(Potential) good news, regarding the schedule for State Track & Field Finals
01/10/2017 8:40:25 AM
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In a continuation of the recent trend of FHSAA track & field administration to work towards refining the State Finals experience, it appears that the 4x800 races will now be conducted in single heats, rather than two heats per gender/class. While opponents may suggest an increased potential for contact in the early laps and first exchange, the two main benefits are mighty: 1. The schedule time allotted for the event is effectively halved. While the 4 x 800 is my favorite running event, watching it for four hours last year was a marathon test of spectating endurance. 2. No more anticlimactic situations where the scorers of the "fast" heat are displaced by "slow" heat finishers. Alternately, the best squads in the "slow" heats now get more legit (and helpful) competition. FHSAA is also surveying advisory counsel members about a proposal to start the meet with 4x400 prelims the first running event on Day One, so the 4x400 at the end of Day Two can also be a single heat drama. If State were still a one-day affair I would have voted nay, but given that prelim/final would now bookend a two-day meet, I voted in favor. This is not a done deal, but now you know what is being considered! Gary Droze Advisory Committee Wonk
In a continuation of the recent trend of FHSAA track & field administration to work towards refining the State Finals experience, it appears that the 4x800 races will now be conducted in single heats, rather than two heats per gender/class. While opponents may suggest an increased potential for contact in the early laps and first exchange, the two main benefits are mighty:
1. The schedule time allotted for the event is effectively halved. While the 4 x 800 is my favorite running event, watching it for four hours last year was a marathon test of spectating endurance.
2. No more anticlimactic situations where the scorers of the "fast" heat are displaced by "slow" heat finishers. Alternately, the best squads in the "slow" heats now get more legit (and helpful) competition.

FHSAA is also surveying advisory counsel members about a proposal to start the meet with 4x400 prelims the first running event on Day One, so the 4x400 at the end of Day Two can also be a single heat drama. If State were still a one-day affair I would have voted nay, but given that prelim/final would now bookend a two-day meet, I voted in favor. This is not a done deal, but now you know what is being considered!

Gary Droze
Advisory Committee Wonk
01/10/2017 11:29:38 AM
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is that 4 by 4 change being considered for this year? 2017
is that 4 by 4 change being considered for this year? 2017
01/10/2017 11:30:17 AM
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for what one opinion is worth... that is a great proposal....
for what one opinion is worth... that is a great proposal....
01/10/2017 5:32:47 PM
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What time and day, approx for the girls 4a 3200 for the state track meet. thanks
What time and day, approx for the girls 4a 3200 for the state track meet. thanks
01/10/2017 11:53:09 PM
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@GaryDroze Could you pleas explain the 4x4 format that was proposed?
@GaryDroze Could you pleas explain the 4x4 format that was proposed?
01/11/2017 8:22:16 AM
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4x400 format would be same as the other sprints are conducted: top performers from two prelim heats then run in one final. Prelim would be first running event on first day. Final would be last running event on day two.
4x400 format would be same as the other sprints are conducted: top performers from two prelim heats then run in one final. Prelim would be first running event on first day. Final would be last running event on day two.
01/11/2017 12:12:15 PM
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is this proposed change for the 2017 state meet? or the 2018 state meet?
is this proposed change for the 2017 state meet? or the 2018 state meet?
01/11/2017 12:33:01 PM
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all seem to be a great idea
all seem to be a great idea
01/11/2017 1:03:04 PM
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4x400 relay prelims?? So they are thinking about starting prelims for the 4x400 now? I think this would be a BAD idea. That is just adding another prelim to athletes that are already overloaded. Who would have voted in favor of this?? I like the 1 heat 4x800 idea. Hopefully I am just reading the 4x400 info wrong.
4x400 relay prelims?? So they are thinking about starting prelims for the 4x400 now? I think this would be a BAD idea. That is just adding another prelim to athletes that are already overloaded. Who would have voted in favor of this?? I like the 1 heat 4x800 idea. Hopefully I am just reading the 4x400 info wrong.
01/11/2017 2:20:54 PM
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I assume part of this movement is because the end of the state finals last year took a LONG time and maybe they are trying to speed up day 2?
I assume part of this movement is because the end of the state finals last year took a LONG time and maybe they are trying to speed up day 2?
01/11/2017 10:20:38 PM
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All the coaches who feel strongly about issues affecting track and field in Florida really should start to show up the the Track Coaches clinic every year where we all discuss this and vote on it. It was last weekend and 300 or so of us were there.
All the coaches who feel strongly about issues affecting track and field in Florida really should start to show up the the Track Coaches clinic every year where we all discuss this and vote on it. It was last weekend and 300 or so of us were there.
01/12/2017 7:36:02 AM
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4x400 Prelim? Great! Just what the sprinters needed. Another preliminary event, as if they aren't already overloaded. Speed up day 2? Oh sure, less rest for the overloaded athletes.
4x400 Prelim? Great! Just what the sprinters needed. Another preliminary event, as if they aren't already overloaded. Speed up day 2? Oh sure, less rest for the overloaded athletes.
01/12/2017 8:21:42 AM
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as always, there will be many different opinions... If the goal is to put on a championship meet for spectators, prelims and finals in the 400 is a no brainer! If the goal is to coddle sprinters to get fastest times possible, then a bad idea... In this old fogie's opinion, it makes little sense to have prelims and final sin the 400 and not have them in the 4X400.... Yes, athletes will be taxed more... the programs that are deep enough to develop alternates for prelims ( aka Northwestern type programs) will benefit, while the programs with two studs and two fill ins will be hurt. My vote, is YES! and yes to 4X800! But for that race just make sure your second legs were protective elbow guards and stick em to hold batons during a hectic exchange. Watch Penn relays when teams lose seconds and sometimes entire body limbs during some of those exchanges. and one official int he passing zone will not do.
as always, there will be many different opinions...

