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Old 06-08-2014, 09:35 PM   #16
Seamus
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

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We had Arnie and Stallone as action heroes.

Kids today get **** Effron and Just Beiber!
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Old 06-08-2014, 09:39 PM   #17
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

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Like I said in the Is Anthony Joshua a boxer or a Bodybuilder thread, "I can never understand why a man who is 6'6" would ever take steroids. My mouth dropped when I heard that Vitali Klitschko got popped for the stuff once too. I can just picture these behemoths curled up around a pint of Haagen-Dazs crying, 'Look at these little twig arms. I'm tiny, pathetic, and weak! I'll never be the champ of the world!' Smashing mirrors, walking around in platform shoes. Got that self-loathing and poor self body image of a little girl.".
All PED's are not the same nor are they used for the same purposes. Many times it is an athlete trying to recover more quickly from an injury so he can get back to making money. Not sure about Vitali. Wasn't he caught in the amateurs? Anyways, in sports like cycling and track, it must be assumed that everyone is using. It seems like 75% of Usain Bolt's team has been busted yet he has not.
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Old 06-08-2014, 11:56 PM   #18
Bummy Davis
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

Back then Ships were made of wood and men of Iron, now ships are made of Iron and men of wood
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Old 06-09-2014, 12:14 AM   #19
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

Simple as this, guys are too soft and lazy to put in the hard work necessary to be successful in sports, that's why they turn to chemicals, and modern chemistry for help, to be more blunt that is the cowardly approach...

Another thing is some of these idiots don't realize the dangerous effects that some of these peds, roids have, look at the death of Lyle Alzado, all of those wrestlers that have died the last 10 years, and even Tommy Morrison dying from aids, from according to his own family was from dirty needles, from injecting steriods...

Live and learn i guess, the hard way..
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Old 06-09-2014, 12:43 AM   #20
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

Here's an article from the New York Times about how rapidly Olympic records are broken, and how they are broken at different rates depending on which sport you are talking about.
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The article also mentions some of the tech swimmers have now like deeper pools, which means the waves from their competitors don't slow them down as much or something.

This other guy over at the dailybeast, who I think wrote Mathletics, says that we shouldn't look suspiciously at people until they break the record more than 2%.
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But what he doesn't take into consideration is that the previous record was likely set by someone on drugs, and you'd need a better batch of drugs to beat it.
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Old 06-09-2014, 01:01 AM   #21
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

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Back then Ships were made of wood and men of Iron, now ships are made of Iron and men of wood
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Old 06-09-2014, 05:23 AM   #22
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

Yes Jim, though athletes tend to be larger today, & a a much larger potential athletic pool are both scientifically selected for a sport + there is generally much better training & nutrition (getting short shrift above), due to science. Though it IS a great thought that the majority of improvement in many sprots may well be due to scientific advances in equipment & PEDs.

A couple corrections of facts that are way WAAAAY off: you will not find track & field records extant from the '60's, including the woman.

Bob Beamon increased the long jump record by almost 1' 10", about 3 yards further than everyone else is insane. And people were creeping on on his record-amazing that it was even for altitude-for years. And the guy who broke his record Mike Powell did it in 1991, ~ 23, not one or 2 years ago.

Actually Jesse Owens owned the long jump record longer than he did.

Fascinating talk & article janitor. Advances in training are just under-stressed.

I was an Anthropology major. The article alludes to 2 things suggesting how other **** Sapiens may have exceeded us. tougher life & frequent + early training.

ALSO when you talk about 1000's of years, even amongst Home Sapiens you can have some difference in the gene pool, like our bone structures have become more gracile the last several 1000 years. Neanderthal is obviously a different story genetically.

However I am unconvinced-though it may be true-about all these claims of greater throwing & running of athletes without all the science & specfic selection.
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Old 06-09-2014, 06:23 AM   #23
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

No and that's not what the lecturer is stating Janitor.

