goehring 
(U.S.A.). 


14.6.1 


U.S.A. 


High Jump 


6 


8J 2-04 


H. M. Osborne 
(U.S.A.). 


27-5.24 


U.S.A. 


Standing Broad 
Jump 


11 


4J 


R. C. Ewry 
(U.S.A.). 


29.8.04 


U.S.A. 


Broad Jump .. . 


25 


nj* 7-90 


E. B. Hamm 
(U.S.A.). 


7.7.28 


U.S.A. 


Running Hop, 
Step and Jump 


50 


II A I5'525 


A. W. Winter 
(Australia). 


12.7.24 


France. 


Pole Vault 


H 


if 4-29 


S. Carr 
(U.S.A.). 


28.5.27 


U.S.A. 



* 26 ft. (7.93) by S. Cator (Haiti) 9.9.28 not yet authenticated, 
f 14 ft. i j ins. (4.31) by L. Barnes (U.S.A.) 28.4.28 not yet authenticated. 

WEIGHT EVENTS 





Ft. ins. 


Metres. 








Putting the 1 6-lb. 












Weight- 












Best hand .... 


52 i* 


I5-87 


J. Kuck (U.S.A.). 


29.7.28 


Holland. 


Both hands .... 


91 io| 




R. Rose (U.S.A.). 


2.6.12 


U.S.A. 


(Right hand 


50 6 










Left hand 


4i 4i) 










Throwing 56-lb. 
Weight 


40 6| 




M. McGrath. 


23.9.H 


U.S.A. 








(U.S.A.). 






Throwing i6-lb. 












Hammer 


189 6J 


57.78 


P. Ryan (U.S. A.). 


17^.13 


U.SjA. 



* 52-7! (16.045) by E. Hirschfeld (Germany) 26.8.28 not yet authenticated. 

327 



ATHLETICS 



Event. 



THROWING THE Discus 

Holder and 

Distance. Nationality. 



Date. 



Place. 





Ft. 


ins. Metres. 








Best hand 


158 


i}* 48-20 


C. Houser 


3-4-26 


U.S.A. 








(U.S.A.). 






Both hands 


295 


8} 


E. Niklander 


1913 


Finland. 








(Finland). 






(Right hand .... 


149 


6^ 








Left hand 


146 


2|) 









* i6o.| (48.775) by H. Hoffmeister (Germany) 22.7.28 not yet authenticated, 
THROWING THE JAVELIN 





Ft. ins. Metres. 








Best hand 


232 iijJ7i-oit 


E. H. Lundkvist 


15.8.28 


Sweden. 






(Sweden). 






Both hands 


374 "I 


Y. Hackner 


30.9.17 


Sweden. 






(Sweden). 







Event. 



Not yet authenticated. 

HURDLES 

Holder and 
Time. Nationality. 



Date. Place. 



Yds. 

I2O 
220 

(2'6* hurdles) 
440 
(3' hurdles) 


Sees. 
I4t 

23 
52f 


E. J. Thomson 
(Canada). 
C. R. Brookins 
(U.S.A.). 
J. A. Gibson 
(U.S.A.). 


29.5.20 

17-5-24 
2.7.27 


U.S.A. 
U.S.A. 
U.S.A. 



HURDLES 
Metric Distances 



Metres, 
no 

200 

400 


& h Secs - 
' *4t 

23 
52 


G. C.Weightman- 
Smith (South 
Africa) . 
C. R. Brookins 
(U.S.A.). 
H. M. Taylor 
(U.S.A.). 


31.7-28 

17-5.24 
7.7.28 


Holland. 

U.S.A. 
U.S.A. 



Event. Time. 



RELAY RACES 
Holders. 



Date. Place. 



Yds. 


Secs. 












U.S.A. Team : C. W. Pad- 


19.7.24 


England. 


4x100 


37* 


dock, J. V. Scholz, C. 










Bowman, J. E. Leconey. 










' U.S.A. Team : F. Wykoff, J. 


11.8.28 


England. 






Quinn, L. Gumming, H. 










A. Russell. 










* Newark A.C., U.S. A. : Bow- 


4.7.27 


U.S.A. 


4X110 


4i 


man, Currie, Pappas, 










Cu minings. 







328 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 



Event. Time. 



RELAY RACES continued. 
Holders. 



Date. Place. 



Yds. 


M. S. 


' University of So. California, 


14.5-27 


U.S.A. 






U.S.A. : C. E. Borah, E. 






4 X22O 


i 25f 


House, H. Smith, W. 










Lewis. 










'U.S.A. Team: G. Baird, 


11.8.28 


England. 


4X440 


3 I3ft 


H. M. Taylor, R. Barbuti, 










E. Spencer. 










'Boston A. A., U.S.A.: C. 


6.7.26 


U.S.A. 


4X880 


7 4i| 


Sansone, L. Welch, S. H. 










Martin, L. Hahn. 










' University of Illinois, U.S.A. : 


23.6.23 


U.S.A. 


4X1 Mile 


17 2i 


E. Krogh, R. Watson, R. 










Buker, J. Ray. 






Medley 




British Empire Team : P. 


11.8.28 


England. 


(440, 220, 


3 22f 


Edwards, W. Rangeley, J. 






220, 880) 




Fitzpatrick, D. G. A. Lowe. 






Medley 




s NewYorkA.C.,U.S.A. : W. 


26.9.25 


U.S.A. 


(Mile, 220, 


7 25t 


Goodwin, J. V. Scholz, J. 






440, 880) 




Tierney, G. Marsters. 






Medley 




~' Penn. State College, U.S.A. : 


13-5-22 


U.S.A. 


(440, 880, 


TO T tj4- 


D. B. Taylor, A. B. Hel- 






1320, mile) 


1U 1 J5 


ffrich, J. Enck, L. M. 










Shields. 






Hurdles 




U.S.A. Team : H. G. Guthrie, 


19.7.24 


England. 


(4X120) 


I If 


J. Anderson, C. W. Moore, 






(run to and f 


ro) 


D. Kinsey. 







Event. 



Time. 



f Not yet authenticated. 

RELAY RACES 

Metric Distances 
Holders. 



Date. Place. 



Metres. 


M. S. 












IU S. A. Olympic Team : 


13-7-24 


France. 






L. Clark, F. Hussey, 










L. Murchison, A. Leconey 






4X100 


41 


U.S.A. Olympic Team : 
F.Wykoff, J. Quinn, C. E. 


5-8.28 


Holland. 






Borah, H. A. Russell. 










Eintracht Frankfurt, 


10.6.28 


Germany. 






Germany. 










> University of So. California, 


I4-5-27 


y.s.A. 






U.S.A. : C. E. Borah, E. 






4X200 


I 25* 


House, H. Smith, W. 










Lewis. 










^.S.A. Olympic Team : G. 


5.8.28 


Holland. 


4 X4OO 


3 Mi 


Baird, F. Alderman, E. 










Spencer, R. Barbuti. 










" Teutonia-Berlin, Germany : 


3-9.27 


Germany. 


4X800 


8 I 


Schmidt, Isermann, Wai- 










pert, Bocher. 










* Finnish Team : Kouvunalho, 


17.7.26 


Finland. 


4 X 1500 


16 uf 


E. Katz, Liewendahl, 










P. Nurmi. 







329 



ATHLETICS 



DECATHLON 
Event. Holder and Nationality. 



Place. 



Date. 



Points. 
8053-29 


P. Yrj61a 


(Finland) . 


Holland. 


4 & 5.8.28 



OLYMPIC RECORDS 



Time or 
Event. Distance. Holder and Nationality. Place. Date. 


Metres. 


M. S. 












CD. F. Lippincott (U.S.A.). 


Stockholm. 


1912 






H. M. Abrahams (Great 










J Britain). 


Paris. 


1924 


IOO 


IOf 


IP. Williams (Canada). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 






R. McAllister (U.S. A.). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 






J.E 


London (Gt. Britain). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 






A. Hahn (U.S.A.). 


St. Louis. 


1904 


200 


2lf 


. J. V. Scholz (U.S.A.). 


Paris. 


1924 


4OO 


47! 


1 H. Kornig (Germany) 
E. H. Liddell (Gt. Britain). 


Amsterdam. 
Paris. 


1928 
1924 


800 




D.G. 


A. Lowe (Gt. Britain). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


1,500 


3 53i 


H. E. 


Larva (Finland). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


5.OOO 


14 3*i 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


Paris. 


1924 


IO,OOO 


30 i8| 


P. Nurmi (Finland). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 








f L.Clark ^i 










TT c A J F. Hussey 1 
U ' b ' A 'lL. Murchisonf 


Paris. 


1924 


400 Relay 






1 A. Leconey J 






(4 X i oo) 


4 1 ' 




(F. Wykoff ^ 










TT c A J J- Quinn I 
U ' b ' A 'lC. E.Borah f 


Amsterdam. 


1928 








IH. A. Russell J 












(G. Baird ^ 






i, 600 Relay 
(4x400) 


3 Mi 


TT c A |F. Alderman I 
U ' b ' A - \E. Spencer f 


Amsterdam. 


1928 








IR. Barbuti J 












(T> Nnrmi i 






3,000 Team 
race 


8 32 


Finland. -Iw.Ritoia [ 
(E. Katz ) 


Paris. 


1924 


10,000 Walk 


46 28f 


G. H 


. Goulding (Canada). 


Stockholm. 


1912 


no Hurdles 


I4f 


G. C. 


Weightman-Smith 


Amsterdam. 


1928 






(S. 


Africa) . 






400 Hurdles 


53f* 


Lord Burghley (Gt. Britain) 


Amsterdam. 


1928 




Ft. ins. Metres. 








High Jump 


6 6 1-98 


H. M. Osborne 


Paris. 


1924 






(U.S.A.). 






Long Jump 


25 4it 7*73 


E. B. Hamm (U.S.A.) 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


Hop, Step 


50 11^15-525 


A. W. Winter 


Paris. 


1924 


and Jump 




(Australia) 






Pole Jump 


13 9^ 4-203 


S. Carr (U.S.A.). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


Throwing the 


218 6J 66-605 


E. H. Lundkvist 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


Javelin 




(Sweden). 







* H. M. Taylor, (U.S.A.), won in 52$ at Paris in 1924, but knocked down 
a hurdle. 

f R. L. Legendre (U.S.A.) jumped 25 ft. 6 ins. in the Pentathlon com- 
petition at Paris in 1924. 

33 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 

* OLYMPIC RECORDS continued. 



Event. 



Time or 
Distance. 



Holder and Nationality. Place. Date. 





Ft. ins. Metres. 








Throwing the 


155 3 47'325 


C. Houser (U.S.A.). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


Discus 










Throwing the 


179 7i 54'74 


M. J. McGrath 


Stockholm. 


1912 


Hammer 




(U.S.A.). 






Putting the 


52 t 15-87 


J. Kuck (U.S.A.). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


Weight 












Points. 








Pentathlon 


14 


E. R. Lehtonen (Fin- 


Antwerp. 


1920 






land). 






Decathlon 


8053-29 


P. Yrjola (Finland). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 



OLYMPIC TRACK AND FIELD CHAMPIONS 



1896 ATHENS. 
1900 PARIS. 
1904 ST. Louis. 



1906 ATHENS.* 
1908 LONDON. 
1912 STOCKHOLM. 



1920 ANTWERP. 
1924 PARIS. 
1928 AMSTERDAM. 



60 METRES RUN Sees. 

1900 A. C. Kraenzlein, U.S.A. 7 

1904 A. Hahn, U.S.A 7 

100 METRES RUN 

1896 T. E. Burke, U.S.A 12 

1900 F. W. Jarvis, U.S.A. . .. lot 

1904 A. Hahn, U.S.A. .... n 

1906 A. Hahn, U.S.A ni 

1908 R. E. Walker, S. Africa lot 

1912 R. C. Craig, U.S.A io| 

1920 C. W. Paddock, U.S.A. 10$ 
1924 H. M. Abrahams, Gt. 

Britain 10} 

1928 P. Williams, Canada .... iojf 

200 METRES RUN. 

1900 J. W. B. Tewksbury, 

U.S.A 

1904 A. Hahn, U.S.A. 

1908 R. Kerr, Canada . . 22} 

1912 R. C. Craig, U.S. A 21-7 

1920 A. Woodring, U.S.A 22 

~ V. Scholz, U.S.A 2if 

Williams, Canada .... 2i| 



1924 



400 METRES RUN Sees. 

1896 T. E. Burke, U.S.A 54$ 

1900 M. W. Long, U.S.A. .. . 49$ 

1904 H. L. Hillman, U.S.A 49! 

1906 P. Pilgrim, U.S.A 53$ 

1908 W. Halswelle, Gt. 

Britain 50 

1912 C. D. Reidpath, U.S.A. 

1920 B. G. D. Rudd, S. Africa 49 
1924 E. H. Liddell, Gt. 

Britain 47! 

1928 R. Barbuti, U.S.A 47$ 



1928 



800 METRES RUN 

1896 E. H. Flack, Gt. Britain 
1900 A. E. Tysoe, Gt. Britain 
1904 J.D. Lightbody, U.S.A. 

1906 P. Pilgrim, U.S.A 

1908 M. W. Sheppard, U.S.A. 
1912 J. E. Meredith, U.S.A. 
1920 A. G. Hill, Gt. Britain 
1924 D. G. A. Lowe, Gt. 

Britain 

1928 D. G. A. Lowe, Gt. 

Britain 



* Not a regular Olympiad. 

331 



m. s. 

2 II 
2 If 

I 56 
I* 

sn 
51-9 

531 



5't 



ATHLETICS 



1,500 METRES RUN 

m. s. 
1896 E. H. Flack, Gt. 

Britain 

1900 C. Bennett, Gt. Britain 
1904 J.D. Lightbody, U.S.A. 
1906 J.D. Lightbody, U.S.A. 
1908 M. W. Sheppard, U.S.A. 
1912 A. N. S. Jackson, Gt. 

Britain 

1920 A. G. Hill, Gt. Britain 
1924 P. Nurmi, Finland .... 
1928 H. E. Larva, Finland 



5,000 METRES RUN 

1912 H. Kolehmainen, Fin- 
land 14 36} 

1920 J. Guillemot, France 14 55! 

1924 P. Nurmi, Finland .... 14 31 

1928 W. Ritola, Finland .... 14 38 

5-MiLE RUN 

1906 H. Hawtrey, Gt. 

Britain 26 26J 

1908 E. R. Voigt, Gt. 

Britain 25 uj 



io,ooo METRES RUN 

1912 H. Kolehmainen, Fin- 
land 31 20* 

1920 P. Nurmi, Finland .... 31 45$ 

1924 W. Ritola, Finland .... 30 23^ 

1928 P. Nurmi, Finland .... 30 i8f 



MARATHON 



1896 

1900 

1904 

1906 

1908 
1912 

1920 
1924 
1928 


S. Loues, Greece .... 
Teato, France 
T. J. Hicks, U.S.A. 
W. J. Sherring, 
Canada 
J.J.Hayes, U.S. A. 
K. K. McArthur, S. 
Africa 
H. Kolehmainen, 
Finland .... 
A. O. Stenroos, Fin- 
land 
El Ouafi, France .... 


h. 

2 
2 

3 

2 
2 

2 
2 

2 
2 


, m. 
55 
59 

28 

5i 
55 

36 
32 

41 
32 

* 


s. 

20 


53 

23? 

18 
54* 
35* 

22f 

57 

2' 6' 



no METRES HURDLES 

1896 Curtis, U.S.A ......... 

1900 A. C. Kraenzlein, U.S.A. 
1904 F. W. Schule, U.S.A ..... 

1906 R. G. Leavitt, U.S.A ..... 

1908 F. Smithson, U.S.A ..... 

1912 F. W. Kelly, U.S.A ..... 

1920 E. J.Thomson, Canada 
1924 D. C. Kinsey, U.S.A ..... 

1928 S. J. M. Atkinson, S. 
Africa ........ 

200 METRES HURDLES 



1900 A. C. Kraenzlein, U.S.A. 25$ 
1904 H. L. Hillman, U.S.A ..... 24! 



Sees. 

17$ 

15! 

16 

i6J 

15 
15-1 

14* 

15 

14* 



400 METRES HURDLES 

1900 J. W. B. Tewksbury, 

USA 
1904 H. L. Hillman, U.S.A. '.'.'.'. 

1908 C. J.Bacon, U.S.A 

1920 F. F. Loomis, U.S.A 

1924 F. M. Taylor, U.S. A 

1928 Lord Burghley. Gt. 

Britain 



57f 
53* 
55 
54 



53t 



2,500 METRES STEEPLECHASE 

m. s. 

1900 G. W. Orton, U.S.A. 7 34 
1904 J. D. Lightbody, 

U.S.A 7 39! 

