Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby KirkB » Thu Apr 04, 2013 2:51 pm

DJ, this is all very interesting and very informative. I believe everything that you've said is 100% accurate - no issue there from my perspective. I know that you've lived and breathed this for the past 40 years, so you're entirely credible in my book.

However, I expect SOME argument from Altius about this (or at least some debate :D) and I will pre-empt his questions and complaints by stating them in my own words:

My position is in defense of Altius, Petrov, and Launder being INSTRUMENTAL in the PUBLICIZING of the physics of the PV, and in "putting it all together" and "proving it" by the exemplary career and WRs of Bubka, the teachings of Petrov, and the writing of BTB1 and BTB2 of Launder.

Can you give Bubka, Petrov, and Launder that much? I certainly can! :yes:

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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby KirkB » Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:51 pm

Altius will also ask why the American vaulters haven't been on the pinnacle of Olympic and World Championships glory if their knowledge of modern PV technique is "on par" with the Russians, Europeans, and Australians.

It think that's a fair question, and I too am mystified. Maybe the Americans can excuse it as just waiting for the next Bubka to surface from the US college ranks, but I do think there's an real issue here - I do think that the Americans would be jumping higher if they followed the Petrov Model more closely.

DJ, I don't think it's your question to answer - you're not the PV coach for Team USA - but I do think that for anyone that's hopeful of the USA ever getting back its previous dominance in the PV (13 straight Olympic Golds 1908-1968) it's a question that needs addressing. I think even Russian expatriate Agapit would be happy for an American to break Bubka's WR or win an Olympic Gold.

At the risk of being critical to the American college and US Team coaches, I think the US vaulters would jump higher by following the Petrov Model closer than they've done in the past.

Don't get me wrong - as a loyal Canadian that learned proper PV technique by competing for a US college, I'm very grateful of American coaches, but I'm not very hopeful that a Canadian can win the Olympic Gold - due to our inferior support system and funding for Athletics. So an American winning would be the next best thing for me.

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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby dj » Thu Apr 04, 2013 6:22 pm

Kirk

by the way did you know i worked with Bruce Smpson in the late 70's .. he trained at UF and i went to Montreal in 1979 and helped him at the 79' world champs.. tully won Volkov got second Bruce got 4th with 17-6 and really was ready for 18" which would have won.

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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby KirkB » Thu Apr 04, 2013 6:34 pm

Yes, I had heard that! :yes:

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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby altius » Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:17 pm

[quote="KirkB"]Altius will also ask why the American vaulters haven't been on the pinnacle of Olympic and World Championships glory if their knowledge of modern PV technique is "on par" with the Russians, Europeans, and Australians."

Precisely! But even more I just wonder why the model is not being applied at every level when I look at the vaulters in the NCAA indoors -and why committed high school vaulters come to me with questions and requests for help with their technique - vaulters who do not even know how how to position the pole correctly before they take their first step!

Appreciate the comments Kirk because I have repeatedly stated that I have only ever been a messenger trying to present Petrov's ideas. There are other folk doing that - most notably David Butler, but all through the USA I know of coaches trying to apply the model with their athletes. But again there are just not enough of them, so hundreds of vaulters are still being introduced to old fashioned -ie Pre Bubka models of technique. However possibly even more dangerous is the fact that there seem to many coaches out there who claim to "coach like Petrov" - or even to have improved on Petrov -when they have never really studied his ideas.

Just a comment about Tim Mack - it is worth noting that he won his Olympic title, 21 years after Bubka first appeared. It is difficult to believe that neither he nor his coach were not influenced by vision of a whole swag of Soviet vaulters during that period. Certainly anyone watching Markov vault 6.05 first hand, taking off so far out, would have had to question what they were doing -as I understand Tim actually did.
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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby dj » Fri Apr 05, 2013 1:30 pm

Hey Alan,

Absolutely, every good coach I know has "been influenced" by every world record holder, steel, bamboo and fiberglass, not just by Bubka from 1983 but prior to that! Fred Hanson and John Pennel were my first "models" BUT Issakson was the first I studied that over shadowed our American's..and that was because we had the "film on paper" of his vault.