If the goal is to put on a championship meet for spectators, prelims and finals in the 400 is a no brainer!

If the goal is to coddle sprinters to get fastest times possible, then a bad idea...

In this old fogie's opinion, it makes little sense to have prelims and final sin the 400 and not have them in the 4X400.... Yes, athletes will be taxed more... the programs that are deep enough to develop alternates for prelims ( aka Northwestern type programs) will benefit, while the programs with two studs and two fill ins will be hurt.

My vote, is YES! and yes to 4X800! But for that race just make sure your second legs were protective elbow guards and stick em to hold batons during a hectic exchange. Watch Penn relays when teams lose seconds and sometimes entire body limbs during some of those exchanges. and one official int he passing zone will not do.
01/12/2017 8:34:00 AM
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If the sprinters are overloaded due to too many events, I would blame the coach (including myself, if I spread mine too thin, when I did a lot when I was younger, greedier, and even dumber than I am now). The solution for me as a coach is to do a better job of encouraging students to come out for track & run the 400! The overarching rationale for both of these changes is to create a true championship relay final, wherein your team's finish place in that race reflects your true place in the event.
If the sprinters are overloaded due to too many events, I would blame the coach (including myself, if I spread mine too thin, when I did a lot when I was younger, greedier, and even dumber than I am now). The solution for me as a coach is to do a better job of encouraging students to come out for track & run the 400!

The overarching rationale for both of these changes is to create a true championship relay final, wherein your team's finish place in that race reflects your true place in the event.
01/12/2017 10:07:25 AM
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[quote=mbecker]If the goal is to coddle sprinters to get fastest times possible, then a bad idea...[/quote] Ah . . . presentation is everything . . . If one substitutes the word 'protect' for 'coddle' then we have an obvious choice. The 400 is a different animal and anaerobic fueling concerns are real. 200s (shorter anaerobic - muscles are not reoxygenated at a useful rate) and 800s (half anaerobic, half aerobic (consumed oxygen is regenerated during the race)) are eminently recoverable. The 400, much less so. We do not need another round of 400s for the athletes that are trying to compete well. What one coach sees as 'overusing' athletes is the opposite of what I felt as an athlete. PLEASE let me compete in as many I can safely handle. For jumpers and hurdlers, the more the merrier! (not EVERY meet, week in and week out, but certainly the State Series, when it 'matters'). I see prelims for the 4x4 as ONLY about speeding up the schedule, NOT benefiting the athletes. Athletes are why we're here. On the other hand, the combining of the 4x8s IS athlete-friendly - let everyone compete for the prizes on an equal footing.
mbecker wrote:
If the goal is to coddle sprinters to get fastest times possible, then a bad idea...

Ah . . . presentation is everything . . .
If one substitutes the word 'protect' for 'coddle' then we have an obvious choice. The 400 is a different animal and anaerobic fueling concerns are real. 200s (shorter anaerobic - muscles are not reoxygenated at a useful rate) and 800s (half anaerobic, half aerobic (consumed oxygen is regenerated during the race)) are eminently recoverable. The 400, much less so. We do not need another round of 400s for the athletes that are trying to compete well.

What one coach sees as 'overusing' athletes is the opposite of what I felt as an athlete. PLEASE let me compete in as many I can safely handle. For jumpers and hurdlers, the more the merrier! (not EVERY meet, week in and week out, but certainly the State Series, when it 'matters').

