Track and Field Disciplines

Track & Field Disciplines

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Running events include distance, middle distance, long sprints and short sprints. 

  • Distance events include the 3200 meter run and challenge aerobic fitness.  The athlete needs to run as fast as possible over long distances at sub maximal level. True grit is needed in order to succeed in endurance competitions.
  • Middle Distance events include the 800, 4x800 relay and 1600 meter run.  The objective is to optimize velocity with a correct balance of anaerobic and aerobic energy systems. 
  • Long Sprints are the 200 meter dash, 400 meter run, 300 hurdles, 4x200 relay and 4x400 relay.  The goal is to reach maximum velocity within a runner’s ability and is explosive and a raw type of running because the human body cannot go all out for a long duration of time.
  • Short Sprints are the 100 meter dash, 110 hurdles and 4x100 meter relay.  Sprinters are attempting to optimize strength and speed to reach and maintain maximum velocity.  It entails running at top speed for a short distance. 


Jumping events make up a combination of horizontal jumps and a vertical jump and include the long jump, high jump and pole vault.  There are four elements to all the jumps, which are approach, take off, flight and landing.  For the approach generate the desired velocity and prepare of the correct take off foot placement as well as choose the number of strides. 

  • Long Jump - Long jumpers are given three attempts and possibly finals. Like most events in track and field high top end speed helps in the jumps. 
  • High jump – The high jump is an explosive event. Like pole vault, the athlete is permitted to jump higher with every clearance of the bar. 
  • Pole vault – The pole vault is an event that requires speed, timing, coordination, and flexibility. 


The throwing events include the shot put and discus. Each of these respective events requires a different skill sets but the objective is to maximize distance thrown. Speed, power and technique are essential.  Good mechanics and throwing rhythm is important because the throwing events are very technical skills.  Some important factors include the height of the release, velocity and the release angle.

  • Shot put – Shot put includes a large metal shot weight that must be pushed as far as possible. Each athlete is given three attempts to reach their best mark in competition. If the athlete makes finals they get an additional three more throws. 
  • Discus - The discus is a circular disc where the athlete spins around his center of gravity in order to whirl the discus as far possible. Each athlete is given three attempts to reach their best mark in competition. If the athlete makes finals they get an additional three more throws.