He was pure "Bubka-esk" but didn't have the same pole and grip. He was attempting to do the same physics in the same way as we attribute to Bubka and Petrov's outstanding descriptive writing. I use Petrov's article…TECHNIQUE TRAINING IN POLE VAULT every day as my "technical model" from grip, pole carry to finish.

Before Bubka, but after Issakson, I studied first hand Bell, Tully and Roberts. I have/had a friendship as well as a minor coaching association with all three.

My first real "big bang" for me was with Volkov in 1979. Watched him train every day for two weeks and filmed his attempts in Montreal at 18 feet with a super 8 camera. I filmed from the stands looking straight down the cross bar. One jump in particular he had finished and was in the "pike" position, both toes 2" ABOVE the bar!

I used that film to write a published (British Athletics and Track Technique-1981) article called 19+Plus. That article is/was Bubka before Bubka.. although I still don't see the point. I wasn't the first coach that was trying to get a "physics" based Run-Plant-Swing.

Tim Mack, like all of us, was influenced by Markov.. BUT Tim was already working very, very hard to get his step "OUT" and as free as possible! He just wasn't sure of HOW he could do that.

He very clearly had already had a "revelation" before 1995 or he would not have come to California to ask "How" and "what do I need to do to accomplish this?"

Every vaulter on the world scene from the time I was introduced to the vault in1961 had to have know the step HAD to be OUT, the plant HAD to be as high as possible..etc...etc...etc

Petrov said it best if you know what you are reading……

Look at these points in my 19+Plus article…

If we are to continue out climb upward, we must now concentrate on a four factors, the utilization of the knowledge we have gained. This means placing emphasis on three major mechanical/technical areas.


The first of these areas is the “hang” position.

Let me try and explain further. When you shorten the body’s swing radius (tuck) and begin to move into the rock back position, there is a decrease in forward pole velocity. (a tuck is bad).

A longer lever (the body) used properly can apply more force than a short lever. By hanging longer and pushing the pole out in front of the body, the vaulter can swing/hang with the body in an elongated position causing more force to be applied to the pole.

This is not a new concept. In earlier days vaulters using steel poles utilized this technique. Earl Bell, who vaulted with fiberglass, demonstrated this type of technique in 1975 by dripping the lead knee after take-off and swinging with a semi-double leg action.

Not only does a vaulter have to possess good speed, good strength, and good plant technique, but he must elongate the swing and force the pole in front of the body as long as possible… “hang”.

Second point…….To perform this action the vaulter must have confidence in his pole and in his own physical abilities. (this was a point that Petrov made very strongly in Reno.)


Third point….. shoot into a vertical handstand position.

……the vaulter must rotate his shoulders and then his hips up the axis of the pole. (this is now called covering the arc of the pole.)



19 PLUS

DAVE JOHNSTON

Copyright 1981
By: Dave Johnston

In 1970, Chris Papanikolaou made the first 18 foot pole vault. Our sights then turned to19 feet. In 1975, when Dave Roberts made 18’ 6 ¼ , 19 plus became more of a reality.

In 1980, we saw more than twenty vaulters clear 18 feet and nine vaulters cleared
18’6 ½ or better. With the refinements that are now taking place in pole vaulting, at
least a dozen of those vaulters clearing 18 feet are capable of 19 feet plus.

The use of better equipment has been a contributing factor. The vaulter now
has greater confidence in his poles, he is gripping higher, using more speed, and utilizing
greater strength to his advantage.

More intense competition is a second factor. A height of 18 feet is now
common. If a vaulter is to be recognized, he must seek and obtain greater heights.