3,000 METRES STEEPLECHASE 

1920 P. Hodge, Gt. Britain 10 2$ 
1924 W. Ritola, Finland .... 9 33$ 
1928 R. E. Loukola, Fin- 
land 9 21 1 

3,200 METRES STEEPLECHASE 
1908 A. Russell, Gt. Britain 10 47* 

4,000 METRES STEEPLECHASE 
1900 C. Rimmer, Gt. Britain 12 58! 

8,000 METRES CROSS-COUNTRY 

1912 H. Kolehmainen, Fin- 
land 45 nf 

hurdles. 



332 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 



10,000 METRES CROSS-COUNTRY 



RUNNING HIGH JUMP 



m. s. 


ft. ins. 


1920 P. Nurmi, Finland .... 27 15 


1896 E. H. Clark, U.S.A 5 nj 


1924 P. Nurmi, Finland .... 32 54! 


1900 I. K. Baxter, U.S.A. 6 2} 




1904 S. S. Jones, U.S.A 5 n 




1906 C. Leahy, Ireland .... 5 gj 


1,500 METRES WALK 


1908 H. F. Porter, U.S.A. 6 3 




1912 A. W. Richards, U.S. A. 6 4 


1906 G. V. Bonhag, U.S.A, 7 i2f 


1920 R. W. Landon, U.S.A. 6 4! 




1924 H. M. Osborne, U.S.A. 6 6 


3,000 METRES WALK 


1928 R. King, U.S.A 6 4$ 


1920 U. Frigerio, Italy .... 13 14^ 


STANDING BROAD JUMP 


3,500 METRES WALK 

1908 G. E. Larner, Gt. 
Britain .... 14 55 


1900 R. C. Ewry, U.S.A 10 6f 
1904 R. C. Ewry, U.S.A n 4! 
1906 R. C. Ewry, U.S.A 10 10 
1908 R. C. Ewry, U.S.A 10 nj 




1912 C. Tsicilitiras, Greece n i 


10,000 METRES WALK 




1912 G. H. Goulding, 


RUNNING BROAD JUMP 


Canada 46 28f 




1920 U. Frigerio, Italy .... 48 6J 


1896 E. H. Clark, U.S. A 20 9} 


1924 U. Frigerio, Italy .... 47 49 


1900 A.C.Kraenzlein.U.S.A. 23 6J 




1904 M. Prinstein, U.S.A. 24 i 


IO-MILE WALK 


1906 M. Prinstein, U.S.A. 23 7$ 


h. m. s. 


1908 F. Irons, U.S.A 24 6J 


1908 G. E. Lamer, Gt. 


1912 A. L. Gutterson, 


Britain i 15 57! 


U.S.A 24 nj 




1920 W. Petterssen, 


400 METRES RELAY 
Sees. 


Sweden 23 5f 
1924 D. H. Hubbard, 


1912 Gt. Britain 42$ 
1920 U.S.A. 42^ 


U.S.A 24 6 
1928 E. B. Hamm, U.S.A. 25 4! 


1924 U.S.A. 41 




1928 U.S.A 41 


STANDING HOP, STEP AND JUMP 


i, 600 METRES RELAY 


1900 R. C. Ewry, U.S.A 34 8J 
1904 R. C. Ewry, U.S.A 34 7j 


m. s. 




1908 U.S.A. 3 27^ 




1912 U.S.A. 3 i6J 


RUNNING HOP, STEP AND JUMP 


1920 Gt. Britain 3 22^ 




1924 U.S.A. 3 16 


1896 J. B. Connolly, U.S.A. 45 o 


1928 U.S.A. 3 I4i 


1900 M. Prinstein, U.S.A. 47 4J 




1904 M. Prinstein, U.S.A. 47 o 




1906 P. O'Connor, Ireland 46 2 


STANDING HIGH JUMP 


1908 T. J. Ahearne, 


ft. ins. 


Gt. Britain .... 48 11} 


1900 R. C. Ewry, U.S.A 5 5 


1912 G. Lindblom, Sweden 48 5$ 


1904 R. C. Ewry, U.S.A 4 n 


1920 V. Tuulos, Finland .... 47 7 


1906 R. C. Ewry, U.S.A 5 if 


1924 A. W. Winter, 


1908 R. C. Ewry, U.S.A 5 2 


Australia 50 n^ 


1912 P. Adams, U.S.A 5 4J 


1928 M.Oda, Japan .... 49 n 



333 



ATHLETICS 



POLE JUMP 



ft. in. 



ft. 
10 

10 

II 
II 



1896 W. W. Hoyt, U.S.A. 
1900 I. K. Baxter, U.S.A. 

1904 C. E. Dvorak, U.S.A. 
1906 Gouder, France 

moR / A - c - Gilbert,U,S.A. 12 

1905 \E.T. Cook, Jr., U.S.A. 
1912 H.J.Babcock, U.S.A. 12 

1920 F. K. Foss, U.S.A 13 

1924 L. Barnes, U.S.A 12 

1928 S.Carr, U.S.A 13 



ins. 1906 M.J.Sheridan, U.S.A. 136 

9} 1908 M.J.Sheridan, U.S. A. 134 

9 T V 1912 A. R. Taipale, Fin- 

6 land 148 

6 Right and left hand 
2 A. R. Taipale, Fin- 
land 271 

ni 1920 E. Niklander, Fin- 

5 land 146 

nj 1924 C. Houser, U.S.A 151 

9i 1928 C. Houser, U.S.A 155 



PUTTING THE WEIGHT 

1896 R. S. Garrett, U.S.A. 36 2 

1900 R. Sheldon, U.S.A 46 3$ 

1904 R. Rose, U.S.A 48 7 

1906 M. J.Sheridan, U.S.A. 40 4 

1908 R. .Rose, U.S.A 46 7 

1912 P. J. McDonald, 

U.S.A 50 4 

Right and left hand 

R.Rose, U.S.A 90 5} 

1920 V. Porhola, Finland .... 48 7$ 

1924 C. Houser, U.S.A 49 2.\ 

1928 J.Kuck, U.S.A 52 | 



56-LB. WEIGHT 

1904 E. Desmarteau, 

Canada 34 4 

1920 P. J. McDonald, U.S.A. 36 11$ 



Discus GREEK STYLE 

1906 W. Jaervinen, Fin- 
land 115 4 

1908 M. J. Sheridan, U.S.A. 124 8 



THROWING THE JAVELIN 

1906 E. Lemming, Sweden 175 6 
1908 E. Lemming, Sweden 178 7J 
Held in middle E. 

Lemming, Sweden 179 loj 
1912 E. Lemming, Sweden 198 uj 
Right and left hand 
J. J. Saaristo, Fin- 
land 359 i 

1920 J . Myyra, Finland 215 9} 
1924 J. Myyra, Finland .... 206 6j 
1928 E. H. Lundkvist, 

Sweden 218 6J 



THROWING THE HAMMER 



J.J.Flanagan, U.S.A. 167 



1900 

J 9<>4 J. J.Flanagan, U.S.A. 168 
1908 J.J.Flanagan, U.S.A. 170 
1912 M. J.McGrath,U.S.A. 179 

1920 P. J.Ryan, U.S.A 173 

1924 F. D. Tootell, U.S. A. 174 
1928 P. O'Callaghan, 

Ireland 168 



4 

i 

4t 
o 

5* 



PENTATHLON 

1906 H. Mellander, Sweden .. 
1912 F. R. Bie, Norway 
1920 E. R. Lehtonen, Finland 
1924 E. R. Lehtonen, Finland 



DECATHLON 



Pts. 
24 
, 16 

14 
16 



THROWING THE Discus 



1912 H. Wieslander, 

Sweden .... 7,724-495 

1920 H. Lovland, Nor- 

1896 R. S. Garrett, U.S.A. 95 7 J 1924 H 7 M. Osborae,'"' 6>8 4 ' 35 
1900 Bauer, Hungary .... 118 2 T <V U.S.A. .. 7710-775 

1964 M.J.Sheridan, U.S. A. 128 io 1928 P. YrjOla, Finland 8^053-29 

334 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 
NATIONAL RECORDS 

BRITISH AMATEUR RECORDS 



Event. Time. 



RUNNING 
Holder. 



Where Made. 



Date. 



Yds. 


H. M. S. 








100 


9T 7 * 


E. H. Liddell. 


Stamford Bridge. 


7-7-23 


I2O 


III 


R. E. Walker. 


Glasgow. 


9.8.09 


150 


14! 


W. R. Applegarth. 


Cardiff. 


28.6.13 


200 


19$ 


W. R. Applegarth. 


Kennington Oval. 


14.9.12 


220 


* 


W. R. Applegarth. 


Stamford Bridge. 


4-7-I4 


250 


24* 


E. H. Felling. 


Stamford Bridge. 


22.9.88 


300 


30* 


G. M. Butler. 


Stamford Bridge 


26.6.26 


440 


48| 


W. Halswelle. 


Glasgow. 


1.7.08 


500 


57* 


C. N. Seedhouse. 


Stamford Bridge. 


29.9-13 


600 


I lOj- 


D. G. A. Lowe. 


Stamford Bridge. 


26.6.26 


880 


i 5il 


O. Peltzer. 


Stamford Bridge. 


3-7.26 


IOOO 


2 I4t 


W. E. Lutyens. 


Stamford Bridge. 


3.7.98 


1320 


3 5t 


A. G. Hill. 


Salford. 


4.6.21 


Miles. 










i 


4 I3t 


A. G. Hill. 


Stamford Bridge. 


2,7.21 


2 


9 9l 


A, Shrubb. 


Glasgow. 


11.6.04 


3 


H I7f 


A. Shrubb. 


Stamford Bridge. 


21.5-03 


4 


19 23? 


A. Shrubb. 


Glasgow. 


13-6.04 


5 


24 33* 


A. Shrubb. 


Stamford Bridge. 


12.5.04 


6 


29 59l 


A. Shrubb. 


Glasgow. 


5-11.04 


7 


35 4* 


A. Shrubb. 


Glasgow. 


5-11.04 


' 8 


40 16 


A. Shrubb. 


Glasgow. 


5.11-04 


9 


45 27! 


A. Shrubb. 


Glasgow. 


5.11.04 


10 


50 4<>f 


A. Shrubb. 


Glasgow. 


5.11-04 


ii 


56 23f 


A. Shrubb. 


Glasgow. 


5.11-04 


12 


i 2 43 


S. Thomas. 


Herne Hill. 


22.10,92 


13 


i 9 27t 


F. Appleby. 


Stamford Bridge. 


21.7.02 


14 


i 14 52 


F. Appleby. 


Stamford Bridge. 


21.7.02 


15 


I 20 4} 


F. Appleby. 


Stamford Bridge. 


21.7.02 


20 


i 51 54 


G. Crossland. 


Stamford Bridge. 


22.9.94 


25 


2 29 2gf 


H. Green. 


Stamford Bridge. 


12.5.13 


30 


3 17 36i 


J. A. Squires. 


Balham. 


2.5-85 


40 


4 46 54 


. E. Dixon. 


Birmingham. 


29.12.84 


50 


6 13 58 


E. W. Lloyd. 


Stamford Bridge. 


12.5.98 


Miles yds 










ii 1137 


I O O 


A. Shrubb. 


Glasgow. 


20.11.04 


20 952 


2 O O 


H. Green. 


Stamford Bridge. 


12.5-13 



Event. 



Time. 



HURDLES 
Holder. 



Where Made. 



Date. 



Yds. 
*I20 (3'6*) 

220 (2'6*) 

440 (3') 


Sees. 
I4r 7 * 

24/F 

54 


S. J. M. Atkinson. 
Lord Burghley. 
Lord Burghley. 


Stamford Bridge. 
Stamford Bridge, 
Stamford Bridge. 


7.7.28 

9.7-27 
7.7.28 



* Made on grass. The record on cinders is 14$, held jointly by Lord 
Burghley (11.6.27, at Cambridge) and G. C. Weightman-Smith (23.6.28, 
at Oxford). 

335 



ATHLETICS 



Event. Distance. 



FIELD 
Holder. 



EVENTS 



Where Made. 



Date. 





ft. ins. 








High Jump 


6 5 


B. H. Baker. 


Huddersfield. 


25.6.21 


Long Jump 


25 i 


E. B. Hamm. 


Stamford Bridge. 


11.8.28 


Pole Jump 


13 9 


L. Barnes. 


Stamford Bridge. 


11.8.28 


Hop, Step 










and Jump 


50 9 


W. Peters. 


Stamford Bridge. 


4.7.27 


Hammer 










Throw 


178 ii 


F. D. Tootell. 


Stamford Bridge. 


19.7.24 


Weight 










Putting 


49 ioj 


R. G. Hills. 


Stamford Bridge. 


19.7.24 


Javelin 










Throw 


222 9 


S. A. Lay. 


Stamford Bridge. 


7.7.28 


Discus 










Throw 


147 


E. Paulus. 


Stamford Bridge. 


7.7.28 



Event. Time. 



RELAY RACES 
Holders. 



Date. 



Yds. 


M. S. 










fU.S.A. Team (C. W. Paddock, J. V. 


19.7.24 


4x100 


37t 


j Scholz, C. Bowman, J. E. Leconey). 
1 U.S.A. Team (F. Wykoff, J. Quinn, 


11.8.28 






(_ L. Gumming, H. A. Russell). 




4X110 


4 2 i 


C. F. C. Preussen Krefeld, Germany. 


4.7.27 






(Salz, Werusing, H. Houben, J. Schiiller). 




4x220 


I 29f 






4x440 


3 J 3? 


U.S.A. Team (G. Baird, H. M. Taylor, 


11.8.28 






R. Barbuti, E. Spencer). 




4X880 


7 48* 


British Empire Team (B. Little, N. J. 


11.8.28 






McEachern, P. Edwards, D. G. A. Lowe) . 




4x1 mile 


17 22f 


British Empire Team (A. Docherty, 


11.8.28 






R. S. Starr, W. M. Whyte, C. Ellis). 




Medley 








(440, 220, 








220, 880) 


3 22} 


British Empire Team (P. Edwards, W. 


11.8.28 






Rangeley, J. Fitzpatrick, D. G. A. Lowe). 




4X120 


6if 


U.S.A. Team (H. G. Guthrie, J. An- 


19.7.24 


hurdles 




derson, C. W. Moore, D. Kinsey). 




(run to and 








fro) 









With the exception of the 4 x no yards and 4 X220 yards relays, all 
these records were made in the matches between the United States and 
British Empire Teams at Stamford Bridge after the Olympic Games in 
1924 and 1928. 

AMERICAN RECORDS 

NOTE. Indoor athletics play so prominent a part in America that it 
has been thought proper to give the records for both outdoor and indoor 
meetings. It will be noticed that the records made indoors bear a curious 
relationship to those made in the open, inasmuch as they are much in- 
ferior in the short distances, improve to an equality in the middle dis- 
tances, and become markedly superior in the long distances. The ex- 

33 6 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 



planation is probably twofold. First, that the small tracks, which often 
measure only 300 yards in circumference, involve more cornering, which 
militates against fast times ; and secondly, that the warmer atmosphere 
and possibly the resilience of the board track render the longer distance 
runner less fatigued. 



Event. 



Time or 
Distance. 



RUNNING 
Holder. 



Where Made. 



Date. 



Yds. 


M. S. 












f"L. Murchison. 


New York. 


31.1.23 


*6o 


6J 


<{ A. Francisco. 


Chicago. 


6.3.26 






(^C. Bowman. 


Chicago. 


6.3.26 






f D. J. Kelly. 


Spokane, Wash. 


23.6.06 






J H. P. Drew. 


Berkeley, Cal. 


28.3.14 


IOO 


9f 


] C. W. Paddock. 


Berkeley, Cal. 


26.3.21 






|^C. Bowman. 


Lincoln, Neb. 


2.7.27 


*IOO 


9t 


L. A. Clarke. 


Baltimore, Md. 


9.2.24 


220 


2of 


R. A. Locke. 


Lincoln, Neb. 


1.5.26 


*22O 


22f 


L. Murchison. 


New York. 


6.1.25 


300 




C. W. Paddock. 


Redlands, Cal. 


23-4-21 


^ 


l 


{A. Woodring. 


Buffalo, N.Y. 


II. 2. 22 


3 


3 t 


L. Murchison. 


Buffalo, N.Y 


17.2.23 


1*440 


47 


M. W. Long. 


Guttenberg, N.J. 


4-IO.OO 


440 


47? 


J. E. Meredith. 


Cambridge, Mass. 


27.5.16 


* 44 o 


49? 


JTT. J. Halpin. 
\W. F. Koppisch. 


Buffalo, N Y. 
Buffalo, N.Y. 


I7.3.23 




4 
* 


/M. W. Sheppard. 


New York. 


I4.8.IO 


ooo 




\T. Campbell. 


Chicago. 


31.8.22 


*6'oo 


I Ilf 


A. B. Helffrich. 


New York. 


I7-3.25 


880 


i 52i 


J. E. Meredith. 


Philadelphia, 




*88o 


I 51! 


L. Hahn. 


New York. 