HE quotes a cinder tracks being 1.5 percent slower and makes the case Owens wouldn't be far behind Bolt but he would be. He'd be running 10.05 seconds compared to 9.6, which is way behind in sprinting.

Bannister would be running 3:56 compared to the 3:43 world record. A far better example would be Jim Ryun's 3:51 has a much better case as it could be 3:47 on a synthetic track.

PEDs play their role in improvement of sports science but no more than training, nutrition and scouting for genetic freaks as he pointed out.
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Old 06-09-2014, 09:29 AM   #24
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

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No and that's not what the lecturer is stating Janitor.

HE quotes a cinder tracks being 1.5 percent slower and makes the case Owens wouldn't be far behind Bolt but he would be. He'd be running 10.05 seconds compared to 9.6, which is way behind in sprinting.

Bannister would be running 3:56 compared to the 3:43 world record. A far better example would be Jim Ryun's 3:51 has a much better case as it could be 3:47 on a synthetic track.

PEDs play their role in improvement of sports science but no more than training, nutrition and scouting for genetic freaks as he pointed out.
Unfortunately, it's impossible to tell just how much of a difference equipment and PED's play individually since they develop simultaneously.

For example, nobody ever ran a sub-10 second 100 on a cinder track. Tartan was introduced in '68- that Olympics, someone broke the 10 second barrier for the first time. It's easy to chalk that up to equipment alone. The problem? By that time, steroid use was already rampant in track and field.

I doubt we'll ever be able to create an accurate pie chart that breaks down the impact of various factors on performance output, but I wouldn't downplay the impact of PED's on leveling out the playing field (except for when the genetic freaks juice up themselves- that's when the crazy **** goes down).
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Old 06-09-2014, 12:26 PM   #25
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

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No and that's not what the lecturer is stating Janitor.

HE quotes a cinder tracks being 1.5 percent slower and makes the case Owens wouldn't be far behind Bolt but he would be. He'd be running 10.05 seconds compared to 9.6, which is way behind in sprinting.

Bannister would be running 3:56 compared to the 3:43 world record. A far better example would be Jim Ryun's 3:51 has a much better case as it could be 3:47 on a synthetic track.

PEDs play their role in improvement of sports science but no more than training, nutrition and scouting for genetic freaks as he pointed out.
In fairness to the lecturer (and perhaps Owens) the cinder track was only one factor he mentioned. There was also the starting blocks. He also mentioned the mechanics or something of running (I forget his term) which boils down to the length and rapidity of stride as shown on film. I remember an ****ysis of Owens done in the 1980's which concluded he was actually faster than the then record holder. This lecturer concluded Bolt would win but it would be close, which is probably at least a justifiable position.

Improved shoes play a role also.

I am somewhat agnostic on this, and wouldn't go to the wall on this issue, but this fellow is certainly worth listening to.
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Old 06-09-2014, 02:31 PM   #26
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

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In fairness to the lecturer (and perhaps Owens) the cinder track was only one factor he mentioned. There was also the starting blocks. He also mentioned the mechanics or something of running (I forget his term) which boils down to the length and rapidity of stride as shown on film. I remember an ****ysis of Owens done in the 1980's which concluded he was actually faster than the then record holder. This lecturer concluded Bolt would win but it would be close, which is probably at least a justifiable position.

Improved shoes play a role also.

I am somewhat agnostic on this, and wouldn't go to the wall on this issue, but this fellow is certainly worth listening to.
The conclusion was obviously wrong though, it's just romancing the legend of Owens and throwing science out the window to do it. Owens isn't going to run 3/10ths of a second quicker, for the 80s WR, just because of a change of shoes/track/blocks. The difference between a dug out start versus blocks is quite minimal and shoes don't make that big a difference. Not 3/10ths of a second difference nevermind 6/10ths, that's a long long time in the 100m.

Also bare in mind Ryun ran on cinder and synthetic tracks but set all his records on cinders, so the difference really isn't that great.