A third factor is the greater distribution of knowledge. Coaches and athletes are
sharing more of their ideas. Television, video, and film loops are common aids and are
analyzed more carefully.

If we are to continue out climb upward, we must now concentrate on a fourth
factor, the utilization of the knowledge we have gained. This means placing emphasis
on three major mechanical/technical areas.


The first of these areas is the “hang” position. When a vaulter grips higher it is
logical to assume that he must hang longer if he is to penetrate to the pit. Even though
this is a logical assumption there has been a great deal of confusion as to how this is
accomplished. Most of us are still thinking “swing” and we should be thinking “hang”.
There is a difference. This difference is of major importance. When the vaulter swings
there is a tendency to pass the pole too early. By doing this he loses his ability to move
the pole forward, or more aptly put, his ability to “penetrate” into the pit. Let me try
and explain further. When you shorten the body’s swing radius (tuck) and begin to
move into the rock back position, there is a decrease in forward pole velocity. We have
know for years that it was to our advantage to stay behind the pole, but it has only been
recently that these limits have been tested. It does not become necessary to change
our complete vault style, we just need to emphasis this area more. A longer lever (the
body) used properly can apply more force than a short lever. By hanging longer and
pushing the pole out in front of the body, the vaulter can swing/hang with the body in
an elongated position causing more force to be applied to the pole.

This is not a new concept. In earlier days vaulters using steel poles utilized this
technique. Earl Bell, who vaulted with fiberglass, demonstrated this type of technique
in 1975 by dripping the lead knee after take-off and swinging with a semi-double leg
action. This action was considered wrong at the time but in actually he was able to grip
higher and still obtain the needed “penetration” to make the pit. Other vaulters have
demonstrated the same technique, not necessarily by design but from necessity, with
positive results. Dave Roberts, in his world record vault of 18’6 ¼ in 1976, is another
example. After the initial take-off his lead knee dropped slightly, only to be pulled back
up later with the trailing leg. With the new array of successful European vaulters, the
examples could go on and on.

To help us further in forming a mental picture of this action, we should think of
the pole as a “bow” and the vaulter as the “arrow”. The vaulter must hang and stabilize
himself behind (under) the “bow”. Even though there is still rotary movement around
the top hand the force generated should be put into the pole by using the bottom arm
as a “fulcrum”, pushing the pole forward into the pit (penetration). The pushing of the
pole forward has been described by some vaulters as giving the jumper the sensation of
rolling the pole (bow) into the pit. The top arm is being pushed forward and up towards
the crossbar, while the bottom arm is still keeping the body extended and away from
the pole. The higher the grip, the larger the “bow” ; the larger the “bow”, the greater
the amount of force that must be applied to get the “bow” to penetrate. Not only does
a vaulter have to possess good speed, good strength, and good plant technique, but he
must elongate the swing and force the pole in front of the body as long as possible…
“hang”.

This brings us to our second point. It is generally considered that the pole must
be moved to the side of the box to allow the vaulter room to swing and obtain the
rocked back position. Let us study this a little more carefully. When this happens, the
vaulter loses valuable force that should be applied to the pole, because the pole is no
longer going in the direction of the vaulters intended flight. By keeping the pole in front of
the vaulter and moving toward the pit, force can be applied longer and more
effectively. This extra amount of force will enable the vaulter to grip the pole higher,
hopefully producing higher vaults. Undoubtedly, this puts the vaulter in a very
precarious position, one that most vaulters had rather not think about. To perform this
action the vaulter must have confidence in his pole and in his own physical abilities.

This brings us to the third phase. The vaulter must come from a delayed “hang”
position, work around the pole and shoot into a vertical handstand position. This phase
has produced mixed results. When Dave Roberts made 18’6 ½”, he came off the pole at
a slight angle, crossing the bar in a parallel position instead of a vertical fly-away
position. This was an outcome of his hanging longer and having to work around the
pole. However, this is not a necessary outcome. We have seen more recently many of
the European vaulters doing the same or similar erratic action at the top of the vault.
Now that several vaulters have had an opportunity to work with the “hang” technique
they are solving many of the problems and performing more effectively and
consistently.