3-3*28 


I OOO 


2 I2j 


L. Brown. 


Philadelphia. 


II. 6.21 


*IOOO 


2 I2f 


L. Halm. 


New York. 


28.2.27 


1320 


3 2| 


T. P. Conneff. 


New York. 


21.8.95 


*I320 


3 3f 


L. Hahn. 


New York. 


9.3.25 


Miles. 










i 


4 I2J 


N. S. Tabor. 


Cambridge, Mass. 


16.7.15 


*i 


4 12 


/P. Nurmi. 
\J. Ray. 


Buffalo, N.Y. 
New York. 


7.3.25 
17-3-25 


2 


9 I7t 


T. S. Berna. 


Ithaca, N.Y. 


45.12 


*2 


8 58i 


P. Nurmi. 


New York. 


14-2.25 


3 


14 22f 


H. Kolehmainen. 


New York. 


17.8.13 


*3 


J 3 5^1 


W. Ritola. 


New York. 


24.2.25 


4 


20 2 


H. Kolehmainen. 


New York. 


1.11.13 


*4 


19 27f 


W. Ritola. 


New York. 


20.1.23 


10 


51 3f 


H. Kolehmainen. 


New York. 


I. II. 13 


*IO 


51 6t 


H. Kolehmainen. 


Buffalo, N.Y. 


1.2.13 




m. yds. 








i hour. 


ii 153 


A. Stenroos. 


New York. 


26.5.25 


Miles. 


h. m. s. 








15 


i 23 24^ 


C. Pores. 


New York. 


1.6.19 


20 


i 58 27* 


J. Clark. 


New York. 


14.11.09 


"25 


2 44 50 


M. Maloney. 


New York. 


8.1.09 



* Indicates that the record was made indoors. 

Y 337 



f Straight track. 



ATHLETICS 



HURDLES 
Event. Time. Holder. Where Made. Date. 


Yds. 


Sees. 








* 7 o 
(Si* 3 '6* 


9i 


/E. F. Smalley. 
\W. Smith. 


Buffalo, N.Y. 
New York. 


21. 2. 2O 

13-2.30 


hurdles) 










*70 


8! 


C. H. Moore. 


New York. 


7-3-25 


(Five 3'6* 










hurdles) 










120 


14! 


E. J. Thomson. 


Philadelphia. 


29.5.20 


f220 


23 


C. R. Brookins. 


Ames, Iowa. 


17.5-24 


(2' 6* 


23t 


C. R. Brookins. 


Chicago. 


7.6.24 


hurdles) 










440 


52f 


J. A. Gibson. 


Lincoln, Neb. 


2.7.27 


(3' hurdles) 











* Indoors. 



t Straight track. 



Event. 



FIELD" EVENTS 



Distance. 



Holder. 



Where Made. 



Date. 





ft. ins. 








High Jump 


6 8J 


H. M. Osborne. 


Urbana, 111. 


27-5-24 


*High Jump 


6 6J 


H. M. Osborne. 


New York. 


27.1.25 


Long Jump 


25 Hi 


E. B. Hamm. 


Boston. 


7.7.28 


*Long Jump 


24 7i 


D. H. Hubbard. 


New York. 


20.3.26 


Hop, Step and 










Jump 


50 H 


D. F. Ahearn. 


Long Island. 


30.5-11 


Pole Vault 


14 if 


L. Barnes. 


California. 


28.4.28 


*Pole Vault 


13 9i 


S. W. Carr. 


New York. 


14.2.27 


Putting the 










Weight 


5i o 


R. Rose. 


San Francisco. 


21.8.09 


'Putting the 










Weight 


50 7f 


H. Schwarze. 




6.3.26 


Throwing the 










Hammer 


189 6i 


P. J. Ryan. 


Long Island. 


17.8.13 


Throwing the 










Discus 


158 ii 


C. Houser. 


Palo Alto, Cal. 


3-4-26 


Throwing the 










Javelin 


212 5 


J. Myrrha. 


Los Angeles. 


25.4-25 



* Indoors. 



338 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 



Event. 



FINLAND 

Time or Distance. 



Holder. 



Year. 



tMetres. 


M. 


s. 








IOO 




. 




/U. Railo. 


1907 






* 




\L. Hard. 


1922 


200 








Astrom. 


1927 


4OO 








E. Vilen. 


1921 


800 


I 


57 




E. Vilen. 


1921 


I,5OO 


3 


52f 




Lagers trom. 


1928 


5,OOO 


14 


35f'o 




P. Nurmi. 


1922 


IO,OOO 


3 o 






P. Nurmi. 


1921 


Hurdles 












no 




I 4iff 




Sjorstedt. 


1928 


400 




54t 




E. Vilen. 


1928 




metres. 


ft. 


ins. 






High Jump 


1-90 


6 


3 


Wahlstedt. 


1927 


Long Jump 


7-29 


23 




V. Tuulos. 


1928 


Pole Jump 


3-70 


12 


if 


A. Ranhamaa. 


1921 


Hop, Step and Jump 
Putting the Weight .... 
Throwing the Hammer 


15-58 
47*57 


51 
50 
156 


i* 
10 

oi 


V. Tuulos. 
WahLtedt. 
E. Nicklander. 


1928 
1928 
1916 


Throwing the Discus . .. 


44*05 


144 


6i 


A. R. Taipale. 


1914 


Throwing the Javelin .... 


69-88 






E. Penttila. 


1927 



ig uiic javcun uyoo zzy j-g- jc.. jrcituuiici. 

f To compare metres with yards, see Table IV, page 360, 



Event. Time or Distance. 



FRANCE 

Holder. 



Where Made. Date. 



Metres. 


M. 


s. 








IOO 




lof 


A. Mourlon. 


Colombes. 


17.7.27 


200 




f 


A. Mourlon. 


Colombes. 


22.6.24 


400 






R. Feger. 


Colombes. 


15-7.28 


800 


i 


50} 


S. Martin. 


Colombes. 


14.7.28 


1,000 


2 


26 


S. Martin. 


Colombes. 


18.9.27 


1,500 


3 


5 2 i 


J. Ladoumegue. 


Colombes. 


15-7-28 


5,000 


14 


36* 


J. Bouin. 


Stockholm. 


10.7.12 


10,000 


30 


58f 


J. Bouin. 


Colombes. 


16.11.11 


Hurdles 












no 




15 


G. Sempe\ 


Colombes. 


9.8.25 


400 




54 


R. Viel. 


Colombes. 


14.7.28 




metres. 


ft. ins. 








High Jump 


i'95 


6 4} 


P. Lewden. 


Stockholm. 


30.8.25 


Long Jump 
Pole Jump 


7-125 
3.90 


23 4f 
12 9} 


L. Wilhelme. 
R. Vintousky. 


Colombes. 
Osaka. 


21.6.24 
13.10.28 


Hop, Step 


13-57 


44 <H 


R. Rousset. 


Pershing. 


I5-7-23 


and Jump 












Weight 


15-09 


49 6} 


E. Duhour. 


Berlin. 


2.9.28 


Hammer 


42-29 


138 9i 


P. Zaidin. 


Paris. 


4,7.26 


Discus 


45*18 


148 2} 


J. Noel. 


Strasbourg. 


26.8.28 


Javelin 


6i'34 


201 2f 


E. Degland. 


Colombes. 


10.6.28 



339 



ATHLETICS 





GERMANY 


Event. Time or 


Distance. Holder. Where Made. Date. 


Metres. 


M. 


s. 








100 




iof 


H. Kornig. 


Leipzig. 


8.8.26 


200 




20 T 


H. Kornig. 


Berlin. 


19.8.28 


400 




47* 


J. Biichner. 


Berlin. 


2.9.28 


800 


i 


5i? 


O. Peltzer. 


London. 


3-7-26 


1,000 


2 


25* 


O. Peltzer. 


Paris. 


18.9.27 


1,500 


3 


51 


O. Peltzer. 


Berlin. 


11.9.26 


5.900 


15 


3 


O. Kohn. 


Paris. 


21.8.27 


10,000 


32 


of 


O. Petri. 


Berlin. 


17.7.27 


Hurdles 












no 




I4A 


H. Trossbach. 


Berlin. 


8.8.25 


400 




54* 


O. Peltzer. 


Berlin, 


17.7.27 




metres. 


ft. ins. 








High Jump 


1-923 


6 3* 


R. Pasemann. 


Braunschweig. 


13.8.11 


Long Jump 


7'645 


25 if 


R. Dobermann. 


Jena. 


10.6.28 


Pole Jump 


3-82 


12 6j 


J. Miiller. 


Dusseldorf. 


15-7-28 


Hop, Step 


14-99 


49 2l 


A. Holz. 


Berlin. 


1.7 22 


and Jump 












Weight 


16-045 


52 7i 


E. Hirschfeld. 


Bochum. 


26 8.28 


Hammer 


46-05 


151 i 


J. Mang. 


Nurnberg. 


17.6.28 


Discus 


48-775 


160 o| 


H. Hoffmeister. 


Gelsenkirchen. 


22.7.28 


Javelin 


64-60 


211 Ilf 


B. Schlokat. 


Oslo. 


18.9.27 




SWEDEN 


Event. Time or 


Distance. Holder. Where Made. Date. 



Metres. 


M. 


s. 








100 




loj 


K. Lindberg. 


Goteborg. 


26.8.06 


200 




2I T 9 ff 


N. Engdahl. 


Stockholm. 


11.7.20 


400 




48$ 


N. Engdahl. 


Stockholm. 


17.8.24 


800 


I 


5 2 * 


E. Bytehn 


Amsterdam. 


31-7-28 


1,000 


2 


28^ 


S. Lundgren. 


Stockholm. 


27.9.22 


1,500 


3 


5 1 * 


E. Wide. 


Berlin. 


11.9.26 


5,000 


14 


4? 


E. Wide. 


Stockholm. 


18.6.25 


10,000 


30 


55* 


E. Wide. 


Paris. 


6.7.24 


Hurdles 












no 




I 4A 


S. Petterssen. 


Stockholm. 


18.9.27 


400 




52? 


S. Petterssen. 


K6ln. 


7.8.28 




metres. 


ft. ins. 








High Jump 
Long Jump 
Pole Jump 


7'5o 
4-00 


24 8 
13 I* 


K. Osterberg. 
0. Hallberg. 
H. Lindblad 


Stockholm. 
Gorle. 
Stockholm. 


19.6.25 
23.9.28 
26.8.28 


Hop, Step 












and Jump 


15.09 


49 61 


F. Jansson. 


Paris. 


28.8.20 


Weight 


15-08 


49 5l 


B. Jansson. 


Stockholm. 


10.9.27 


Hammer 


53*85 


176 71 


O. Skold. 


Stockholm. 


10.9.27 


Discus 


45*77 


150 2 


O. Zallhagen. 


EukSping. 


24.9.16 


Javelin 


71-01 


232 iifj 


E. H. Lundkvist 


Stockholm. 


15.8.28 



340 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 



BRITISH AND DOMINION RECORDS 



ENGLISH NATIVE RECORDS 



Time or 
Event. Distance. 



Holder. 



Where Made. 



Date. 



Yds. 


M. S. 








100 


9f 


/W.R.Applegarth. 
\H. H. Hodge. 


Stamford Bridge. 
Cambridge. 


20.6.14 
11.6.27 




4 


/ W. Page Phillips. 


Stamford Bridge. 


25.3.82 


1 20 


JI 6 


\J. W.Morton. 


Stamford Bridge. 


24.9.04 


150 


Ml 


W. R. Applegarth 


Cardiff. 


28.6.13 


200 




W. R. Applegarth. 


Kennington Oval. 


14.9.12 


220 


2lJ 


W. R. Applegarth. 


Stamford Bridge. 


4.7.14 


250 


2 4i 


E. H. Felling. 


Stamford Bridge. 


22.9.88 


300 


3i 


G. M. Butler. 


Stamford Bridge. 


26.6.26 




8i 


/H. C. L. Tindall 


Stamford Bridge. 


29.6.89 


44 


4 z 


\E. C. Bredin. 


Stamford Bridge. 


22.6.95 


500 


57t 


C. N. Seedhouse. 


Stamford Bridge. 


29.9.13 


600 




D. G. A. Lowe. 


Stamford Bridge. 


26.6.26 


880 


i 53t 


D. G. A. Lowe. 


Fallowfield. 


16.7.27 


IOOO 


2 I4t 


W. E, Lutyens. 


Stamford Bridge. 


3.6.98 


1320 


3 5l 


A. G. Hill. 


Salford. 


4.6.21 


.Miles. 










i 


4 I3t 


A. G. Hill. 


Stamford Bridge. 


2.7.21 


2 


9 J 7 


A. Shrubb. 


Kennington Oval. 


12.9.03 


3 


J 4 I7l 


A. Shrubb. 


Stamford Bridge. 


21.5.03 


4 


19 3i? 


A. Shrubb. 


Preston Park. 


25.10.02 


5 


24 33t 


A. Shrubb. 


Stamford Bridge. 


12.5.04 


6 


30 I7t 


S. Thomas. 


Herne Hill. 


22.10.92 


7 


35 3<H 


S. Thomas. 


Herne Hill. 


22.10.92 


8 


40 57t 


W. G. George. 


Stamford Bridge. 


28.7.84 


9 


46 12 


W. G. George. 


Stamford Bridge. 


7.4.84 


10 


51 20 


W. G. George. 


Stamford Bridge. 


7.4.84 


Yds. 










120 (hrdls.) 


14* 


/Lord Burghley. 
\F. R. Gaby. 


Cambridge. 


11.6.27 
.28 


220 


24/a 


Lord Burghley. 


Stamford Bridge. 


9.7.27 


440 M 


54 


Lord Burghley. 


Stamford Bridge. 


7.7.28 


ft. ins. 








High Jump 6 5 


B. H. Baker 


Huddersfield 


25.6.21 


Long Jump 24 2 J 


H. M. Abrahams. 


Woolwich. 


7.6.24 


Pole Jump ii loj 


L. T. Bond. 


Oxford. 


23.6.28 


Hop, Step 








and Jump 46 9 


J. Higginson 


Wathon-Dearn. 


19.6.26 


Hammer 172 oj 


M. C. Nokes. 


Gloucester. 


16.6.23 


Weight 44 n 


R. S. Woods. 


Stamford Bridge. 


3.7.26 


Javelin 175 3j 


J. Dalrymple. 


Stamford Bridge. 


11.8.28 


Discus 126 i 


M. C. Nokes. 


Stamford Bridge. 


30.7.27 



341 



ATHLETICS 



SCOTTISH RECORDS 



Event. 



Time or 
Distance. 



Holder. 



Date. 



Yds. 


M. S. 






100 


9t 


W. R. Applegarth. 


1913 


220 


21* 


W. R. Applegarth. 


1914 


440 


48* 


W. Halswelle. 


1908 


880 


i 55f 


D. L. Mason. 


1919 


Miles. 








i 


4 16* 


A. G. Hill. 


1919 


4 


19 23$ 


A. Shrubb. 


1904 


TO 


50 4f 


A. Shrubb. 


1904 


120 Yds. 








Hurdles. 


14* 


G. C. Weightman- 








Smith. 


1927 




ft. ins. 






High Jump 


6 6} 


H. M. Osborne. 


1925 


Long Jump 


23 9i 


P. O'Connor. 


1901 


Pole Jump 
Weight 


12 4} 
47 i 


V. H. Pickard. 
D. Horgan. 


1924 
1899 


Hammer 


168 7 | 


J. J. Flanagan 


1911 



IRISH RECORDS 



Time or 
Event. Distance. Holder. 


Yds. 


M. S. 




IOO 


9* 


D. J. Cussen. 


220 

44 


22 
49t 


/N. J. Cartmell. 
\R. Kerr. 
D. G. A. Lowe. 


880 


i 56* 


G. N. Coughlan. 


Miles. 






i 


4 21 


C. Ellis. 


4 


19 44f 


T. P. Conneff. 


10 


56 9i 


F. J. O'Neill. 


120 Yds. 






Hurdles 


15 


S. J.M.Atkinson. 




ft. ins. 




High Jump 


6 5 


T. J. Carroll. 


Long Jump 


24 lij 


P. O'Connor. 


Pole Jump 


13 o 


C. McGinnis. 


Hop, Step 






and Jump 
Weight 


50 iJ 
49 3i 


D. Shanahan. 
R. Rose. 


Hammer 


170 7} 


P. O'Callaghan 



342 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 



AUSTRALASIAN RECORDS 



Time or 
Event. Distance. 



Holder. 



Where Made. 



Date. 



Yds. 


M. S. 












(W. T. Macpherson. 


Auckland 


1891 


100 


9i 


J J. H. Hempton. 


Christchurch. 


1892 






(M. Leadbetter. 


Auckland. 


1927 


220 


21* 


E. W. Carr. 




1922 


44 


48| 


N. C. Barker. 




1908 


880 


I 55J 


W. Hunt. 




1928 


Miles. 










