The real reason to switch to metric marks in FE
03/09/2017 2:57:34 PM
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I looked at the Region Meet results in Florida last year in the Long Jump, Triple Jump and Shot put – the events that are supposed to be measured to the lesser 1/4 inch. A total of 1466 best marks from those 16 meets in those 3 events for both genders. Took me 40 minutes to copy and paste them into EXCEL. Common sense would say you should have close to an equal number of marks ending in 1/4, 1/2, 3/4 or no fraction at all. Each should occur about 25% of the time. They didn’t. Best marks that ended in 1/4 inch occurred only 11.4% of the time while those that end in 3/4 inch happened 11.7%. Both less than half of what they should. Best marks ending in 1/2 happened slightly more than normal at 29.1% while those with no fraction at all occurred 47.8% of the time, twice as often as they should. Did this occur because head field event judges are incompetent/ignorant of the rules or because head field event judges are incompetent/ignorant when it comes to reading a measuring tape? Full disclosure, I coached HS track and field in Missouri at a small school in the Missouri River bottom just east of Kansas City. I had noticed the problems with measurements last December in those three events. I did 10 years’ worth of data and the results in Missouri are almost identical to what is happening in Florida. Ignorance and incompetence is universal. We can’t even blame it on us joining the SEC because the data I have was before that time. I ran the data in Florida because I will have something to compare when you all run your Region Meets in late April. I have been a math teacher for 40 years and know the effect that fractions have on causing brain freeze in adolescents. I think there will be much fairer measurements when going to the lesser centimeter. Two problems that we now face. If a coach saw that an event had been measured incorrectly, they could file a valid protest and that event may have to be rerun. The worst problem – and Missouri has a system like Florida with 4 qualifying meets that each feed the top 4 into the state meet – is that in my state there may have been up to 30 athletes over 10 years in those events that could have qualified for the state meet but did not get the opportunity because that event in that meet was only marked to the 1/2 inch or nearest inch. Very curious what the data will show.
I looked at the Region Meet results in Florida last year in the Long Jump, Triple Jump and Shot put -- the events that are supposed to be measured to the lesser 1/4 inch. A total of 1466 best marks from those 16 meets in those 3 events for both genders. Took me 40 minutes to copy and paste them into EXCEL. Common sense would say you should have close to an equal number of marks ending in 1/4, 1/2, 3/4 or no fraction at all. Each should occur about 25% of the time. They didn't. Best marks that ended in 1/4 inch occurred only 11.4% of the time while those that end in 3/4 inch happened 11.7%. Both less than half of what they should. Best marks ending in 1/2 happened slightly more than normal at 29.1% while those with no fraction at all occurred 47.8% of the time, twice as often as they should.
Did this occur because head field event judges are incompetent/ignorant of the rules or because head field event judges are incompetent/ignorant when it comes to reading a measuring tape?
Full disclosure, I coached HS track and field in Missouri at a small school in the Missouri River bottom just east of Kansas City. I had noticed the problems with measurements last December in those three events. I did 10 years' worth of data and the results in Missouri are almost identical to what is happening in Florida. Ignorance and incompetence is universal. We can't even blame it on us joining the SEC because the data I have was before that time.
I ran the data in Florida because I will have something to compare when you all run your Region Meets in late April. I have been a math teacher for 40 years and know the effect that fractions have on causing brain freeze in adolescents. I think there will be much fairer measurements when going to the lesser centimeter.
Two problems that we now face. If a coach saw that an event had been measured incorrectly, they could file a valid protest and that event may have to be rerun. The worst problem -- and Missouri has a system like Florida with 4 qualifying meets that each feed the top 4 into the state meet -- is that in my state there may have been up to 30 athletes over 10 years in those events that could have qualified for the state meet but did not get the opportunity because that event in that meet was only marked to the 1/2 inch or nearest inch.
Very curious what the data will show.
03/11/2017 3:50:38 PM
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Hopefully it will help, but so far they are not using it much
Hopefully it will help, but so far they are not using it much
03/17/2017 1:21:36 PM
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How many incorrect measurements of 1/4 inch (or much more)have happened when the stick is placed in the sand to measure a jump? That area of measuring a jump is waaaaay less of an "exact science" than the measurement at the board. Think about it.
How many incorrect measurements of 1/4 inch (or much more)have happened when the stick is placed in the sand to measure a jump? That area of measuring a jump is waaaaay less of an "exact science" than the measurement at the board. Think about it.
03/17/2017 5:58:26 PM
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Very well aware of that possible error which is why when I was a meet manager for state qualifying meets I put very competent people as the head judges in those events. Marking a jump or a throw is a judgement call and can not be protested. However, not marking to the lesser 1/4 inch in the horizontal jumps (NFHS Rule 6.9.13 in the horizontal jumps and 6.7.11 in the shot) can be protested because their is a clear violation of a rule. (NFHS Rule 3.5.3a)
Very well aware of that possible error which is why when I was a meet manager for state qualifying meets I put very competent people as the head judges in those events. Marking a jump or a throw is a judgement call and can not be protested. However, not marking to the lesser 1/4 inch in the horizontal jumps (NFHS Rule 6.9.13 in the horizontal jumps and 6.7.11 in the shot) can be protested because their is a clear violation of a rule. (NFHS Rule 3.5.3a)
03/17/2017 9:15:12 PM
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Not disputing the rule. Just food for thought.
Not disputing the rule. Just food for thought.
03/19/2017 8:41:16 PM
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High Jump / Pole vault - Most of the time, officials just go by what the standards say, which are hardly ever calibrated. Long Jump / Triple Jump - First of all the sand is almost always lower than the board, so the distance is not accurate. The tape is held plus/minus an inch of where it should be. The tape is not parallel to the mark in the sand from the board. Shot / Discus - often a guess where the implement hit, esp., in the Discus. Ergo, grossly mismeasured distances happen ALL the time, imperial or metric.
High Jump / Pole vault - Most of the time, officials just go by what the standards say, which are hardly ever calibrated.