To perform more efficiently off the top of the pole the vaulter must first make
some adjustments. He must mentally see himself working around the pole, not vice-
versa. To work around the pole, the vaulter must rotate his shoulders and then his hips
up the axis of the pole. He must train and develop the timing necessary to perform this
action. This action bares many similarities to a gymnast performing on the high bar.
The gymnast kips and shoots to a handstand. A highly technical move, but in some
ways, very simple. The vaulter, on the other hand, must perform this move while the
pole is moving, which demands the action be perform with an exceptional amount of
speed and timing. It is necessary to program this action into the vaulter by repetitious
training. Repetition in the gymnastics room, working on the high bar, rope or the rings
is the first step. From there, repetitions vaulting will enable the vaulter to put things
together.

In its embryonic stages, this technique has had its drawbacks, but it also has
produced some amazing results as is indicated by the fact that in 1980, nine vaulters
cleared over 18’6 ½”, and even now, weekly attempts are being made at 19 feet.

dj

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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby KirkB » Fri Apr 05, 2013 6:14 pm

Thanks for sharing this 1981 article of yours, DJ. Very interesting!

I must, however, disagree with a couple points. In particular, the "hang", the forcing of the pole with the bottom arm, and the forwards bend of the pole ...

1. The "hang": At a high level, I agree that a "hang" is a good concept. Wolfgang Nordwig used a double-leg swing to win his Gold in 1972. That's a good example of a successful "hang". However, I consider the "hang" a passive motion. Instead, I preferred to keep my body moving. You're right that you would pass the chord if you did this with an elongated body (hand to toe) and then tucked. But by "tapping" from the C to the L, you effectively keep your CoG behind the chord. This is what I did, with the added advantage that my trail leg and hips were already swinging (rotationally) into what you describe as a "shoot to a handstand". That is also what Roberts did, I believe. What you describe is closer to what Isaksson did - 100%.

2. Forcing the pole to bend: This concept may have been what Tulley strived for (I don't know - I've never seen him vault in person), but it was certainly not what Dave Roberts or I strived for. It's unfortunate that your post-jump analysis of his vaults are interpreted as a bottom hand forcing of the pole to bend, because I'm quite certain that he didn't do that. If you ask him today, he will either not remember, or he will say that he didn't force the bend. I think he will say that he never tried to force the bend. I will skip any further detail about this, since this topic is probably the most talked about on PVP - and the debate continues!

3. Forwards bend of the pole: This is very surprising to hear. It's certainly not anything I've strived for, and I fail to see the advantage of this. (Whether Roberts or Tulley ever intentionally strived to do this is not where I'm going with this - I don't know about them). I think this misconception (thinking that you need to do something special to keep the pole bending forwards instead of sideways, and thinking that a forwards bend is somehow more efficient than a sideways bend) is tightly coupled with the misconception of forcing the pole to bend with the bottom arm.

Here's my recollection of what I did, and I believe that Dave did the same thing (you can check with him) ...

When Coach Shannon first taught me how to bend the pole without using my bottom arm, I raised two objections:
1. I told him that it wouldn't bend, and
2. I told him that I would swing into the pole if I couldn't use my bottom arm to move it out of the way.

Over the course of only a week or two, he proved me wrong on both counts. First, the pole DID bend just by the force of my top hand impact when the tip hit the box. Second, as the pole bent, it bent naturally to the right (I'm a lefty), out of the way of my swinging body. Any doubters of this concept need only to watch Tim McMichael's demo of vaulting with only his top hand! I think that vid might be on the PV Manifesto thread.