I 


4 i3f 


R. A. Rose. 


Master ton. 


1926 


10 


53 3i| 


A. Gainsford. 




1928 


120 (hrdls.) 


'5* 


/H. E. Wilson. 
\R. W. Lauder. 


Wanganui. 
Auckland. 


1922 
1927 


440 (hrdls.) 


54A 


A. J. Watson. 




1927 




ft. ins. 








High Jump 


6 3* 


E. M. Davidson. 


.... 


1928 


Long Jump 


23 9 


R. J. Honner. 




1921 


Pole Jump 


ii 7* 


M. Kroger. 


.... 


1928 


Hop, Step 










and Jump 


49 8J 


A. W. Winter. 






Weight 


46 oj 


P. Munro. 


Christchurch 


1921 


Hammer 


169 9f 


J. W. Marchant. 




1923 


Discus 


137 


P. Munro. 


Wellington. 


1924 


Javelin 


209 7 


S. A. Lay. 




1928 



CANADIAN RECORDS 



Event. 



Time or 
Distance. 



Holder. 



Date. 



Yds. 


M. S. 






100 


9f 


\C. H. Coaffee. 
/L. Miller. 


1922 
1928 


22O 


2lf 


R. Kerr. 


1908 


440 


48f 


W. C. Robbins. 


1909 


880 


I 52| 


E. Lunghi. 


1909 


Miles. 








i 


4 15 


J. W. Ray. 


1921 


10 








120 (hrdls.) 


i5j 


E. Spence. 


1927 


440 (hrdls.) 


5t 


W. J. Montabone. 


1927 




ft. ins. 






High Jump 


6 3t 


A. Munro. 


1928 


Long Jump 


23 8* 


C. D. Bricker. 


1908 


Pole Jump 


12 8 


V. Pickard 


1926 


Weight 


49 7t 


R. Rose. 


1907 


Hammer 


182 4 


M. J. McGrath. 


1911 


Discus 


143 8f 


G. Pope. 


1922 


Javelin 


202 4{ 


D. W. Pilling. 


1928 



343 



Event. 



ATHLETICS 

SOUTH AFRICAN RECORDS 

Time or 
Distance. Holder. 



Date. 



Yds. 


M. S. 










( R. E. Walker. 


1909 






G. H. Patching. 


1912 






J F. M. Solomon. 


1915 


IOO 


9* 


] G. G. Dustan. 


1923 






L. B. B. Betts. 


1923 






( W. B. Legg. 


1927 


22O 


2lf 


W. B. Legg. 


1928 


440 


48! 


L. B. B. Betts. 


1923 


880 


1 56! 


/W. F. Flynn. 
\C. W. Oldfield. 


1914 
1923 


Miles. 








i 


4 244 


E. B. Palm. 


1925 


10 


52 46* 


K. K. MacArthur. 


1911 


120 (hrdls.) 


15 


S. J. M. Atkinson. 


1923 


440 (hrdls.) 


56f 


A. B. Burton-Durham. 


1926 




ft. ins. 






High Jump 


6 if 


G. Scott. 


1924 


Long Jump 


24 ii 


S. J. M. Atkinson. 


1925 


Pole Jump 


10 IOJ 


D. C. Morkel. 


1922 


Weight 


43 4 


/H. D. Gradwell. 
\ H. B. Hart. 


1894 
1928 


Hammer 


I3i 8f 


N. Mackenzie. 


1921 


Discus 


119 2 


E. G. Sutherland. 


1925 


Javelin 


IQI 


G. C. Weightman-Smith. 


1928 



UNIVERSITY RECORDS 



Time or 
Event. Distance. 



OXFORD v. CAMBRIDGE 

Holder and University 



Date. 



Yds. 


M. S. 






IOO 


9A 


A. E. Porritt (Magdalen, Oxford). 


1925 


440 


49f 


D. Macmillan (Trinity, Cambridge). 


1912 


880 


i 54* 


K. Cornwallis (Trinity, Oxford) 


1904 


Miles. 








i 


4 17* 


C. C. Henderson-Hamilton (Trinity, 








Oxford). 


1905 


3 


14 34t 


G. M. Sproule (Balliol, Oxford). 


1914 


120 (hrdls.) 


i5l 


G. C. Weightman-Smith (Selwyn, Cam- 








bridge) . 


1928 


120 (hrdls.) 


i5* 


K. H. Powell (King's, Cambridge). 


1907 






{Lord Burghley (Magdalene, Cambridge). 


1925 


220 (hrdls.) 


24* 


G. C. Weightman-Smith (Selwyn, Cam- 








bridge). 


1928 




ft. ins. 






Long Jump 


23 7i 


H. M. Abrahams (Caius, Cambridge). 


1923 


High Jump 
Pole Jump 


6 2j 
12 


M. J. Brooks (B.N.C., Oxford). 
G. P. Faust (St. Catherine's, Oxford). 


1876 
1928 


Weight 


43 10 


W. W. Coe (Hertford, Oxford). 


1902 


Hammer 


153 3t 


G. E. Putnam (Christchurch, Oxford). 


1911 



* On grass. f This event was last held in 1921. 

344 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 



AMERICAN INTER- COLLEGIATE RECORDS 



(I.C.A.A.A.A.) 
Time or 
Event. Distance. Holder and University. Where Made. Date, 


Yds, 


M. S. 








IOO 
220 


97, 
20ft 


/J. A. Leconey (Lafayette). 
\H. A. Russell (Cornell). 
C. E. Borah (So. California). 


Cambridge, Mass. 
Cambridge, Mass. 
Philadelphia. 


1922 
1926 
1927 


44 


47f 


J. E. Meredith (Pennsyl- 










vania) . 


Cambridge, Mass. 


1916 


880 


i 53 


J. E. Meredith (Pennsyl- 










vania) . 


Cambridge, Mass. 


1916 


Miles. 










i 


4 Ml 


J. P. Jones (Cornell). 


Cambridge, Mass. 


1913 


2 


9 22f 


J. C. Dresser (Cornell). 


Cambridge, Mass. 


1919 


120 (hrdls.) 


I4f 


E. J. Thomson (Dart- 










mouth). 


Philadelphia. 


1920 






{A. C. Kraenzlein (Penn- 






220 (hrdls.) 


231 


sylvania) . 
J. I. Wendell (Wesleyan). 


New York. 
Cambridge, Mass. 


1898 
1913 






K. D. Grumbles. 


Cambridge, Mass. 


1926 




ft. ins. 








High Jump 


6 5* 


R. W. King (Stanford). 


Cambridge, Mass. 


1926 


Long Jump 


24 loj 


A. H. Bates (Penn. State). 


Cambridge, Mass. 


1928 


Pole Jump 


14 o 


S. W. Carr (Yale). 


Philadelphia. 


1927 


Weight 


50 i 


E. W. Kreuz (Stanford) 


Cambridge, Mass. 


1928 


Ifammer 


181 6| 


F. D. Tootell (Bowdoin). 


Philadelphia. 


1923 


Discus 


154 ii 


E. W. Kreuz (Stanford) 


Cambridge, Mass. 


1928 


Javelin 


205 7f 


C. B. Hines (Georgetown). 


Philadelphia. 


1927 



OXFORD-CAMBRIDGE v. YALE-HARVARD. 

Time or 
Event. Distance. Holder and University. Year. 



Yds. 


M. S. 






IOO 


9t 


/ W. A. Schick (Harvard). 


1904 






\*A. H. Miller (Harvard). 


1925 


220 


2lf 


J H. M. Abrahams (Cambridge). 


1923 






\*A. E. Porritt (Oxford). 


1925 


44 


49 


*B. G. D. Rudd (Oxford). 


1921 


880 


i 53? 


*D. G. A. Lowe (Cambridge). 


1925 


Miles. 








I 


4 20f 


*H. B. Stallard (Cambridge). 


1921 


2 


9 29^ 


E. G. Taylor (Oxford). 


1911 


Hurdles 








1 20 


15* 


G. C. Weightman-Smith (Cambridge). 


1927 


220 


24ft 


Lord Burghley (Cambridge). 


1927 




ft. ins. 






High Jump 


6 3 


*R. W. Landon (Yale). 


1921 


Long Jump 


25 3 


*E. O. Gourdin (Harvard). 


1921 


Pole Jump 


13 o 


*S. W. Carr (Yale). 


1925 


Weight 


44 5 


C. A. Pratt (Harvard). 


1927 


f Hammer 


159 3f 


*J. F. Brown (Harvard). 


1921 



* Indicates made in America. 



f Omitted since 1921. 



ATHLETICS 



Event, 



INTER- VARSITY ATHLETIC BOARD 

(I.V.A.B.) 

Holder and University. 



Time or 
Distance. 



Year. 



Yds. 


M, S. 






100 


10* 


J. E. London (London). 


1928 


220 


22| 


J. W. Thwaite (Liverpool). 


1923 


440 


51 


J. V. S. Milne (Leeds). 


1924 


880 


2 3i 


E. A. Johnstone (Manchester). 


1925 


Miles 








I 


4 32 


D. J. P. Richards ( Aberystwy th) . 


1926 


3 


15 i6i 


B. C. V. Oddie (London). 


1926 


Hurdles 








120 


16} 


D. C. Prowse (Bristol). 


1922 


440 


59f 


D. McC. Bone (Liverpool). 


1924 




ft. ins. 






High Jump 


5 loi 


J. E. London (London). 


1926 


Long Jump 
Pole Jump 
Weight 


22 4! 
10 10 

41 o 


C. A. Gee (Nottingham). 
J. W. Jessen (London). 
K. H. Pridie (Bristol). 


1923 
1927 
1927 


Hammer 


105 4 


K. H. Pridie (Bristol). 


1928 


Discus 


120 7$ 


K. H. Pridie (Bristol). 


1928 


Javelin 


163 3 


W. P. Abell (Nottingham). 


1926 



Event. 



PUBLIC SCHOOLS SPORTS RECORDS 

Holder and School. 



Time or 
Distance. 



Year. 



Yds. 


M. S. 






100 


* 


f C. F. N. Harrison (Eton). 
\R. S. Rowlands (City of London). 


1923 

/IQ25 
\i926 




*ioj 


G. B. Bookless (Lancing). 


1928 


440 


52 


D. Barrington Hudson (Imp. Service 








College, Windsor). 


1927 


880 


2 If 


H. S. Townend (St. Edmund's, Canter- 








bury). 


1927 


I Mile. 


4 3 2 t 


/B. T. Ward (Rossall). 
\H. W. Gregson (Oundie). 


1898 
1900 


Hurdles. 








120 


i6J 


P. R. O'R. Phillips (Highgate). 


1910 




* IO Yir 


G. Dyas (Lancing). 


1928 




ft. ins. 






High Jump 


5 ioj 


H. A. Simmons (Taunton's, Southamp- 








ton). 


1928 


Long Jump 


22 3J 


J. Simpson (Oundie). 


1928 


Pole Jump 


9 2 i 


M. S. Tweedie (Charterhouse). 


1927 


iMile 








Steeple- 


M. S. 






chase 


4 3l 


V. E. Morgan (Charterhouse). 


1923 


Mile Walk 


7 3 2 t 


J. B. Came (Polytechnic). 


1923 



* With strong wind. 

346 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 



WOMEN'S WORLD RECORDS 

Time or 
Event. Distance. Holder and Nationality. Where Made. 



Year. 





M. S. 








100 yards 


II 


Miss Rosenfeld (Canada). 


Toronto. 


1925 


100 meters 


i 


Miss Robinson (U.S.A.). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


800 meters 


2 i6| 


Frau Radke (Germany). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


400 Relay 


4H 


Canadian Olympic Team. 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


(4 x 100 m.) 












ft. ins. 








High Jump 


5 3 


Miss Catherwood (Can- 










ada). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


Long Jump 


19 7i 


Miss Hitomi (Japan). 


London. 


1928 


Weight 


39 2 


Frl. Heublein (Germany) . 


Berlin 


1928 


Discus 


130 ij 


Mile. Konopacka (Po- 










land). 


Amsterdam. 


1928 


Javelin 


125 11} 


Frl. Hargus (Germany). 


Berlin 


1928 



347 



TABLE 1 

SHOWING PROGRESS OF WORLD'S RECORDS SINGE 1880, 
AND THE COUNTRY IN WHICH THE RECORD WAS MADE 







100 YARDS. 








220 YARDS. 




Prior 
to 
1880 


10 


J. P. Tennent ('68), 
J. G. Wilson ('70), 
G. H. Urmston ('73). 
E. J. Davies ('74). 
W. C. Warner ('78). 


England. 
England. 
England. 
England. 
U.S.A. 


Prior 
to 
1880 


221 


W. C. Wilmer ('78). 


U.S.A. 


1880 


10 


L. E. Myers. 


U.S.A. 


1880 






..k. 


1881 








1881 








1882 








1882 


| 


H. S. Brooks. 


U.S.A. 


1883 








1883 








1884 




J. M. Cowie. 


Scotland. 


1884 








1885 








1885 


22 


W. Baker!" 


U.S.A. 


1886 




A. Wharton. 


England. 


1886 


2lf 


C. G. Wood. 


England. 


1887 








1887 








1888 




F. Westing. 


U.S.A. 


1888 








1889 








1889 








1890 


9t 


J. Owen. 


U.S.A. 


1890 








1891 




W. Macpherson. 


N. Z. 


1891 




L. H. Gary'. 


England. 


1892 




J. H. Hempton. 


N. Z. 


1892 








1893 




C. W. Stage. 


U.S.A. 


1893 








1894 








1894 








1895 




J. V. Crum. 


U.S.A. 


1895 




B. J. Wefers. 


U.S.A. 






C. A. Bradley. 


England. 






J. V. Crum. 


U.S.A. 


1896 
189? 




B. J. Wefers. 
B. J. Wefers. 
J. H. Maybury. 
B. J. Wefers. 


U.S.A. 
U.S.A. 
U.S.A 
U.S.A. 


1896 

1897 
1898 


21* 


J. H. Maybury. 
B. J. Wefers. 


U.S.A 
U.S.A. 


1898 


.... 


J. H. Rush. 


U.S.A. 


1899 








1899 




,. 




1900 








1900 








1901 








1901 




A. F. Duffey. 


U.S.A. 


1902 












E. M. Sears. 


U.S.A. 


1903 












A. F. Duffey. 


England. 


1904 








1902 


9f 


A. F. Duffey. 


U.S.A. 


1905 








1903 








1906 




D. J. Keiiy. 


U.S.A. 


1904 








1907 








1905 








1908 








1906 




D. J. Kelly. 


U.S.A. 


1909 








1907 








1910 




R. C. Craig. 


U.S.A. 


1908 








1911 




R. C. Craig. 


U.S.A. 


1909 








1912 








1910 








1913 




D. F. Lippincott. 


U.S.A. 


1911 








1914 




H. P. Drew. 


U.S.A. 


1912 












W. R. Applegarth. 


England. 


1913 












G. Parker. 


U.S.A. 


1914 




H. P. Drew. 


U.S.A. 


1915 








1915 








1916 








1916 








1917 








1917 








1918 








1918 








1919 








1919 








1920 








1920 








1921 


20f 


C. W. Paddock 


U.S.A. 


1921 




C. W. Paddock (5 


U.S.A. 






(twice). 








times). 




1922 








1922 




C. Coaffee. 


Canada. 


1923 




H. A. Russell. 


U.S.A. 


1923 






U.S.A. 


1924 




C. W. Paddock. 


U.S.A. 


1924 




C. W. Paddock. 




1925 








1925 








1926 


20$ 


R. A. Locke. 


U.S.A. 


1926 








1927 








1927 




C. Bowman. 


U.S.A. 


1928 








1928 

















348 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 

TABLE I. continued. 



' 




440 YARDS. 








880 YARDS. 




Prior 
to 
1880 


51 


E, Ridley ('68). 
E. J. Colbeck ('68), 
J. Shearman ('77). 


England. 
England. 
England. 


Prior 
to 
1880 


2 O 

i 59 
i 57i 


A. C. Pelham ('72). 
W. Slade ('76), 
W. Slade (>). 
F. T.Elborough('76). 


England. 
Ireland. 
Ireland. 
England. 


i48o 








880 








1881 


49t 


L. E. Myers. 


U.S.A. 


881 


i 56 


L. E. Myers. 


England. 






L. E. Myers. 


England. 


882 








1882 








883 








1883 








884 


i*55f 


L. E. Myers. 


England. 


1884 








885 




L. E. Myers (twice). 


U.S.A. 


1885 








886 








1886 
1887 


471 


W. Baker!" 


U.S.A. 


887 
888 


i'54l 


F. J. K. Cross. 


England. 


1888 








889 








1889 


48* 


H. C. L. Tindall. 


England. 


890 






.... 


1890 


47! 


W. C. Downs. 


U.S.A. 


