Where did they come from?

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Where did they come from?

Unread postby VaultPurple » Wed Mar 16, 2011 11:38 am

There is another thread about "Where did they go?" talking about really good high school or college vaulters that didn't quite live up to what we expected them to.

Well how about a thread for the opposite. Who out there is jumping really high now that when they left high school no one could have ever predicted they would end up that good?

The best one of all time I can think of would have to be Jeff Hartwig who was not even a 15' vaulter in high school and did not even jump 18 in college. There was also a guy jumping for UCLA who was jumping over 17 that was just a 12'6 guy in high school.

Anyone know who has improved most from high school to college?

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby rainbowgirl28 » Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:07 pm

VaultPurple wrote:Anyone know who has improved most from high school to college?


There have been plenty of great vaulters who started vaulting in college, especially women. In recent years, Jenn Stuczynski, Carly Dockendorf, Katie Viuf, Ashton Eaton come to mind. Of course 10-15 yeas ago none of the elite women had vaulted in HS.

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby vcpvcoach » Wed Mar 16, 2011 9:03 pm

OK, I'll bite.

Freshman vaulter at University of Illinois, Stephanie Ritcharz, just broke the school indoor record with a jump of 12' 11" 1/2. She jumped only 11'6'" in high school. Not earth shattering but pretty good none the less. (I coached her in high school)

Keep an eye out for her in the future.

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby dj » Wed Mar 16, 2011 11:57 pm

good morning..

how about starting with each one of these.... i would like to know where each came from...

there is only 3/4 that i know much about...

on the mens side.. T-Mack had/has a pretty good story...

dj

1 Tina Sutej JR Arkansas 4.45m 14-7 ¼ 10
2 Katerina Stefanidi JR Stanford 4.40m 14-5 ¼ 8
3 Natalie Willer SR Nebraska 4.35m 14-3 ¼ 6
4 Melissa Gergel SR Oregon 4.35m 14-3 ¼ 5
5 Denise vonEynatten SR South Florida 4.30m 14-1 ¼ 4
6 Tara Diebold JR Arkansas 4.30m 14-1 ¼ 3
7 Samantha Sonnenberg SR Minnesota 4.25m 13-11 ¼ 2
8 Allison Stokke SR California 4.10m 13-5 ¼ 1
9 Kelly Phillips SR Virginia Tech 4.10m 13-5 ¼
9 Joanna Wright SR Georgia Tech 4.10m 13-5 ¼
11 Sandi Morris FR North Carolina 4.00m 13-1 ½
12 Amy Fryt SR Duke 4.00m 13-1 ½
NH Rachel Fisher SO BYU
NH Sonia Grabowska JR Utah State
NH Leslie Brost JR North Dakota St.
NH Christen Botteron JR BYU
NH Shade Weygandt SO Texas Tech

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby vaultmd » Thu Mar 17, 2011 1:59 am

How about Giovani?

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby VaultPurple » Thu Mar 17, 2011 9:37 am

dj wrote:good morning..

how about starting with each one of these.... i would like to know where each came from...

there is only 3/4 that i know much about...

on the mens side.. T-Mack had/has a pretty good story...

dj

1 Tina Sutej JR Arkansas 4.45m 14-7 ¼ 10 (Jumped over 13 in Europe before college)
2 Katerina Stefanidi JR Stanford 4.40m 14-5 ¼ 8 (Jumped 14'4 Before college)
3 Natalie Willer SR Nebraska 4.35m 14-3 ¼ 6 (Jumped 13'1 in high school)
4 Melissa Gergel SR Oregon 4.35m 14-3 ¼ 5 (Jumped 13'2 in high school)
5 Denise vonEynatten SR South Florida 4.30m 14-1 ¼ 4 (Jumped over 14 in high school)
6 Tara Diebold JR Arkansas 4.30m 14-1 ¼ 3 (Jumped 13 in high school)
7 Samantha Sonnenberg SR Minnesota 4.25m 13-11 ¼ 2 (Jumped 12'6 in high school)
8 Allison Stokke SR California 4.10m 13-5 ¼ 1 (13'7 in high school)
9 Kelly Phillips SR Virginia Tech 4.10m 13-5 ¼ (Did not vault in high school, but was high level gymnast and dad is VT coach)
9 Joanna Wright SR Georgia Tech 4.10m 13-5 ¼ (12'1 in high school, fairly good sprinter and hurdler)
11 Sandi Morris FR North Carolina 4.00m 13-1 ½ (13'1 in high school, sub 15 100hh and is pretty tall)
12 Amy Fryt SR Duke 4.00m 13-1 ½ (11'7 in high school)
NH Rachel Fisher SO BYU (13+ high school)
NH Sonia Grabowska JR Utah State (member of Polish national team in high school)
NH Leslie Brost JR North Dakota St. (13'5 in high school)
NH Christen Botteron JR BYU (only result i can see is 11'6 in high school)
NH Shade Weygandt SO Texas Tech (14' high school)