Now with modern training I'm sure Owens could be a 9.9 sprinter, but training then wasn't as advanced.
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Old 06-09-2014, 03:11 PM   #27
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

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The conclusion was obviously wrong though, it's just romancing the legend of Owens and throwing science out the window to do it. Owens isn't going to run 3/10ths of a second quicker, for the 80s WR, just because of a change of shoes/track/blocks. The difference between a dug out start versus blocks is quite minimal and shoes don't make that big a difference. Not 3/10ths of a second difference nevermind 6/10ths, that's a long long time in the 100m.

Also bare in mind Ryun ran on cinder and synthetic tracks but set all his records on cinders, so the difference really isn't that great.

Now with modern training I'm sure Owens could be a 9.9 sprinter, but training then wasn't as advanced.
"it's just romancing the legend of Owens and throwing science out the window"

I remember that old article. He ****yzed film to determine the length of stride, apparently off of height, which might be hard to determine. Rapidity of stride should be fairly easy to determine off a film with the knowledge of frames per second.

My take is that this is a very serious scientific ****ysis, but just because it is scientific would not necessarily mean it is accurate. His estimates might be off for one reason or another.

On the other hand, this "just romancing the legend" criticism doesn't have any basis in science at all. I think you are vulnerable to being scored for dismissing evidence out of hand which doesn't agree with your conclusion that modern runners obviously run much faster.

The whole question of traction, given a different surface and different shoes (which I think could have a major effect) seems to me to be an almost unknowable wild card. That 1.5% is possibly merely a guess. I don't know if anyone has done a real test--having runners timed on an old cinder track with old shoes versus the same runners timed on modern tracks with modern shoes with all other conditions held equal.

Has there been such a study?

I am certainly just an ignorant layman, but I see no logical reason that when we are discussing something as basic to humans as running, a runner from the 1930's couldn't be every bit as fast as any or at least most modern runners, despite the growth in population and competitors. The closest ****ogy I can think of to human running is horse racing where, despite the vast number of horses bred and raced each year, Secretariat's times from the 1970's in the major races are still mainly unbroken.

The point about Ryan running faster on cinder tracks is a good one, but I would wonder about his age. Did he run on the cinder tracks when he was younger?

Last edited by edward morbius; 06-09-2014 at 03:26 PM.
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Old 06-09-2014, 03:30 PM   #28
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

In many ways Usain Bolt is an improbable poster boy for the improvement of athletes over time. He suffers from a curved spine, his running technique isn’t particularly good, and I am told that his work ethic is variable!
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Old 06-09-2014, 03:31 PM   #29
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

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HE quotes a cinder tracks being 1.5 percent slower and makes the case Owens wouldn't be far behind Bolt but he would be. He'd be running 10.05 seconds compared to 9.6, which is way behind in sprinting.
In my middling career, my 100 time improved about 4% moving from ****py synthetic tracks to Mondo tracks although that certainly wasn't my main event. Only competed on cinder tracks a couple times. They are horrid.

That said, Owens was a supreme long jumper and would be in any era. Also, don't forget Owens essentially retired at 22 as did most track athletes. At 21, Bolt was going 10.03 on the best tracks in existence. At 22, he had his unprecedented improvement to 9.69 (ahem... cough, cough)... Give Owens a few more years to develop under modern training (and yes, sprint training has drastically improved) and modern facilities, tracks and he's easily a 9.8x guy in my opinion.
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Old 06-09-2014, 04:52 PM   #30
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Default Re: Are advances in athletic performance merely an artefact of technology?

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Originally Posted by edward morbius View Post
"it's just romancing the legend of Owens and throwing science out the window"

I remember that old article. He ****yzed film to determine the length of stride, apparently off of height, which might be hard to determine. Rapidity of stride should be fairly easy to determine off a film with the knowledge of frames per second.