891 








1891 








1892 








1892 








1893 








#3 

1894 








1894 
1895 


1*531 


C. H. Kilpatrick. 


U.S.A. 


1895 


48* 


E. C. Bredin. 


England. 


1896 








1896 








1897 








1897 








1898 








1898 


.... 






1899 








1899 








1900 








1900 


47* 


M. W. Long .... 


U.S.A. 


1901 










*47 


M. W. Long. 


U.S.A. 


1902 








1901 








1903 








1902 








1904 








1903 








1905 








1904 


.... 






1906 








1905 
1906 
1407 








1907 
1908 
1909 


i s4 


M. W, Sheppard. 
E. Lunghi. 


England. 
Canada. 


1908 








1910 








1909 
1910 








1911 
1912 


i 52} 


J. E. Meredith. 
J. E. Meredith. 


Sweden. 
Sweden. 


1911 
















1912 








1913 






*"" 


igiq 








1914 








1914 

1915 








1915 
1916 


r^ 


J. E. Meredith. 


U.SA. 


1916 


47f 


J. E. Meredith. 


U.S.A. 


1917 








1917 








1918 








1918 








1919 








1919 








1920 








1920 








1921 








1921 








1922 








1022 








1923 








1923 








1924 








1924 
192: 








1925 
1926 


i 5 J t 


0. Peltzer." 


England. 


1926 








1927 
1928 


!.... 


L. Hahn."" 


U.S.L 


1927 
1928 













S. Martin. 


France. 



* Straight track. 

i 



f Made indoors. 



{ Times for 800 metres, 

349 



ATHLETICS 

TABLfe 1. continued. 







ONE MILE. 








TWO MILES. 




Prior 
to 
1880 


4 29 
426 
4 24* 


W,M. Chinnery ('68), 
W. Slade ('74). 
W. Slade ('75). 


England. 
England. 
England. 


'nor 
to 
1880 








1880 


4 23i 


W. G. George. 


England. 


1880 








1881 


.... 






1881 








1882 


4 I9| 


W. G. George. 


England. 


1882 








1885 


.... 






1883 








1884 
1885 


4i8f 


W. G. George. 


England. 


1884 
1885 


9 I7f 


W. G. George. 


England. 


1886 








1886 








1887 








1887 








1888 








1888 








1889 








1889 








1890 








1890 








1891 








1891 








1892 








1892 








1893 








1893 








1894 


4"i8J 


F. E. Bacon. 


Scotland. 


1894 








1895 


4 17 


F. E. Bacon. 


England. 


1895 










4 >5l 


T. P. Conneff. 


U.S.A. 










1896 








1896 








1897 








1897 








1898 








1898 








1899 








1899 








1900 








1900 








1901 








1901 








1902 








1902 








1903 








1903 


9 17 


A. Shrubb, 


England. 


1004 








1904 


9 9i 


A. Shrubb. 


England. 


1905 








1905 








1906 








1906 








1907 








1907 








1908 








1908 








1909 








1909 








1910 








1910 








1911 


V'i'st 


J. P. Jones. 


U.S.A. 


1911 








1912 








1912 








1913 


4"i4i 


J. P. Jones. 


U.S.A. 


1913 








1914 


..*. 






1914 








1915 


412f 


N. S. Tabor. 


U.S.A. 


1915 








1916 








1916 








1917 








1917 








1918 








1918 








1919 








1919 








1920 








1920 








1921 








1921 








1922 








1922 








1923 


4 i! 


P. Nurmi. 


Sweden. 


1923 








1924 








1924 








1925 








1925 




.... 


.... 


1926 








1926 


9""ii 


E. Wide. 


Germany. 


1927 




.... 




1927 




.... 


.... 


1928 




.... 




1928 




.... 





RECORDS AND STATISTICS 

TABLE I. continued. 



FOUR MILES. 


TEN MILES. 


Prior 
to 
1880 








Prior 
to 
1880 








1880 








1880 








1881 








1881 








1882 








1882 








1883 








1883 








1884 








1884 


51 20 


W. G. George. 


England. 


1885 








1885 








1886 








1886 








1887 








1887 








1888 








1888 








1889 








1889 








1890 








1890 








1891 








1891 








1892 








1892 








1893 








1893 






.... 


1894 








1894 








1895 








i895 








1896 








1896 








1897 








1897 








1898 








1898 








1899 








1899 








1900 








1900 








1901 








1901 








1902 








1902 








1903 








1903 








1904 


19 23? 


A. Shrubb, 


Scotland. 


1904 


50 40? 


A. Shrubb. 


Scotland. 


1905 








1905 








1906 








1906 








1907 








1907 






.... 


1908 








1908 








1909 








1909 








J9io 








1910 








1911 








1911 








1912 








1912 








1913 








1913 








1914 








1914 








1915 








1915 








1916 








1916 








1917 








1917 








1918 








1918 








1919 








1919 








1920 








1920 








1921 








1921 








1922 








1922 








1923 








1923 








1924 


19 I5i 


P. Nurmi. 


Finland. 


1924 








J925 








1925 








1926 








1926 








1927 








1927 






.... 


1928 








1928 


50 15 


P. Nurmi. 


Germany. 



3*1 



ATHLETICS 

TABLE I. continued. 



120 YARDS HURDLES. 


220 YARDS HURDLES. 


Prior 
to 
1880 


16* 


S. Palmer ('78), 


England. 


Prior 
to 
1880 








1880 








1880 








1881 


W 


G. P. Lawrence, 


England. 


1881 








1882 








1882 








1883 




S. Palmer, 


England. 


1883 








1884 








1884 








1885 








1885 








1886 


16 


C, F. Daft. 


England. 


1886 








1887 








1887 


27 


A. F. Copland. 


U.S.A. 


1888 




S. Joyce. 


England. 


1888 


26f 


A. F. Copland. 


U.S.A. 


1889 








1889 






.... 


1890 








1890 






.... 


1891 


I5t 


H. L. Wiiiiams. 


U.S.A. 


1891 








1892 


I5i 


W. H. Henry. 


U.S.A. 


1892 








1893 








1893 








1894 


i5l 


S. Chase. 


U.S.A. 


1894 






U.S.A. 


1895 








1895 


24! 


J. L. Bremen 


U.S.A. 


1896 




G. B. Shaw. 


England. 


1896 








1897 








1897 








1898 


I5i 


A. C. Kraenzlein. 


U.S.A. 


1898 


ia'i 


A. C. Kraenzlein. 


U.S.A. 


1899 








1899 








1900 








1900 








1901 








1901 








1902 








1902 








1903 








1903 








1904 








1904 








1905 








1905 








1906 


.... 






1906 








1907 








1907 








1908 




A, B. Shaw. 


U.S'.A, 


1908 










*'i5 


F. C. Smithson. 


Sweden. 


1909 








1909 


I5i 


F. C. Smithson. 


U.S.A. 


1910 








1910 








1911 






.... 


1911 








1912 








1912 




J. P. Nicholson. 




1913 




J. I. Wendell. 


U.S'.A. 


1913 


15 


F. W. Kelly. 


U.S.A. 


1914 








1914 




F, W. Kelly. 


U.S.A. 


1915 








1915 








1916 




R. Simpson. 


U.S.A. 


1916 


i'it 


R. Simpson. 


U.S.A. 


1917 








1917 








1918 








1918 








1919 








1919 








1920 








1920 


i'i 


E. Thomson. 


U.S.A. 


1921 








1921 








1922 








1922 


.... 






1923 








1923 








1924 


23 


C. R. Brookins. 


U.S.A. 


1924 








1925 








1925 


.... 






1926 






U.S.A. 


1926 








1927 








1927 


.... 






1928 








1928 











* no meters, i.e. 120 yds. io/ ins. 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 

TABLE I. continued. 



440 YARDS HURDLES. 


HIGH JUMP. 


Prior 
to 
1880 








Prior 
to 
1880 


6 o 


M. J. Brooks ('76) 


England. 


1880 








1880 








/S8i 








1881 


6 oj 


P. Davin. 


England. 


1882 








1882 








1883 








1883 








1884 








1884 








1885 








1885 








1886 








1886 








1887 








1887 


6" 4 


W. B. Page. 


U.S.A. 


1888 








1888 








1889 








1889 








1890 








1890 








1891 


57i 


G. B, Shaw. 


England. 


1891 








1892 








1892 








1893 








1893 








1894 








1894 








J895 








i895 


6"sl 


M. F. Sweeney. 


U.S.A. 


?8 9 6 








1896 






.... 


1897 








1897 








1898 








1898 








1899 








1899 








1900 








1900 








1901 








1901 








1902 








1902 








1903 








1903 








1904 








1904 








1905 








1905 








1906 








1906 








1907 








1907 








1908 








1908 








1909 








1909 








1^0 


& 


G. R. L. Anderson. 


England. 


1910 








1911 








1911 






.... 


1912 








912 


6 '7 


T. L. Horine. 




1913 








1913 








1914 








1914 


6*7A 


E. Beeson. 


U.S.A. 


1915 


54* 


W. H. Meanix, 


U.S.A. 


915 








1916 








916 








1917 








917 








1918 








918 








1919 








919 






.... 


1920 


54i 


J. K. Norton. 


U.S.A. 


920 








1921 








921 








1922 




.... 




922 






.... 


1923 
1924 








923 
924 


6 8i 


H. M. Osborne. 


U.S.A. 


IJ25 








925 






.... 


1926 








926 








1927 




Lord Burghley. 


England. 


927 










f 


J, A, Gibson. 


U.S.A. 


928 








1928 

















353 



ATHLETICS 

TABLE I. continued. 



LONG JUMP. 


POLE JUMP. 


Prior 
to 
1880 


22 8 


E. Baddeley ('78). 


England, 


Mor 
to 
880 


to 9 ] 


K, E, Kayll ('77). 


England. 


1880 








880 








1881 


2 II 


?. Davin. 


England. 


881 


i 3 


T. Ray. 


England.. 


1882 








882 








1883 


foj 


. W. Parsons. 


U.S.A. 


883 








1884 








884 








1885 








885 








1886 


23 3 


M. W. Ford. 


U.S.A. 


886 








1887 








887 


H 5 


H. H. Baxter. 


U.S.A. 


1888 








1888 








1889 








1889 








1890 


23""3i 


A. F. Copland. 


U.S.A. 


1890 








1891 


23 6} 


C. S. Reber. 


U.S.A. 


1891 








1892 








1892 


""'sl 


W. S. Rodenbaugh. 


U.S.A. 


1893 






.... 


1893 








1894 








1894 








i895 








1895 








1896 








1896 








1897 








1897 








1898 


23""8J 


M. Prinstein. 


U.S.A. 


1898 


II IOJ 


R. G. Clapp. 


U.S.A. 


1899 
1900 


24 4| 
24 7i 


A. C. Kraenzlein. 
M. Prinstein. 


U.S.A. 
U.S.A. 


1899 
1900 








1901 


24 n| 


P. O'Connor. 


Ireland. 


1901 








1902 








1902 








1903 








1903 








1904 








1904 


I2""lJ 


N. Dole. 




1905 








1905 








1906 








1906 


12 4J 


^. R. Samse. 


U.S.A. 


1907 








1907 


12 5\ 


W. R. Dray. 




1908 








1908 


12 9i 


W. R. Dray. 




1909 








1909 






.... 


1910 








1910 


12 10^ 


L. S. Scott. 


k 


1911 








1911 








1912 








1912 


I3""2i 


M. S. Wright. 




1913 








1913 








1914 








1914 








1915 








1915 








1916 








1916 








1917 








1917 








1918 








1918 








1919 


., 






1919 


13!* 


F. K. Foss. 




1920 








1920 


13 5iV 


F. K. Foss. 


Belgium. 


1921 


25 3 


E. 0. Gourdin. 


U.S.A. 


1921 








1922 








1922 






.... 


1923 








1923 


13 9i 


C. Hoff."" 


U.S.A. 


1924 


25 5 


R. L. Legendre. 


France. 


1924 


13 10 


R. Spearow. 


U.S.A. 


1925 


25 I0 1 


D. H. Hubbard. 


U.S.A. 


1925 


13 "; 


C. Hoff. 


France. 


1926 




.... 




1926 






* 


1927 


.... 






1927 


14 o 


S. W, Carr. 


U.S.A. 


1928 


25 II 


E. B. Hamn. 


U.S.A. 




14 I 


S. W. Carr. 


U.S.A. 


.... 


26 o 


S. Cator. 


France. 


1928 


14 i| 


L. Barnes. 


U.S.A. 



354 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 

TABLE I, continued. 



HOP, STEP AND JUMP. 


PUTTING THE WEIGHT. 


Prior 
to 

1880 








Prior 
to 
1880 


42 5 


E. J. Bor. 


England. 


1880 








1880 






.... 


l 83i 








1881 








1882 








1882 








1883 








1883 


43 o 


F. L. Lambrecht. 


U.S.A. 


1884 


44 ""if 


M. W. Ford. 


U.S.A. 


1884 








1885 




.... 




1885 


43 oj 


D. J, Mackinnon. 


England. 


1886 








1886 








1887 








1887 


43 n 


G. R. Gray. 


U.S.A. 


1888 








1888 






.... 


1889 








1889 








1890 








1890 








1891 








1891 








1892 








1892 








1893 


48""6 


E. B. Bloss. 


U.S.A. 


i893 


47 o 


G. R. Gray. 


U.S.A. 


1894 








1894 








895 








1895 








1896 








1896 








1897 








1897 








1898 








1898 








1899 








1899 


47 i 


D. Horgan. 


Ireland. 


1900 








1900 


48 2 


D. Horgan. 


Ireland. 


1901 








1901 




.... 




1902 








1902 




R. Rose. 


U.S.A. 


1903 








1903 






.... 


1904 








1904 


4 8"" 7 


R. Rose. 


U.S.A. 


1905 








1905 


49 6 


W. W. Coe. 


U.S.A. 


1906 








1906 








1907 








1907 


49 7l 


R. Rose. 


U.S.A. 


1908 


48"iii 


D. F. Ahearn. 


U.S.A. 


1908 


49 10 


R. Rose. 


U.S.A. 


1909 








1909 


5i o 


R. Rose. 


U.S.A. 


;>9io 


49 7t 


D. F. Ahearn. 


U.S.A. 


1910 








1911 


50 II 


D. F. Ahearn. 


U.S.A. 


1911 








1912 








1912 








1913 








1913 








1914 








1914 








1915 








1915 








1916 








1916 








1917 








1917 








1918 








1918 






.... 


1919 








1919 








1920 








1920 








1921 








1921 








1922 








1922 








1923 








1923 








1924 


50 ni 


A. Winter. 


France. 


1924 






.... 


J925 


.... 






1925 








1926 








1926 








1927 








1927 








1928 


.... 






1928 


51 9i 


E. Hirschfeld. 


Germany. 












52 0} 


J. Kuck. 


U.S.A. 












52 7J 


E. Hirschfeld. 


Germany. 



355 



ATHLETICS 

TABLE I. continued. 



THROWING THE HAMMER. 


THROWING THE DISCUS. 


Prior 
to 
1880 


120 


S. S. Brown ('74) 


England. 


Prior 
to 
1880 








1880 








7-foot Circle 






iSSi 








1880 








1882 








1881 








1883 








1882 








1884 








1883 








1885 








1884 








1886 








1885 








1887 








1886 








1888 








1887 








1889 


130 o 


W. J.Mi'Barry. 


England. 


1888 








1890 


130 8 


J. S. Mitchel. 


U.SA. 


1889 






.... 


1891 








1890 








1892 


140 II 


J. S. Mitchel, 


U.S.A. 


1891 








1893 




.... 




1892 








1894 








1893 








1895 




.... 


U.S.A. 


1894 








1896 


147 o 


J. J. Flanagan. 


U.S.A. 


i895 








1897 
1898 
1899 


150 8 
151 ioi 
164 6 


J. J. Flanagan. 
J. J. Flanagan. 
J. J, Flanagan. 


U.S.A. 
U.S.A. 
U.S.A. 


1896 
1897 
1898 


118 9 


C. H. Henneman. 


U.S.A. 


1900 


167 4i 


J. J. Flanagan. 


France. 


1899 








1901 


171 9 


J. J. Flanagan. 


U.S.A. 


1900 








1902 




.... 




1901 


120 7^ 


ML J. Sheridan. 


U.S.A. 


1903 








1902 


127 8f 


M. J. Sheridan. 


U.S.A. 


1904 


172 II 


J, J. Flanagan, 


U.S.A. 


1903 






U.S.A. 


1905 








1904 


I33""6i 


M. J. Sheridan. 


U.S.A. 


1906 








i9<>5 






U.S.A. 


1907 


173 7 


M. J. McGrath. 


U.S.A. 


1906 


135 5 


M. J. Sheridan. 


U.S.A. 


1908 








1907 


136 10 


M. J. Sheridan. 


U.S.A. 


1909 


184 4 


J. J. Flanagan. 


U.S.A. 


