willrieffer wrote:My own cut to the chase calculations...

KE = 1/2 m v squared

Bubka = 1/2 x 80kg x 9.94 m/s x 9.94m/s = 3952j

Tradenkov = 1/2 x 78kg x 9.47m/s x 9.47m/s = 3498j

Quite extraordinary ! You are repeating the same error, namely using average horizontal velocity measurements, which are the velocities the vaulters had at approximately a horizontal distance out from the rear wall of the planting box of 7.5m . Even with 6.5m long vaulting pole and a massive pre-jump neither vaulter was or could be capable of such a feat. Your math is correct but your input data is just wrong.

Let me point you further, no sophistry, just trying to be helpful by encouraging you to read these studies!

Below I refer you to the only study to date, that I am aware of ,that considers the pole dynamics having, so far as I can determine, each individual pole calibrated as to their load bearing, deflection and recoil characteristics and measuring actual pole vaulter - pole interactions using a combination of force transducers in the planting box, strain measuring transducers in a test pole, combined with synchronised video analysis under controlled experimental measurement not competition conditions. Note the engineers / scientists are from the University of Bordeaux!

Enjoy!

If you put these reference details into Google Scholar you can access the full material.

Mathematical model of the takeoff phase in the pole vault

NP Linthorne - Journal of Applied Biomechanics, 1994

Energy loss in the pole vault take‐off and the advantage of the flexible pole

NP Linthorne - Sports Engineering, 2000

PDF] 4 Energy transformations in the pole vault

NP Linthorne - people.brunel.ac.uk