My take is that this is a very serious scientific ****ysis, but just because it is scientific would not necessarily mean it is accurate. His estimates might be off for one reason or another.
Thanks for that, the problem with the ****ysis surely falls down though with 'rapidity of stride' x 'length of stride'. Owens can't have had a more rapid stride comparable to his stride length compared to 80s WR holder Calvin Smith otherwise he'd have ran faster than Smith's record.

The only argument I can see is that the Cinder slows the leg turn over. But research.


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On the other hand, this "just romancing the legend" criticism doesn't have any basis in science at all. I think you are vulnerable to being scored for dismissing evidence out of hand which doesn't agree with your conclusion that modern runners obviously run much faster.
I'm going by the 1.5 percent or a second a 400m lap cinder to synthetic conversion that most who've studied it considered to be the difference. On that basis Owens would be running 100m in around 10.05

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Originally Posted by edward morbius View Post
The whole question of traction, given a different surface and different shoes (which I think could have a major effect) seems to me to be an almost unknowable wild card. That 1.5% is possibly merely a guess. I don't know if anyone has done a real test--having runners timed on an old cinder track with old shoes versus the same runners timed on modern tracks with modern shoes with all other conditions held equal.

Has there been such a study?
I've read a fair bit on runners who've ran on both. Some claim a well kept cinder track or even grass track to be as fast. Many American's claim Jim Ryun was the greatest middle distance runner of all time given his times were set on cinders and they qualify this by claiming a cinder track is 2 seconds per lap (3 percent) slower. The 1 second per lap in the mile (1.5 percent) is called generous in the below thread, Roger Bannister though did claim 1 second per lap (1.5 percent), he could be biased although if he was just being biased he'd claim more.

This is an interesting view from 1 runner's perspective, taken from the following thread, which explains the difference quite well from people who've experienced both.

[Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

In my best years, about 30 years ago I ran about 75-80% of the races on synthetic tracks. I ran a lot of 400m then. My all time best was set on a coke dust track, while all my other PBs were sat on synthetic. I recall that the track on that day was perfect + +. There was a perfect mixture of rainy and sunny weather in the days before the race, the staff had done a terrific job with the preparation and I had one of those days where I just floated off.

The latter could imply that I may have ran even faster if that race had been on a synthetic track. However my experience is that a prefect prepared dirt, cinder, coke, ash track can be almost as good as a synthetic. The non-synthetic tracks has way more variation in the condition due to weather and the skills of the ground men. I have ran on that same track in very wet conditions with water over the shoe sole and and soft grounds. It could add 3-4 seconds on a 400m. On a synthetic track the same conditions would probably have added less than a second.

This is a long way of saying: Non-synthetic tracks may be almost as good as synthetic, but their condition is much more variable.



Quote:
Originally Posted by edward morbius View Post
I am certainly just an ignorant layman, but I see no logical reason that when we are discussing something as basic to humans as running, a runner from the 1930's couldn't be every bit as fast as any or at least most modern runners, despite the growth in population and competitors. The closest ****ogy I can think of to human running is horse racing where, despite the vast number of horses bred and raced each year, Secretariat's times from the 1970's in the major races are still mainly unbroken.
The difference is in the sport become professional and more scientific, Owens and Ryun were amateurs. There wasn't the big money pull. Neither Owens or Ryun improved from the ages of 23 with Owens or around 20 for Owen. That's largely because they were amateurs.

Then there's the trainers, today's runners have ATG runners and sports scientists training them.

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"
The point about Ryan running faster on cinder tracks is a good one, but I would wonder about his age. Did he run on the cinder tracks when he was younger?
Ryun was racing on synthetic tracks from his early to late 20s and never bettered the times he set on cinder tracks between the ages of 19 to 20. You could put this down to him not being a pro runner, he was an amateur. He was from California, were weather probably allowed for better faster cinder tracks possibly on par with synthetic tracks.

If you believe the cinder tracks are 3 percent slower, you essentially believe a 19yo Ryun could run 3:43 on a synthetic track, which is utterly insane as good as he was.
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