1908 








1910 




..., 




1909 


139 ioj 


M. J. Sheridan. 


U.S.A. 


1911 


187 "4 


M. J. McGrath. 


U.S.A. 


1910 






U.S.A. " 


1912 








1911 


141 4l 


M. J. Sheridan. 


U.S.A. 


1913 


i8 9 "6i 


P. J. Ryan. 


U.S.A. 


1912 145 9i 


J. Duncan. 




1914 








8 feet 2$ in. 


1915 








Circle 


1916 
1917 








1912 
1913 


156 if 
156 iif 


J. Duncan. 
A. Taipale. 


U.S.A. 
Germany. 


1918 








1914 






.... 


1919 








1915 








1920 








1916 








1921 








1917 








1922 








1918 








1923 








1919 








1924 








1920 








1925 








1921 








1926 








1922 








1927 








1923 








1928 








1924 
















1925 
1926 


157 ii 
158 it 


G. H. Hartranft. 
C. Houser. 


U.S.A. 










1927 
















1928 


1 60 0} 


H. Hoffmeister. 


Germany. 



356 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 

TABLE I. continued. 



THROWING THE JAVELIN 



Prior 
to 

1880 








1880 








1881 








1882 








1883 








1884 








1885 








1886 








1887 








1888 








1889 








1890 








1891 








1892 








1893 








1894 








1895 








1896 








1897 








1898 








1899 








1900 








1901 








1902 








'1903 








1904 








1905 








1906 








1907 








1908 


179 10} 


E. Lemming. 


Sweden. 


1909 








1910 


I8 5 " 2} 


E. Lemming. 


Sweden. 


1911 


191 2j 


E. Lemming. 


Sweden. 


1912 


200 I \ I 


J. J. Saaristo. 


Finland. 




204 5l 


E. Lemming. 


Sweden. 


1913 








1914 








1915 


212 7 J 


J. Myrrha. 


Finland. 


1916 








1917 








1918 








1919 


216 lOf 


J. Myrrha. 


Finland. 


1920 








1921 








1922 








1923 








1924 








1925 








1926 








1927 


218 6} 


G. Lindstrom. 


Sweden. 


.... 


229 34 


E. Penttila. 


Finland. 


1928 


232 IIH 


E. H. Lundkvist. 


Sweden. 



357 



(A 

H 

85 

w 





& & 

~ Is 

w 5$ 

] ^ r , 

w &.S 

S S! 

H) O 



(X 

I 



68, 

+ M 



I* 

CO 0s 



fr - 
fe o 



zi " 

Sa 



O 00 



2 * 

3a 



en 

J$ 



d 
W 



y 

rn 
^ 



OMt^MCOTfCO d 



+j O tO CO O* M CO OOO 
CL, CH M rf OO >O H 



fj * IC P 

^OMt^.c^lcOON dOOMMMO OO 



CO CO ^OO COO 



fl rt- M H 10 

4J O * N 00 O ONOO 00 



CO r^l . ,, 

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IO IO H IO ^ M 

M * " S"2^ 



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_ _ MMOOOHO 

rf IO M iO ^ M M 

M <* 4J iO ^t- M t^OO OO 00 

fj. (S M Tf Tf O d 

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M M rf H 10 



S* ^usHoo c Vi-<H<!-4 ^IH 
c< o cr> ^ co ^ M 

fr. W M Tf TfO H 

^ MM 



.|J \/^ Q Q 1OO IO 

Cjj C^ M Tf CO O\ 



WM 



8888828 

M W Tf 00 IO M Tf 
H 

358 



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X 

M 

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Q 
Z 

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S 





2! 
s 

o 
a 

o 
z 



^ 
a> 



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"8 






3 

d 
d 



15 

O o 

1s 

3 



c 

PQ 



a 
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d 
W 



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r/J O H 

"* : H 



o\oo^ >n N i co co o^i 

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jj O ^ CO 0> 0>O N 



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JJ o o TTZn 
\Ji ,2 M ** to i 

H H CO 



b.. N 



M 00 ONOCOOWO in "t 1 H 

: M : N : ^ : 10 o " ~ 



)iO ^ ^ drOHH OOOco 

t- M : H : o M M : H 
)o w H 



H ' ' <** ' ' M 



CXXJ 

b 



4J "O >O CO 0^00 N N 



d \o -t-o> M o 

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4J O OCOO N , . 
pE, N H ir>iONiO 



fr, M 
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^00 ( 

oo 10 < 

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oooooooooSjSoo^oooo 
OONO^OOOO 'O OOOWH^O 

M H N 't^OOCO HMfOOHHMMTj-^- 

359 




O 

o i 

o q 

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^ 

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d 



(A J 

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f f< "8 

4) Ex 

22 q 

l * 



ATHLETICS 



TABLE IV 

COMPARATIVE TABLE OF METRES AND YARDS, 
AND RELATIVE TIMES AND SPEEDS 

A. Common distances : 

Metres. Yards. 

100 = 109-36 
no 120-30 

200 = 218-72 

400 = 437*45 

800 = 874-89 

1500 = 1640-42 (i.e. 1 19-58 yds. short of I mile) 

1600 == 1749-72 (i.e. 10-22 yds. short of i mile; common 

relay event, 4 X 400 metres) 

5000 = 5468-07 (i.e. 3 miles 188 yards) 

10000 = 6 miles 276 yards 

B. Relative times : 

As will be observed, the no metres hurdles corresponds almost exactly 
with the 120 yards hurdles as run in England and America. It is also 
possible to contrast times for the 220 yards flat with the 200 metres as run 
on the Continent and in the Olympic Games. But over longer distances 
greater adjustments have to be made when effecting comparisons 
between, say, British and French times. Thus : 

The corresponding time for 440 yards is obtained by adding about 
fV of a second to that taken for 400 metres, and, of course, vice versa. 
by subtraction. 

For 880 yards by adding about ^ of a second to the time for 800 
metres. 

For i mile by adding about 3/4ists of the time for 1500 meters : e.g. 
4 minutes for 1500 metres represents 4 minutes 17$ seconds for i mile ; 
3'53i (Olympic record) represents 4 minutes loj seconds (world's record 
being 4 minutes lof seconds) ; 4.30 represents 4 minutes 50 seconds, etc. 
etc. 

For 3 miles by subtracting about 2/55ths of the time taken for 5000 
metres (188 yards more than 3 miles) : e.g. 15 minutes i second for 5000 
metres represents 14 minutes 30 seconds for 3 miles. 

C. Pace : 

It may be of interest to notice the actual speed in yards per second 
of various performances. It is surely rather wonderful, and indeed 
somewhat curious, that a man can run at a speed in excess of the legal 
speed limit in England ; and it is apparent that before long some one 
will run 12 miles within the hour, and we believe that Nurmi is capable 
of this feat. 

360 



RECORDS AND STATISTICS 

TABLE IV. continued. 



Distance. 


Time. 


Average Speed. 


World's Records. 


Yds. per 
second. 


Miles 
per hour. 


Yds. 


M. S. 








IOO 


10 


10 


20j 






9t 


K>T* 


2lf 


9} sees, is world's record, held by 










C. W. Paddock and four others. 


44 


48A 


9 


i8J 






o 

47t 


9t 


19 


47} sees, is J. E. Meredith's world's 










record. 


880 


2 


7* 


15 






I 52 


7* . 


16 


Dr. O. Peltzer's world's record is 










i min. 51 f sees. 


i mile 


4 30 


6 


131 






4 10 


7 


I4l 


Nurmi's world's record is 4 min. 










i of sees. 


ii miles 
1 648 yds. 


>i hour 






Nurmi's record, made 7th October 
1928. 



D. Comparative tables : 

i centimetre =-393 7 inches (ff in.) ; i metre = 3- 28 feet (3 ft. 3f ins.) 
or 1-09 yds. 

i inch =2-54 cm. or -0254 metres ; i foot =-3048 metres ; i yard = -9144 
metres. 



HIGH JUMP. 


LONG JUMP. 


POLE JUMP. 


Ft. 


Metres. 


Ft. 


Metres. 


Ft. 


Metres. 


5'3 


i -60 


20 


6-095 


10 


3-05 


5'5 


1-65 


21 


6-401 


ii 


3'35 


5*6 


1-676 


21-6 


6-553 


12 


3-66 


5'7 


1-702 


22 


6705 


12-6 


3-8i 


5'8 


1-727 


22-6 


6-857 


12-9 


3-89 


5'9 


1-753 


22'9 


6-934 


13 


396 


5-io 


1-778 


23 


701 


I3'3 


4-04 


5-n 


1-803 


23-3 


7-086 


I3'6 


4-12 


6-0 


1829 


23-6 


7-163 


13-9 


4-19 


6-1 


1-854 


23-9 


7-239 


14 


4-27 


6-2 


1-88 


24 


7-3I5 


I4'3 


4-34 


6-3 


1-905 


24-3 


7-392 


14-6 


4-42 


6-4 


1-93 


24-6 


7-468 




6-5 


1-956 


24-9 


7-544 




6-6 


1-98 


25 


7-62 




6-7 


2-006 


25-3 


7*697 




6-8 


2-032 


25*6 


7'773 




6-9 


2-057 


25-9 


7-849 






26- 


7-926 






26-3 


8.002 





361 



ATHLETICS 

TABLE IV. continued. 



HOP, STEP AND JUMP ; PUTTING 


THROWING THE 


HAMMER, Discus 


THE 


WEIGHT. 


AND 


JAVELIN. 


Metres. 


Ft. Ins. 


Metres. 


Ft. Ins. 


14 


= 45 "i 


45 


= 147 7l 


14*50 


= 47 7 


50 


= 164 oj 


15 


= 49 2j 


55 


= i 80 5f 


15-20 


= 49 ioj 


60 


= 196 loj 


15-40 


= 50 6J 


65 


= 213 6| 


15-60 


= 51 2j 


70 


== 229 8 


15-80 


= 51 9j 


75 


== 246 of 


16 


= 52 6 


80 


= 262 5| 



362 



INDEX 



A. A. A., formation, 12 ; champion- 
ships, 13, and vide Championships ; 
laws, 13 ; powers, 13 ; affiliation 
of clubs, 13 ; registration of 
meetings, 13 ; and N.C.U., 14 ; 
decentralisation, 14-5 ; and 
I.A.A.F., 39, 53 ; and foreign 
tours, 54 ; rules for competition, 
vide each event 

A.A.C., ii 

A.A.U., 62, 63, 65, 66, and vide 
Championships 

Abrahams, Dr. A., 107 

Abrahams, H. M., viii, 46-7, 135, 237 

Abrasions, no 

Achilles Club, 16, 18, 19, 20, 32, 56, 
58, 59, 60, 323 

Actian Games, 7 

^Eschylus, 6 

Africa, Olympic Games in, 50 ; 
South, vide South Africa 

Age for athletics, 30, 104, 202, 305 

Ajax, 25 

Alcohol, 96-7, 109, 1 68 

Amateurism, 39-42, 81-3 

America, athletics in, 17, 19, 60, 
61-9, 83-4, 159, and vide Cham- 
pionships, A.A.U., I.C.A.A.A.A., Barbuti, R., 48 
etc. ; in Olympic Games, 30., 44-8, Barnes, L., 263 
62, 63, 216 ; schoolboys in, 17, ~~ 
68-9 ; coaches in, 276 

American athletes, prowess of, 
68-9 ; comparison with English 
athletes, 35, 63, 65-6, 68-9 

American records, 336-8, 359 ; com- 
parison of indoor and outdoor, 
336-7 ; I.C.A.A.A.A., 345 

Amsterdam, 22, 135, 202, 210-11, 
216, 281, 313 ; Olympic Games 
at, 47-9, 313 

Anglo-Saxon style in distance 
races, 196 

Antwerp, Olympic Games at, 45-6, 

53 

Appendix, 325-62 
Applegarth, W. R., 135, 159 
Arabia, games in, 2 



Archery, 7, 9, 10, 25 

Argentina, 59 

Aristotle, 30 

Arm action, vide each event 

Art, athletics and, 28, 33-5, 43 

Asia, games in, 2, 23, 84 ; Inter- 
national athletics in, 57-9 

Association football, vide Football 

Atalanta Club, 60 

Athens, 5-6, 30-2, 202 ; Olympic 
Games at, 37, 38, 43-4, 135, 216, 
232, 248 

" Athletic," derivation of, 70 

Athletics, history of, vide Ch. I ; 
international, vide Ch. Ill ; for 
boys, vide Ch. XV ; for women, 
vide Ch. XV; as recreation, 53, 55, 

57, 83-4 

Atkinson, S. J. M., 47-8, 214-6 
Australia, 60- 1 
Australasian records, 343 
Automatic performance, 132, 235, 

273-4 
Averoff, M., 37 

BAILLET-LATOUR, Count, 38 
Baker, P. J., 19, 165 



" Barre, casting the," 9 

Baths, 100, 199 

Baton, 120, 297, 300-3 

Belgium, 18, 54, 57, 209, 210 

Berlin, 38, 45 

Birchfield Harriers, 15 

Blackheath Harriers, 16 

Blisters, no, 204 

" Born athlete," the, 72 

Bouin, J., 45 

Bowman, C., 136 

Boxing, 5, 25, 31, 42, 51, 62 

Boys, athletics for, 5, 30, 69, 80, 
and vide Ch. XV ; and medical 
examination, 103, 320 ; training 
for, 103-4 1 events, 320, 322 ; 
pole vault for, 263, 270 ; and vide 
Schools 



363 



INDEX 



Bradley, C. A., 134 

Braun, H., 55, 164-5 

Brazil, 59 

Bredin, E. C., 165 

British Empire v. U.S.A., Relay 

Match, 19-20, 61, 68, 211, 336 
British India, vide India 
British Olympic Association, 40-1 
British records, 136, 335-6, 341-2, 

359 . 

Broad jump, vide Long jump 
Broken time, 40 
Bropkins, C. R., 230 
Bruises, in 
Brunhiide, 8 
Budapest, 56 

Burghley, Lord, 48, 214-5, 231 
Butler, G. M., 166 

C&stus, 5, 25, 31-2 

Cambridge, Sports, n, 18 ; v. Ox- 
ford, vide Oxford; v. American 
Universities, vide Oxford and 
Cambridge ; and Achilles Club, 18 

Canada, athletics in, 60, 293 ; and 
Empire Games, 61 ; and Olympic 
Games, 45-7, 6 1, 135, 159 ; records, 

343 
Carriage of head and body, vide each 

event 

Celts and field events, 59 
Championships, A. A. A., n, 13, 17, 

20 ; County, 15 ; Inter-County, 

15 ; American, 18, 61-2 ; I.C.A.- 

A.A.A., 63-4 ; relays in A. A. A., 

20 ; foreign entry in A. A. A., 21 ; 

and vide each event 
Change over in relays, vide Baton 
Chariot-racing, 5, 6, 25, 29, 32-3 
Chase, the, 2, 7, 9 
Chile, 59 
China, 58 
C.I.E. (Confederation Internationale 

d'Etudiants), 17, 56 
Civil Service, u 
Clothes, 126-7 

Clubs, inter-club matches, 19-20 
Coaches, 66, 276 ; in tug-of-war, 

3<>5-6 

Coaffee, C. H., 136 
Coasting, in 220 yards, 159-60 
Columbia, 64 
Combining events, 178-9 
Competition as the key to athletics, 

70-1, 77 
Contents, ix-x 
Continent, games on, vide Europe 



Co-ordination, 87 ; vide each event 

Copenhagen, 18, 56 

Corks, 128 

Corinth, games at, 5, 27, 33 

Cornell, 64 ; v. Oxford and Cam- 
bridge, 67-8 

Cornering, 160-1 

Corcebus, 3, 27 

Corts, R., 135 

Coubertin, Baron P. de, 36 

County movement in England, 14-5, 
18, 20 

Cramp, in 

Cricket ball, throwing the, 292 

Cross-country, 16, 57 ; shoes for, 
125 ; international, 57, 209 ; in 
U.S.A., 62, 64, 209 ; Ch. VIII, 
utility for track- work, 198-9, 
206-7 1 style, 207 ; obstacles, 
207-8 ; stamina, 208 ; training, 
208 ; packs, 209 ; scoring and 
team-work, 209 ; for women, 209 

Cross. F. J. K., 165 

Crouch start, vide Sprinting, etc. 