What I also came to realize - over my freshman year at UW - was that it didn't matter where the POLE was - what mattered was where the CHORD of the pole was. So whether the POLE was bending straight forwards, slightly to the side, or quite a bit to the side, IT DIDN'T MATTER! The roll of the pole towards the pit follows the roll of the CHORD of the pole!

Putting this all together: "hang" is good as long as it's not passive (but "stay behind the chord of the pole" is a better concept that achieves the same thing); there was no need to worry about forcing the pole to bend (it would bend due to the force of the top hand on the pole); and there was no need to worry about which way the pole SHOULD or WOULD bend (it would bend naturally to the side, out of the way of your swinging body - without any steering or forcing at all by the bottom arm).

I'm not arguing about what you SAW or what Tulley DID, but I am disputing what Roberts DID and what is considered (now) good Petrov Model technique. I know I was, and I think Roberts was more Petrovish than you may have realized at the time.

I also think that we all saw Isaksson in the same way - very Petrovish and even showing signs of Agapit's 640 Model. True?

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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby altius » Sat Apr 06, 2013 3:01 am

I also think that we all saw Isaksson in the same way - very Petrovish and even showing signs of Agapit's 640 Model. True?

But what was his PR? Form and function are related, so if his 'form' was great he should have been vaulting very high given his talent and commitment to training??? :idea:
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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby KirkB » Sat Apr 06, 2013 3:49 am

altius wrote: ... Isaksson ... But what was his PR? Form and function are related, so if his 'form' was great he should have been vaulting very high ...

In 1972, 5.59 (18-4) WAS high! It was the World Record! :confused:

I feel like we're covering old ground here, so I'll give you more than just his PR this time, to show how high he jumped ON SEVERAL OCCASIONS ...
SB = Season's Best; WR = World Record; i = indoor

1967 SB 4.55
1968 SB 5.25
1969 SB 5.20
1970 SB 5.37
1971 WR 5.38i
1971 WR 5.41i
1971 SB 5.43
1972 WR 5.45i
1972 WR 5.51
1972 WR 5.54
1972 WR 5.59
1973 SB 5.31
1974 SB 5.40
1975 SB 5.25
1976 SB 5.33
1977 SB 5.30
1978 SB 5.38
1979 SB 5.20
1980 SB 5.20
1981 SB 5.30
1982 SB 5.30
1983 SB 5.30
1984 SB 5.30
1985 SB 5.30
1986 SB 5.20
1987 SB 5.20
1988 SB 5.11
1989 SB 5.25

[Source: Who's Who in Pole Vaulting III - Gerard Dumas]

How many other vaulters have vaulted 5.20 or higher in 20 consecutive years? :yes: Any?

I cannot explain why Isaksson didn't jump higher than 5.59. Perhaps he focused more on Superstars and less on PV after 1972? But 5.59 (18-4) is pretty damn high for being only 5-8.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kjell_Isaksson wrote:Kjell Isaksson achieved international fame in the late 1970s as one of the most successful Superstars competitors, winning two European titles and finishing second in the inaugural 1977 World Championship.

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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby dj » Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:18 am

there is Soooo... much I have regretted about how I wrote what I did…. Starting with the "hang"… not that anybody read it at the time… but there were some "serious" down side that I ran across two years later for an very good USA coach that had changed.. bad change, and he didn't even know I was the author of the article…

I'll get back here when I have time to write.. my thoughts

dj

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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby Decamouse » Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:34 am

What is Pat Manson string -- his 550 string was impressive
Plant like crap sometimes ok most times

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Re: Fourteen Year Gap in Modern PV Technique in the 1970s?

Unread postby ADTF Academy » Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:26 am

dj wrote:there is Soooo... much I have regretted about how I wrote what I did…. Starting with the "hang"… not that anybody read it at the time… but there were some "serious" down side that I ran across two years later for an very good USA coach that had changed.. bad change, and he didn't even know I was the author of the article…

I'll get back here when I have time to write.. my thoughts

dj



I'm going to stop you there. You took a leap of faith and wrote and published that based off beliefs at the time as you were trying to progress an athlete. I found that article very informative in logic. Did I agree with it 100%. No! We can all go back in history and wish something we said could be changed. However by putting it down it allowed you to grow as a coach IMO. For the time written it was bold.