Long Jump / Triple Jump - First of all the sand is almost always lower than the board, so the distance is not accurate. The tape is held plus/minus an inch of where it should be. The tape is not parallel to the mark in the sand from the board.

Shot / Discus - often a guess where the implement hit, esp., in the Discus.

Ergo, grossly mismeasured distances happen ALL the time, imperial or metric.
03/19/2017 10:59:45 PM
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@statguy 1st I always calibrated the opening height in the vertical jumps. I did not after that, but all were jumping the same height at each raise, maybe unknown, but a fair competition. Only NFHS Rule 6.4.12 for the HJ and Rule 6.5.25 for the PV specify that an accurate measurement be taken before each record attempt. 2nd In the horizontal jumps, Rule 6.9.4 states the surface of the landing pit shall have the same elevation as the takeoff board. If that is not the case then per Rule 2.1.4, the meet referee can determine the venue is unacceptable and the event not competed. As a meet referee, I would not make that call but if a coach filed a valid protest, I would have to. Marking in any throw or horizontal jump is a judgement call. I still believe there are more mistakes made by incompetence of the rules and incompetence of reading an Imperial measuring tape and not from improper marking. I am only saying that the switch to metric will help eliminate both of the former.
@statguy
1st I always calibrated the opening height in the vertical jumps. I did not after that, but all were jumping the same height at each raise, maybe unknown, but a fair competition. Only NFHS Rule 6.4.12 for the HJ and Rule 6.5.25 for the PV specify that an accurate measurement be taken before each record attempt.
2nd In the horizontal jumps, Rule 6.9.4 states the surface of the landing pit shall have the same elevation as the takeoff board. If that is not the case then per Rule 2.1.4, the meet referee can determine the venue is unacceptable and the event not competed. As a meet referee, I would not make that call but if a coach filed a valid protest, I would have to.
Marking in any throw or horizontal jump is a judgement call. I still believe there are more mistakes made by incompetence of the rules and incompetence of reading an Imperial measuring tape and not from improper marking. I am only saying that the switch to metric will help eliminate both of the former.
03/20/2017 8:24:20 AM
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[quote=Hays] I still believe there are more mistakes made by incompetence of the rules and incompetence of reading an Imperial measuring tape and not from improper marking.[/quote] @Hays Maybe for jumps, but definitely not the case for the throws. Can't tell you how many times I watch the people marking the discus event stand outside the sector line and miss throws by several feet because they are too far away to see the actual mark. Marking for the shot put is generally better, but still far from good in many cases. Granted there are competitions every weekend that are unfortunately determined by the misreading of the tape, but I guarantee you that more throwing events have been won or lost because of faulty marking.
Hays wrote:
I still believe there are more mistakes made by incompetence of the rules and incompetence of reading an Imperial measuring tape and not from improper marking.


@Hays

Maybe for jumps, but definitely not the case for the throws. Can't tell you how many times I watch the people marking the discus event stand outside the sector line and miss throws by several feet because they are too far away to see the actual mark. Marking for the shot put is generally better, but still far from good in many cases. Granted there are competitions every weekend that are unfortunately determined by the misreading of the tape, but I guarantee you that more throwing events have been won or lost because of faulty marking.
04/30/2017 12:18:33 PM
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Comparison of 2016 measurements of best marks vs. 2017 in the LJ, TJ, SP Marks ending in 1/4 inch in 2016 occurred 11.4%. In 2017 24.5% Marks ending in 1/2 inch in 2016 occurred 26.3%. In 2017 26.3% Marks ending in 3/4 inch in 2016 occurred 11.7%. In 2017 24.6% Marks with no fraction in 2016 occurred 47.8%. In 2017 24.5% I think it worked at least to eliminate any protest being upheld because NFHS rules 6.7.11 or 6.9.13 were not followed.
Comparison of 2016 measurements of best marks vs. 2017 in the LJ, TJ, SP
Marks ending in 1/4 inch in 2016 occurred 11.4%. In 2017 24.5%
Marks ending in 1/2 inch in 2016 occurred 26.3%. In 2017 26.3%
Marks ending in 3/4 inch in 2016 occurred 11.7%. In 2017 24.6%
Marks with no fraction in 2016 occurred 47.8%. In 2017 24.5%
I think it worked at least to eliminate any protest being upheld because NFHS rules 6.7.11 or 6.9.13 were not followed.

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