Cycling, 14, 42; and A. A. A., 14 

Czecho-Slovakia, 17, 56-7 

DANCING, 10, 24, 99 

Decathlon record, 330 

Delphi, 5, 26-7, 32-3 

Denmark, 18, 293 

Diet, 91-4, 167-8, 205, 275, 321-2 ; 
on day of competition, 94 

Discus, in ancient Olympic Games, 
5. I7 2 5. 3> 3 1 ; modern, 8, 114 ; 
Ch. XI, pp. 285-9 ; the missile, 
285-6 ; footwork, 288 and Fig.35 ; 
the throw, 286-8 and Fig. 34 

Distance races, Ch. VIII, pp. 193- 
21 1 ; long-distance running, 193- 
202 ; Marathon, 202-6 ; cross- 
country, 206-10 ; steeplechase, 

210-11 

Distance running, long-, tempera- 
ment and physique of long-distance 
runner, 193-4 I distances, 194-5 > 
to schedule, 195 ; style in, 195, 
196-8 ; stamina, 198-9 ; training, 
199-200 ; stride, 200 ; pace, 200- 
201 

Ditch, vide Cross-country 

Dominions, 41, 47-8, 59-61, 84 ; 
records, 343-4 ; and vide respective 
countries 

Dorando, 45, 203 

Drake relays, 297 

Dressing-rooms, 115 



364 



INDEX 



Drew, H. P., 136 
Drop finish, 154-5 
Drugs, 108-9 
Dublin, 59 
Duffey, A. F., 134 
Dumb-bells, 99, 157, 293 

EASING-UP, 155, 177 

East, the, vide Asia and Far-Eastern 

Olympic Games 
Eastern form, vide High jump 
Economy of effort, 168-9 
Ecuador, 59 
Education, athletics and, 9-10, 16-7, 

30, 80, 84 ; Ch. XV ; and vide also 

Gymnasia 

Edward, H. F. V., 135 
Edwards, P., 164-5 
Egypt, games in, 2 
Ells, the Eleians, 3, 4, 25-7, 29 
Elizabethan age, games in, 10. 
Ellis, C., 68, 165 
Embrocation, 101, 109 
Empire Games, 61 
Endocrine glands, 71-2, 108, 311, 

3H 
England, athletics in, n, 63, 80, 

83-4, 209, 293 ; v. France, 54; 

v. Germany, 56 ; v. Scotland, v. 

Ireland, 18, 59 

English Field Events Association, 17 
English native records, 341 
Equipment, Ch. V, pp. 122-9, and 

vide Impedimenta 
Eton, 134 
Euripides, 4, 6, 33 
Europe, games in Central, 8 ; con- 
tinent of, n, 21, 53-7, 83 
Ewry, R., 247, 261 
Exercises, training, 97-9; and vide 

each event 

FAR-EASTERN Olympics, 49, 50, 58-9 

F.F.A. (F<$de"ration Fran9aise 
d'Athtetisme), 39 

Feet, care of, no, 204 

Fence, vide Cross-country 

Fencing, 9, 10, 25, 42, 51, 62 

Ferris, S., 205 

Field events, in A.A.A. Champion- 
ships, 17-8 ; on team principle, 
19 ; Japanese and, 58 ; Irish and 
Scots, 59 ; competition in, com- 
pared with track events, 234-5 ; 
and vide each event 

F.I.F.A., 40 

1500 metres, vide Mile 



Finish, vide Sprinting, Middle- 
distance running, Hurdling, etc. 

Finishing posts, 119 

Finland, and Olympic Games, 45-9 ; 
and international athletics, 57 ; 
records, 339, 359 

Finnish style in distance races, 
197-8 

Fitness, physical, 75, 86-9 ; mental, 
89-91 

Fives, 98, 199 

Flight, vide Long jump 

Football, 10, 45 ; Association, 40, 
41 ; Rugby, 42 ; F.I.F.A., 40 

Footwork, vide Ch. XI 

France, 17, 18, 54, 209 ; F.F.A., 39 ; 
the Olympic Games and, 44, 45, 
49 ; records, 339, 359 ; inter- 
national athletics, 54-5, 57 ; v. 
Belgium, 54 ; v. England, 54 ; 
v. Germany, 54 ; v. Sweden, 54 ; v. 
Switzerland, 54 

Frigerio, U., 56 

GABY, F. R., 214-5 

Games, vide Olympic Games ; 
mechanised, 55 

Gardner, P., 34-5 

Gargantua, 9 

General Committee, vide A.A.A. 

General principles, Ch. IV 

George, W. G., 67, 166, 193, 196 

German and British teams, 56 

German Students Union, 55 

Germany, in A.A.A. Championships, 
2I 55 *35 I * n Olympic Games, 
38, 47-8 ; international competi- 
tion, 54-6 ; gymnasia, 17, 57 ; 
v. France, 54-5 ; v. Great Britain, 
56 ; v. Switzerland, 54-5 ; walk- 
ing in, 293 ; records, 340, 359 

Gibbon, 6 

Gitsham, 45 

Goehring, W., 261 

Golf, 199 

" Go-as-you-please " races, 195 

" Graded races/' 20-1 

Great Britain, athletics in, 1 1 ; and 
international competition, 54, 56, 
6 1 ; and Olympic Games, 40, 41, 
44-8, 135; records, 136, 335-6, 

34I- 2 ' 359 
Greece, games in, vide Olympic 

Games, Chs. I and II 
Greek art, 34-35 
Guillemot, 46 
Gun, 1 20 ; beating the, 145 



365 



INDEX 



Gymnasia, in Greece, 29, 30-1, 34 ; 

in Germany, 17, 57 
Gymnastics, 42, 62, 264 

HABITS, 74, 76, 95-6 

Hahn, A., 159 

Hahn, L., 68, 165 

Half-mile, the, vide Ch. VII, pp. 162- 

179,184-9; pace knowledge, 185, 

187 ; theory of pace, 185-7 ; 

tactics, 187-9 ; training, 184 ; 

women, 313 

Halswelle, Capt., 45, 165 
Hammer, throwing the, vide Ch. XI, 

pp. 281-5 ; the missile, 281-2 ; 

the throw, 282-5 and Fig. 32 ; 

footwork, 284-5 and Fig. 33 ; and 

PP- 9. *7, 59, H4 

Handicaps, 20-1 

Hares and hounds, viefe Cross-country 

Harvard, 64-6 ; and Yale v. Oxford 
and Cambridge, 67 

Hayes, 203 

" Healthy bodies and healthy 
minds," 73, 80 

Heart, 106, 107, 310, 311 

Heel spikes, 124-5, 214-5, 242, 250 

Hellanodicae, 29 

Henry V, 9, 10 

Henry VIII, 9 

Hera, games to, 4, 30 

Hercules, 26, 34 

Herodotus, 2 

Hesiod, 25 

High jump, vide Ch. X, pp. 250- 
260 ; the " scissors," 250-1 ; the 
"Eastern," 251, 252-5, 257-8, Figs. 
15-19 ; " Western roll," 251-2, 
255-8, Fig. 20 ; " lay-out," 251, 
2 55-7 training for, 258 ; prac- 
tice, 258-60 ; competition, 260 ; 
and pp. 59, 62, 64, 113, 118 

High jump, standing, 62, 261-2 

Highland Games, 8, 59, 60 

Hill, A. G., 45, 165 

Hill, Prof. A. V., 103, 106-7, 200, 
272 

Hill, W. A., 135 

"Hills, 'vide Cross-country and Road 
walking 

History of athletics, vide Ch. I ; 
ancient, 2-7 ; mediaeval, 7-11 ; 
modern, 11-22 

Hitch-kick style, vide Long jump 

Hockey, 42-3 

Hodges, P., 46 

Hoffmeister, H., 289 (n) 



Hold, of missile, vide Throwing 
(Ch. XI) ; of baton, vide Baton 

Holes, starting, 141-3, 218 

Homer, 24-6 

Hop, step and jump, 17, 113-4; 
vide Ch. X, pp. 247-50 ; training 
for, 248-9 ; divisions, 248, 249-50 ; 
speed and spring, 249 

Houser, C., 288-9 

House runs, 320 

" Hundred-up," 156-7 

Hundred yards, vide Sprinting 

Hungary, 56 

Hunting, vide Chase 

Hurdles, 17, 62, 64, 117-8, and 
Ch. IX on grass, 212 ; jumping 
and sprinting, 212-4, 218 ; shoes, 
214-5 ; straight-leg style, 215-7, 
220-5, and Figs. 7-12 ; start, 
217-9 ; first 15 yards ; number of 
strides, 219-20 ; detail of hurd- 
ling, 220-5 ; 10 yards between 
hurdles, 225-6 ; last 15 yards and 
finish, 226-8 ; training, 228-30 ; 
rules, 230 ; 220 yards hurdles, 
230-1 ; 440 yards hurdles, 232-3 ; 
indoors, 213 ; women's event, 2 13, 
313 ; in steeplechase, 211 ; track 
and impedimenta, 217, 231, 232 

I.A.A.F., 39, 53-4. "7. 120, 313 

Illinois A.C., 297 

Impedimenta, vide Ch. V, pp. 116- 

121 ; fixtures, 117-8; officials, 

119-20 ; athletes, 120-1 
India, 58, 61 

Individual nature of athletics, 77-9 
Indoor athletics, 62, 64, 116, 125, 

194, 297, 336-7 ; tracks, 116 ; 

shoes, 125 ; records, 33 6 ~7 ' 

hurdles, 213 ; steeplechase, 213 ; 

standing long jump, 247 
Inge, Dean, 52 
Inter-city matches, 57 
Inter-club competition, 19, 20 
Inter-College meetings, 65 
Inter-Collegiate athletics (U.S.A.), 

63-9 
I.C. A. A. A. A. championships, 18, 62, 

64, 194 ; records, 345 
Inter-county championships, 15, 20 
International athletics, Ch. Ill; 
Federations, 39, 40 ; matches, 18, 
53, 8 1 ; Confederation of Stu- 
dents, 56 ; student games, 17, 
56 ; regulations, 53-4 ; records, 
vide Countries 



366 



INDEX 



I.O.C. (International Olympic Com- 
mittee), 37-40, 47, 59 

I.V.A.B. (Inter-'Varsity Athletic 
Board), 19, 60 ; records, 346 

Intra-mural athletics in English and 
American Universities, 65 

Iphitus, 3, 26-8 

Ireland, games in, 2, 7-8, 18, 59, 246 

Irish Free State and Olympic Games, 
48, 60 ; and international com- 
petition, 57, 59-60, 209 ; records, 
342 

Isaiah, 2 

Isthmian Games, 5, 27 

Italy, 46, 56, 293 

ACKSON, A. N. S,, 45, 68, 166 
'ames I, treatises of, 10 
apan and Olympic Games, 21, 49 
ava, 58 

avelin, throwing the, 5, 7, 8, 9, 17, 
25. 30. 3i. H4> Ch. XI, pp. 289- 
292 ; the missile, 121, 289 ; the run- 
up, 289-90, Fig. 36 ; the throw, 
290-2, and Fig. 37 
Jeremiah, 2 
Jones, J. P., 165 
Judges' enclosure, 115 ; stand, 119 ; 

cards, 120 
Judges in Olympic Games, 29, 31, 

32 ' 

Jumping, Ch. X, vide each event 
" Jumping " an opponent, 173 
Jumping shoes, 125 

KELLY, D., 136 
Kerr, R., 45, 134 
Kinnaird Cup, 16 
Kipling, R., 6 
Knee-lift, 153, 171, 197 
Kolehmainen, H., 45, 46, 57, 203, 209 
Kornig, H., 135, 159 
Kraenzlein, A. C., 44, 214-6, 230 
Kuck, J., 281 

L.A.C. (London Athletic Club), u, 
15, 134 ; championship meeting, 
12; schoolboys, 16 ; matches, 
20; v. N.Y.A.C., 66-7 

Ladoume'gue, 166 

Lampadedromia, 6 

Landon, R. W., 257 

Landskamp, Scandinavian, 18, 57 

Lanes, 112-3, 181-2, 300, 304 

Lawn tennis, vide Tennis 

Lay, S. A., 290 

" Lay-out/' vide High jump, 255-7 



Leading in races, vide Middle- 
distance races, 183, 187, and 
Relays, 298-9 

League of Nations, 52 

Lecture demonstrations, 322-3 

Leg action, vide each event 

Legg, W. B. f 135 

Lewden, P., 257-8 

Liddell, E. H., 46-7, 135, 162, 166 

Lillie Bridge, n, 15 

Limbering-up, 99, and vide each 
event 

Lippincott, D. F., 135 

Literature and athletics, 3, 28, 

33-4. 43 

Livy, 7 

Locke, R. A., 136, 159 

London, Olympic Games at, 44-5 

London, J. E., 135, 155, 262 

Long-distance running, vide Distance 
running 

Long jump, 8, 9, 10, 18, 31, 64, 113, 
114, Ch. X, pp. 234-46; history, 
234 ; automatic nature, 235 ; 
sprinting for, 235-7 ' s P rin g. 236 ; 
training, 236-7, 238-9 ; the run- 
up, 237-41 ; the take-off, 241-2 ; 
the board, 241 ; the flight, 
242-6 ; hitch-kick style, 244-6, 
and Fig. 14 ; landing, 246 ; 
tape measure, 128 ; standing 
long jump, 246-7 

Loud speakers, 119 

Loues, 203 

Lowe, D. G. A., 46, 48 

Ludi Publici, 6-7. 

Lundquist, E. H., 292 

Lutyens, W. E., 165 

Lycurgus, stadium of, 3, 26, 30 

Lydia, games in, 2 

Lysander, 29 

M* ARTHUR, 45 

Madeira, L., 68 

Manila, 58 

Marathon, the, 15, 31, 44, 45 ; 
running, Ch. VIII, pp. 202-6 ; 
history, 202-3 ' medical examina- 
tion for, 203 ; style, 203-4 ' shoes 
and socks, 204 ; training, 204-5 ; 
stamina, 205 ; diet, 205 ; com- 
petition, 205-6 

Martin, S., 165 

Massage, 100-1 

M.C. A.A.A., 14 

McAllister, R., 135 

McKenzie, Dr. Tait, 35 



367 



INDEX 



Measures, 119-20, 128, 240 

Measuring track, 115 ; throws, 279 

Medical considerations, Ch. V, pp. 
103-11 ; boys, 103-4 ; systems 
of the body, 104-8 ; drugs, 108-9 ; 
medicine, 109 ; stateness, 109- 
110; injuries, etc., no-i; ex- 
amination, 103, 203 

Medicine, 30, 109 

Medley relay, vide Relays 

Megaphones, 119 

Mental aspect of athletic training, 

75-7> 89-91 

Meredith, J. E., 45, 164, 165, 186 

Method, 74, 76 

Metres and yards, comparative 
table, 360-2 

Mexico, 59 

Middle-distance running, Ch. VII; 
general principles, 162-79 ; events 
included, 162-3 ; types of runner, 
163-7; training, 167-8, 177-8; 
style, 168-72 ; head and body 
carriage, 169-70 ; arm action, 
170-1 ; leg action and stride, 
171-2 ; technique, 172-7 ; start, 
172-3 ; finish, 173, 177 ; " jump- 
ing," 173 I knowledge of pace, 
*73-5 planning races, 174-5 ; 
tactics, 175-7 ; combining events, 
178-9 ; and vide Quarter, Half, 
and One mile 

Mile, the, and 1500 metres, 163, 
189-92 ; need for speed, 190-1 ; 
pace changes, 190 ; stamina, 191 ; 
the third lap, 191-2 ; finishing, 192 

Mills, 205 

Milo, 29, 31 

Mind, the, 71, 72, 75, 76 

Missiles, vide Shot, Hammer, Javelin, 
Discus 

Moderation, by women, 311 ; by 
boys, 319-20 

Moral aspect of athletics, 77-8 

Morton, J. W., 134 

Muscles, 105-6, no, 133, 199, 236, 
250, 258, 260, 272-3, 274-5, 310 

Music, 24, 25, 43 

Mussabini action, 170 

Myers, L. E., 67 

Myron, 34 

NAPLES, Imperial Games at, 7 
N.A.A.A.A., 61-2 
National aspect of athletics, 81 
National Athletic and Cycling Asso- 
ciation of Ireland, 59 



N.C.A.A.A., 14 

N.C.C.U., 209 

National Collegiate A. A., 63 

National Olympic Councils, 39-41 

National records, 335-40 

Nemean Games, 5, 27 

Nervous energy, 133, 311, 312, 314; 

system, 105 
Nervousness, 90, 108 
Newton, A., 195 

NewiYorkA.C.,6i,66; v.L.A.C.,66-7 
New Zealand, 60, 61 ; records, 343 
Nicotine, vide Smoking 
Nokes, M. C, viii, Ch. XI 
Norman England, athletics in, 9 
Norway, 18 
Nurmi, 46, 48, 57, 125, 166, 171, 