What bugs me the most about many of the posts is that they tend to be theory driven and interpretations of what to do yet being treated as if they are the answer to how to jump a bar that probably isn't even possible with the equipment we have. Saying and doing are two way different things. Claiming coaches are not doing it right. Neither are you obviously or I'd be hanging out with you at major meets. Than you hear,But I don't work with someone who has the skill set. Go find them!!!!!!! Mary Saxer averaged 4.10 her senior year of college. Mark Hollis averaged 5.20 his senior year. The US has hundreds of those everywhere.

As a fun experiment I sent videos of Mary to 20 different coaches. Many are well respected. The replies I received where quite interesting. Everyone has what they believe is the magic fix their go to technical change. Anyone who is in the trenches knows there is no magic fix. It is putting in the reps and figuring out the crazy cues that may work on that vaulter to cause the effect we want. Taking a guy to 5.50 and woman to 4.40 isn't hard. Helping them go higher is. The best replies that helped me the most where from coaches who also have athletes at the elite level. It was simple to the point and concrete. Others where beyond theory driven and hypotheticals. Most of which would cause a major set back in height progression.


The extent of coach bashing on this site is hilarious from people who don't coach anyone and know even less about most coaches who are actually coaching. That vaulter is under if only their coach taught the petrol model. Too funny! I'm not saying because I coach a world class athlete I'm a better coach than the next person. I will say I've been consistent because I respect the process to make someone world class. Till you have it's just talk. I may not agree with certain people 100% but those who have proven themselves as a coach I at least listen and respect. The old phrase agree to disagree. I think some people on this site don't grasp that so till you produce an athlete of substances with your theories it is all talk and theory.


Everyone has issues and everyone has flaws. For me the Bottom line is quite simple. Are you as a coach teaching movements that are helping gain inches of hip height or are the things your doing trying to make your athletes look like a picture. Go prove your theories work. Breaking down other vaulters and saying if I was coaching them I'd do this sounds cool for a sales man. With that being said the number of sales man out there is sad. No athlete should ever go backwards. It's a comment made by a crappy coach who doesn't really know how to make someone better. "You must go backwards to go forward." An athlete should never show a major reduction in average clearances height from changing a movement/pattern. If they do it didn't work. You made them worst.


I don't think some of the coaches here really grasp how high 6.40 and 5.50 for a woman is. Do you realize the grips and poles that would be needed to clear these bars in the real world not a bubble..... Till you grasp what is needed you can't great a game plan to get there. Till you grasp what it would take your athlete to do those benchmarks its all smoke.


As far as the topic at hand I've had multiple conversations with Tim and Bmiller back as late as 1999 when he was debating to keep jumping or not. I've even heard claims by many coaches including a European sprint coach saying he was the reason Tim jumped high because of one session they had. I'd say every vaulter knows deep down they are under. The how to fix is the challenge. Tim has spoken many times Edmonton was the final straw in making massive changes.

On a side note I was just in Australia expecting to see amazing pole vault technique. Same pole carry and drop issues as in the states. Vaulters taking off under and coming up short. Yet the claim is made they focus on it 100% perfectly. Both men and woman jumping with the same errors we have in the states. Gonna be the person to relay the truth everyone is stepping in dog crap. It's all the same all over the world. Every meet I've been to with juniors at the meet the same issues we have in the states are present. We just have more vaulters a bigger forum and more coaches that like to state their opinions. Most European coaches won't talk shop until they trust you enough to talk shop.




Pat Manson was something like 20 years over 5.50. Crazy.
Last edited by ADTF Academy on Thu Apr 11, 2013 11:51 am, edited 4 times in total.


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