I see prelims for the 4x4 as ONLY about speeding up the schedule, NOT benefiting the athletes. Athletes are why we're here. On the other hand, the combining of the 4x8s IS athlete-friendly - let everyone compete for the prizes on an equal footing.
01/12/2017 10:20:42 AM
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The consumed oxygen is regenerated during the race?
The consumed oxygen is regenerated during the race?
01/12/2017 11:04:17 AM
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I think a point that GPC was making is that the 400 is the event in Track and Field that produces the highest level of lactic acid in the body. The body tops out generally at about 24mMol of Lactate in the blood which also happens to be the amount that running a well executed 400 is going to generate. The 400 is (depending on which study you reference) in the neighborhood of 30% Aerobic and 70% anaerobic. More importantly, it is the race in which we tax the anaerobic side at near capacity until it can no longer keep up, generally, around 40 secs into the race. In the 200, there is nearly no aerobic side to the race. In the 800, because of the slower pace, the anaerobic side is exhausted, or the maximum level of lactic acid is reached (incidentally, only typically 16 mMol in this event) at around 75 seconds. Because of the lower levels, we generally accept that kids can run an 800 at the beginning of a meet and still be okay to compete well a little bit later. We know that after about 18 minutes, the body is about 90% recovered from that lactic acid buildup, but it isn't 100% recovered for many hours. So, after 18 minutes, assuming the figures above, the 800 runner is walking around with around 1.6 mMol and the 400 runner is walking around with 2.4 mMol, or about 50% more. I am not saying this shouldn't be done. I voted for the idea of a 4X400 prelim. I just accept that if I have that sprinter who is seeded around 5-10th at state and I wanted to use them on my 4X400, then I may have to make a choice about which of those events is more important because that kid would be at a distinct disadvantage versus someone who did not run on a 4X400. Same concept in the 4X8, but physiologically, there is a significant difference. Coach Droze, since you teach this stuff and I have a degree in Religion, please correct my science as needed. I take no offense.
I think a point that GPC was making is that the 400 is the event in Track and Field that produces the highest level of lactic acid in the body. The body tops out generally at about 24mMol of Lactate in the blood which also happens to be the amount that running a well executed 400 is going to generate. The 400 is (depending on which study you reference) in the neighborhood of 30% Aerobic and 70% anaerobic. More importantly, it is the race in which we tax the anaerobic side at near capacity until it can no longer keep up, generally, around 40 secs into the race. In the 200, there is nearly no aerobic side to the race. In the 800, because of the slower pace, the anaerobic side is exhausted, or the maximum level of lactic acid is reached (incidentally, only typically 16 mMol in this event) at around 75 seconds. Because of the lower levels, we generally accept that kids can run an 800 at the beginning of a meet and still be okay to compete well a little bit later. We know that after about 18 minutes, the body is about 90% recovered from that lactic acid buildup, but it isn't 100% recovered for many hours. So, after 18 minutes, assuming the figures above, the 800 runner is walking around with around 1.6 mMol and the 400 runner is walking around with 2.4 mMol, or about 50% more.

I am not saying this shouldn't be done. I voted for the idea of a 4X400 prelim. I just accept that if I have that sprinter who is seeded around 5-10th at state and I wanted to use them on my 4X400, then I may have to make a choice about which of those events is more important because that kid would be at a distinct disadvantage versus someone who did not run on a 4X400. Same concept in the 4X8, but physiologically, there is a significant difference.

Coach Droze, since you teach this stuff and I have a degree in Religion, please correct my science as needed. I take no offense.
01/12/2017 11:24:38 AM
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@jlafollette No...the discussion had absolutely nothing to do with speeding up the meet. It had everything to do with moving toward true championship style competition where the 2nd day being a "Finals Day" only has Finals for running events. Not a slow heat and a fast heat. The 4 x 800m was also changed into a single heat format. The positive consequence of these moves just so happens to speed up the meet.
@jlafollette

No...the discussion had absolutely nothing to do with speeding up the meet. It had everything to do with moving toward true championship style competition where the 2nd day being a "Finals Day" only has Finals for running events. Not a slow heat and a fast heat. The 4 x 800m was also changed into a single heat format.

The positive consequence of these moves just so happens to speed up the meet.
01/12/2017 11:27:13 AM
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[quote=RayRodriguez]The consumed oxygen is regenerated during the race?[/quote] Yes. In aerobic races the body reoxygenates the blood in a usable way; in anaerobic races, the oxygen depletion is happening too fast for 'useful' reoxygenation during the race. Plus as dddd points out, the lactic acid is building too rapidly for useful dissipation in a 400. P.S. As I learned this at my USATF Level II week-long course at Geo Tech many summers ago, I was pleased to have confirmed what I had felt in college, when I ran my 400 Hurdles races. The 400H, more than any other event, is the WORST (or BEST, depending at how one looks at it) at depleting one's natural energy stores. It is Satan's event!
RayRodriguez wrote:
The consumed oxygen is regenerated during the race?

Yes. In aerobic races the body reoxygenates the blood in a usable way; in anaerobic races, the oxygen depletion is happening too fast for 'useful' reoxygenation during the race.
Plus as dddd points out, the lactic acid is building too rapidly for useful dissipation in a 400.

P.S. As I learned this at my USATF Level II week-long course at Geo Tech many summers ago, I was pleased to have confirmed what I had felt in college, when I ran my 400 Hurdles races. The 400H, more than any other event, is the WORST (or BEST, depending at how one looks at it) at depleting one's natural energy stores. It is Satan's event!
01/12/2017 11:34:55 AM
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[quote=multijumps] It had everything to do with moving toward true championship style competition where one heat can be run as a final....a true Final.[/quote] Sorry, I still do not buy that as adequate rationale for a change.
multijumps wrote:
It had everything to do with moving toward true championship style competition where one heat can be run as a final....a true Final.

Sorry, I still do not buy that as adequate rationale for a change.

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