196-8, 202, 209 

OBSTACLES, vide Cross - country, 
207-8 

O'Callaghan, Dr., 48 

Oda, M., 49, 248 

Olive wreaths, 32 

Olympia, 3, 26, 32-4 

Olympic Games : Ancient, 2-5, 23-36 ; 
institution, 3, 24, 26 ; sacred 
truce, 3, 26-8 ; participation, 3, 
31 ; judges, 29, 31, 32 ; women 
in, 3-4, 29-30 ; abolition, 4, 28 ; 
idealism, 4, 33, 35-6 ; events, 
4-5, 27, 30-2 ; dates, 27 ; boys 
in, 5, 30 ; training, 30 ; oath, 
31. Modern, 36-52, 83 ; ideal- 
ism, 33, 36, 52 ; venues, 37-8 ; 
organisation, 38-43 ; I.O.C., 38- 
40 ; programme, 41-3 ; per- 
formances at, 43-91 and vide 
each event ; women in, 22, 49 ; 
treatment of victors, 32; ap- 
preciation of, 50-2 ; and vide 
Chs. I and II; Shakespeare on, 
10 ; and Empire Games com- 
pared, 6 1 ; in Far East, 49 

Olympic records, 330-1, 359 ; and 
vide events 

Olympic results, comparative table, 

358 

Olympic winners (1896-1928), 331-4 

Osborne, H. M,, 256, 257 

Oslo, 18, 57 

Oxford, Sports, u, 18 ; and Achilles 
Club, 1 8 ; v. American Univer- 
sities, vide Oxford and Cambridge 

Oxford v. Cambridge Sports, n, 12, 
19, 65 ; records, 344 ; relays, 18, 
20 



INDEX 



Oxford and Cambridge tours, 56, 

66-9 
Oxford and Cambridge v. Harvard 

and Yale, 67 ; records, 345 ; 

v. Princeton and Cornell, 67 ; at 

Penn. relays, 68 
Oxygen, 106, 200, 310-1 



PACE, knowledge of, 173-5, 185-8, 
200-1, 205, 233 ; theory of, in 
half-mile, 185-7 , uniformity of, 
106-7, 185-6, 195, 200-1 ; varia- 
tions in, 190, 201-2 ; Table IV, 
pp. 360-2 

Packs in Cross-country, 209 

Paddock, C. W.. 135-6, 155 

Panathenaea, 5-6 

Panhellenic meeting, 38, 44 

Pankration, 5, 32 

Paper-chasing, 206, and vide Cross- 
country 

Paris, Olympic Games at, 42, 44, 46, 
57 *35 ; student games at, 56 

Patching, G. H., 134 

Patriotism, 52 

Patroclus, funeral games of, 3, 24-5 

Paul, St, 5 

Pausanias, 30, 32 

Felling, E. H., 134 

Peltzer, Dr. O., 56, 165-6, 186, 197 

Pennsylvania, University of, 35, 
64-5, 68 ; relays, 68, 297 

Pentathlon, 5, 31 ; modern, 42 

Pepys, 10 

Peru, 59 

Pheidias, 34 

Phidippides, 31, 202 

Philippine Islands, 49, 58 

Philosophers and the gymnasia, 
30-1 

Physical aspect of athletics, 74-5 

Physical culture, 55 

Physique of sprinters, 133-4; f 
long-distance runners, 193-4 f 
hurdlers, 213-4; of women and 
men, 310 

Pindar, 32-4 

Pistol, vide Gun 

Planning races, 174-5 

Plato, 31 

Plough, vide Cross-country 

Poetry, 3, 33-4 

Points, standard, 320-1 ; vide 
Scoring 

Poland, 56-8 

Pole jump or vault, 18, 62, 64, 113, 
114, 1 18-9, and Ch. X, pp. 262-70 ; 

2 A 369 



history of, 262-3 ; among boys, 
263, 270 ; training, 263-4 ; para- 
phernalia for, 264-5 ; the vault, 
266-8, and Figs. 21-9 ; competi- 
tion, 269-70 

Poles, 121, 264-5 

Polo, 42, 44 

Polyclitus, 34 

Polytechnic Harriers, 15, 20, 56, 203 

Praxiteles, 34 

Preface, vii-viii 

Princeton, 64-6 ; and Cornell v. Ox- 
ford and Cambridge, 67-8 

Prizes, 25, 26, 29, 32 

Professionalism, 6, 10, 60, 82-3 

Public Schools Sports, 16 ; records, 
34? 

Putting the weight, vide Weight 

Pythian Games, 5, 27 



QUALITIES essential to success in 
athletics, 75 ff. 

Quarter-mile, the, Ch. VII, pp. 162- 
184 ; as a middle-distance race, 
162 ; general principles, 163, and 
vide Middle - distance running ; 
training, 167-8, 179-80; tactics, 
175-7, 181-4 ; in lanes, 181-2 ; in 
America, 181-2 ; leading in, 183 

Quarter, second in half - mile, a 
constant, 185-6 

Queen's Club, 15, 18, 19, 67 

RABELAIS, 9 

Racing Club de France, 54 
Record breaking, 83-4, 320-1 
Records, vide Appendix ; world's, 
325-30 ; Olympic, 330-1 ; national, 
335-40 ; British and Dominion, 
341-4 ; University, 344-6 ; public 
schools, 346 ; women's, 347 ; pro- 
gress of world's, Table I, pp. 348- 
357 ; comparative table of world's 
and national, 359 

Relay races, 6, 16 ; British Empire 
v. U.S.A., 19-20 ; Oxford v. 
Cambridge, 18, 20 ; inter-county, 
15, 20 ; in A. A. A. Champion- 
ships, 20 ; in U.S.A Champion- 
ships, 62 ; in I.C.A.A.A.A. Cham- 
pionships, 64 ; Penn. relays, 68, 
297 

Relay racing, Ch. XIII, 296-304 ; 
future of, 296 ; field events, 19, 
296 ; in U.S.A., 297, 302, 30 
baton, vide Baton ; shuttle, 29 
tactics in, 298-9 ; lanes, 300, 304 ; 



INDEX 



, change over, 300-3, and Figs. 38, 
39 ; distances, 296, 304 ; order of 
running, 303 ; matches, 323 

Religion in athletics, 1-6, 23-8 

Respiratory system, 98, 107, 311 

Reverse, the, vide Weight 

Riding, 9, 42 

Ritola, W., 46, 57, 197-8, 202 

R.M.A., Woolwich, n 

R.M.C., Sandhurst, n 

Road Balking, vide Walking 

R.W,A. (Road Walking Associa- 
tion), 295 

" Rocking," 247, 261-2 

Roll, Western, vide High jump 

Rome, games in ancient, 6-7, 31-2 

Rope, vide Tug-of-war 

Rousseau, 9-10 

Rowing, 42 

Rudd, B. G. D., 19, 166-7 

Rugby football, vide Football 

Running outside, 176 

Run-up, vide Jumping 

Ryan, P. J., 285 

SANTIAGO, 59 

Saratoga, 63 

Scandinavia, vide Norway, Sweden 
and Denmark 

Schedule, running to, 195, 200-1 ; 
training to, 156, 204-5 

Scholarship and athletics, 72-3 

Scholz, J. V., 159 

Schools, 16-7, 68-9, and vide Ch. XV 

" Scissors " style, vide High jump 

Scoring, in Oxford v. Cambridge 
Sports, 64; in LC.A.A.A.A. 
Championships, 64 ; in Cross- 
country, 209 

Scotland, 18, 57, 59, 60, 209 

Scots and field events, 59 

Scottish A.A.A., 60 

Scottish records, 342 

Scott&h Universities, 19, 60 

Seutotttfje, 3, 28, 32, 34-5 

Secular Games, 7 

Self -confidence, 90 

Shakespeare, 10 

Shanghai, 58 

Shearman, Sir M., vii, 12 

Sheppard, M. W., 45, 166 

Shin soreness, in 

Shoes, 123*6, 158, 204, 214-5, 2*2, 
250, 395? spikes, 124-5; for 
hurdling, 124-5, 214-5 ; indoors, 
295 ; laces, 127 ; Marathon, 204 ; 
high jump, 260 ; walking, 295 



Shot, vide Weight 

Shuffling, vide Walking 

Shuttle relay, 298 

Siam, 58 

Siegfried, 8 

Simonides, 31, 33 

Simpson, R., 214 

600 yards, 184 

Skipping, 99, 157, 293 

Sleep, 97, 167, 322 

Slips, 128 

Smoking, 94-6 

Snook, W., 193 

Sokols, 17, 57 

Solon, 5, 30, 32 

South Africa, 45, 47-8, 61, 135 ; 
records, 344 

South America, 50, 59 ; champion- 
ships, 59 

Southern Committee A.A.A., 14 

S.L.H. (South London Harriers), 16 

Sparta, 3, 27-9, 33 ; women of, 4 

Specialisation, 52, 65-6, 68, 81, 83-4 

Speed, 75, 130-1, and vide each 
event 

Speeds, comparison of, Table IV, 
360-2 

Spikes, 124-5, and vide Shoes and 
Heel spikes 

Spirit of the game, the, 77 

Spiritual aspect of athletics, 77-8 

" Splits/' the, 228-9 

Sportsman and sportswoman, 78, 

o 3I *~ 5 
Sprains, no 

Spring, vide Jumping 

Sprint, when to, in half and one 
mile, 188-9, 192 

Sprinting, Ch. VI; introduction, 
130-8 ; appeal of, 130-1 ; auto- 
matic nature, 132 ; types and 
attributes of sprinters, 132-4 ; 
records, 135-6; style, 137-8 ; the 
start, I39-4 8 ; upright, 1 39*4 I 
crouch, 140-8 ; holes, 141-3 ; 
movements, 143-8 ; practice, 157 ; 
striding, 148-54 ; length of striae, 
147-8, 149; carriage, 150-3; 
arm action, 151-3 ; leg action, 
153-4 ' *b* fiafcfc* 154-5 ; train- 
ing, 156-8 ; the 220, 158-161 ; 
coasting, 159*60; stamina, 160; 
cornering, 160-1 

Squash, 98, 199 

St. Louis, Olympic Games at, 44 

Stade Francois, 54 

Stateness, 90, 96, 109-10, 199 



'370 



INDEX 



Stallard, H. B,, 166 

Stamford Bridge, 15, 18, 67, 202 

Stamina, 75, and vide each event 

Standing high jump, vide High 
jump 

Standing long jump, vide Long jump 

Starting, vide Sprinting, Hurdling 
and Middle-distance running 

Steeplechase, 62, 118, and Ch. VIII, 
210-11 ; in Great Britain, 210-11 ; 
international, 210-11; hurdling 
in, 211; water jump, 211 ; A.A.A. 
Rules, 211 ; indoors, 213 

Stenroos, 46, 203 

Stiffness, no 

Stitch, in, 208 

Stockholm, 18, 57, 135 ; Olympic 
Games at, 45 ; Women's Olym- 
piad at, 49, 221 

Straight leg, vide Hurdling 

Striding, length of stride, etc. ; vide 
each event 

Strutt, 10 

Style, vide each event 

Sugar, 92 

Surrey Walking Club, 295 

Sweden, 17, 18, 54 ; and Olympic 
Games, 44-7, 49 ; coaches in, 
276 ; records, 340, 359 

Swimming, 7, 9, 42, 51, 62, 100 

Switzerland and international ath- 
letics, 56 ; v. France and Ger- 
many, 54 

TABLES, vide Appendix, pp. 348-62 ; 
I, progress of worlds records 
since 1880, 348-57 ; II, compara- 
tive results in Olympic Games, 
358 ; III, comparative world and 
national records, 359 ; IV, com- 
parison of metres and yards, 
times and speeds, 360-2 

Tactics, vide each event 

Tailtean Games, 2, 7-8, 39 

Take-off, vide Jumping 

Tape measure, 240 

Tape, running through, 154, 177 

Team spirit, 77, 209, 296, 3*3 , 

Technique, vide each event 

Teeth, 108, 128 

Temperament, 133, 193-4* 278, 
314-5,318 , 

Ten miles, vide Long-distance run- 
ning 

Tendons, pulled, no 

Tennis, 9, 10 ; lawn, 42, 44, 98, 199 

Thames Hares and Hounds, 16 



Theory of pace, 185-7 

Theseus, 5, 30 

Thomson, E., 46, 214-6 

Three miles, vide Long-distance 
running 

Throwing, Ch, XI, pp. 271-92 ; 
general considerations, 271-8 ; 
evolution, 271 ; aesthetics of, 
271-2, 279, 285; analysis of, 
272-4 ; diet, 275 ; technique, 
275-0; mechanics of , 276 ; study, 
276-7; the will to win; 278; 
shotputt, g.v. sub-weight, 278- 
281 ; hammer, ,i/., 281-5; discus, 
q.v., 285-9; javelin, ,p., 289-92; 
cricket ball, q.v., 292 

Thucydides, 3, 4, 32 

Times, table of comparative, 360-2 

Timing, 120 

Tindall, H. C. L., 165 

Tokio, 58 

Tootell, F. D., 285 

Tracks, zn-6 ; shape and dimen- 
sions, 112-3 ; plan* .Fig- X \ field 
events, 113*4 ; making and care 
of, 115-6; measuring, 115; in- 
door tracks, 62, 116 

Trainers, 101-3 

Training, Ch. V, 85-111 ; common 
sense in, 85 ; general considera- 
tions, 86-91 ; aim, 87; quantity, 88 
177-8 ; individual treatment, 89; 
mental aspect, 89-91 ; worry, 89 ; 
" wind up," 90 ; self-confidence, 
90 ; judgment, 91 ; detailed con- 
siderations, 91-101 ; diet, 91-4 ; 
smoking, 94-6 ; alcohol, 96-7 ; 
exercises, 97-9 ; warmth, 99-100 ; 
baths, zoo ; massage, 100-1 ; 
trainers, q.v., 101-3 medical 
considerations, g.v., 103-11 ; and 
vide each event 

Training for ancient Olympic Games, 
30, 88 

Trowel, 128, 142 

Tug-of-war, Ch. XIV, conditions, 
305-6 ; the rope, 305 ; the coach, 



220 yards, vide Sprinting. 

ULYSSES, 25 

Undergraduates, English and Ameri- 

can, 66 

United States (U.S.A.), vide America 
U.S. A. v. British Empire, vide British 

Empire and Relay races 
University athletics, n. 18, IQ: field 



371 



INDEX 



events at, 17 ; c/. England and 
America, 3, 65-6; in America, 
63-9 alumni, 64-5 ; vide also 
Cambridge, Oxford, I.V.A.B., 
Scottish Universities, International 
Student Games, Yale, Harvard, 
Princeton, Cornell, Pennsylvania,* 
Waseda, etc. 

University records, 344-6 

Uprights, 118, 265* 

Uruguay, 59 

VAJ* GEYZEL, C. T., vii, chapter on 

High jumping 
Vascular system, 106-8 
Victor Ludorum, 319-20 
Vitamins, 92 



WALES, 57, 209 

Walker, R. E., 45, 134 

Walking, 51, 62, 98, 156, 191, 199, 
and Ch. XII ; popularity as an 
event, 293 ; exercises for, 293 
fair style, 294 ; shuffling, 294 
training, 294-5 ; road walking 
295 ; shoes, 295 ; R.W.A., 295 
as training exercise, vide each 
event 

Warmth, 99-100, 122-3, 237, 260, 
269 

Waseda University, 58 

Watches, 120 

Water, 92-3 

Water jump, n8, and vide Steeple- 
chase 

Weight, putting the, 8, 9; 18, 59, 
62, 64, 114, and Ch. XI, pp. 278- 
281 ; essence of, 278-9 ; descrip- 
tion of the five movements, 279- 
281, and Fig. 30 ; the reverse, 281 ; 
footwork, Fig. 31 ; for boys, 322 

Weight-lifting, 42 

iVeightman-Smith, G. C., 47, 214-6 



Wembley, 67 

Western Conference A. A., 62 

Western roll, vide High jump 

Wide, E., 198 

Williams, P., 47, 135 

Will power, 90, 203-4, 2 6, 278 

Wind, 107 

" Wind up," 90 

Winter, A. W., 248 

Winter sports, 43 

Women, in ancient Olympic Games, 
3'4 29-30, 35 ; in modern 
Olympic Games, 22, 49, 51 ; 
Roman, 7 ; and cross - country, 
21 o ; athletics for, in America and 
Europe, 21, 213 ; Sokols, 57 ; in 
U.S.A., 62 ; and Ch. XV, pp. 307- 
317; standard distinct from men's, 
308 ; merits of women's athletics, 
309-15 ; demerits, 315-7 ; physical 
aspect, 310-4 ; .nerves, 312, 314 ; 
motherhood, 312-3 ; restriction of 
events, 313-4 ; mental aspect, 
314-5 ; sportswomen, 3 J 4~5 ', 
womanliness, 315-6 ; future, 317 ; 
records, 347 

Women's championships, 309 

Women's International Federation, 

314 
World's records, 136, 325-30, 359; 

women's, 347 
Wrestling, in Olympic Games, 5, 24, 

25, 29-31, 42 ; in Rome, 7 ; in 

England, 9, 10 ; in U.S.A., 62 

XENOPHANES, 6 

YACHTING, 42, 44 

Yale, 64, 65 ; and Harvard v. Ox- 
ford and Cambridge, 67 

Yards, comparative table of, and 
metres, 360-2 

Y.M.C.A. international meeting, 56 



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