So out of this group the biggest improvements come from Amy Fryt, Joanna Wright, Christen Botteron, and Samantha Sonnenberg.


The one that seems to really go and get it without knowing if she could vault in college is Christen Botteron who was told by BYU her senior year they would only talk to her about walking on if she jumped 11'6 (PR was 10'8). Joanna Wright just kind of jumped on the scene last year but I trained at same club as her in high school and could never figure out how she was only jumping 11'6 and 12' at meets because she was so fast and had really good technique, clearing some pretty good heights in practice. Fryt also had one of the largest improvements going from 11'7 to over 14' (and she is like 5'3).

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby Andy_C » Thu Mar 17, 2011 6:42 pm

Thanks for the info Vault Purple

Also regarding this list...

VaultPurple wrote:1 Tina Sutej JR Arkansas 4.45m 14-7 ¼ 10 (Jumped over 13 in Europe before college)
2 Katerina Stefanidi JR Stanford 4.40m 14-5 ¼ 8 (Jumped 14'4 Before college)
3 Natalie Willer SR Nebraska 4.35m 14-3 ¼ 6 (Jumped 13'1 in high school)
4 Melissa Gergel SR Oregon 4.35m 14-3 ¼ 5 (Jumped 13'2 in high school)
5 Denise vonEynatten SR South Florida 4.30m 14-1 ¼ 4 (Jumped over 14 in high school)
6 Tara Diebold JR Arkansas 4.30m 14-1 ¼ 3 (Jumped 13 in high school)
7 Samantha Sonnenberg SR Minnesota 4.25m 13-11 ¼ 2 (Jumped 12'6 in high school)
8 Allison Stokke SR California 4.10m 13-5 ¼ 1 (13'7 in high school)
9 Kelly Phillips SR Virginia Tech 4.10m 13-5 ¼ (Did not vault in high school, but was high level gymnast and dad is VT coach)
9 Joanna Wright SR Georgia Tech 4.10m 13-5 ¼ (12'1 in high school, fairly good sprinter and hurdler)
11 Sandi Morris FR North Carolina 4.00m 13-1 ½ (13'1 in high school, sub 15 100hh and is pretty tall)
12 Amy Fryt SR Duke 4.00m 13-1 ½ (11'7 in high school)
NH Rachel Fisher SO BYU (13+ high school)
NH Sonia Grabowska JR Utah State (member of Polish national team in high school)
NH Leslie Brost JR North Dakota St. (13'5 in high school)
NH Christen Botteron JR BYU (only result i can see is 11'6 in high school)
NH Shade Weygandt SO Texas Tech (14' high school)


I know it would be a big ask (and maybe even a bit controversial) but would anybody know the technical model for the high school/club/overseas coach compared to the college coach? I always find it interesting to compare how an athlete will fare in different systems. Of course we always have to take into account that there are other things happening in life and not everything will be attributed to "the system" - however, I think it is still a good way of comparing success rates with different training methods.

You would also have to take into account physical improvement, time allotted to training and availability of services (physio etc.) and facilities. That said, all of the above will generally be improved with a move to college unless the freshman comes from some sort of super-club.

As for this list, I'm only vaguely familiar with one of these girls - don't know her personally but I do know her high school/club coach and he's a Petrov guy. Not sure what training model her college coach follows though.

Also some of the girls from Europe may also have been heavily Russian influenced. To my knowledge, the influence is strongest in Germany and Poland so there's a very good chance that an athlete from those two countries (or anywhere closely surrounding) will have a Petrov/Russian background, although as always there are no guarantees.

In general I think that the colleges in the US are really under-performing compared to what a lot of the high school and club coaches are achieving. Not true for everybody (especially Arkansas from what I can see - they've been fantastic), but the college system seems to be the weakest link as a whole. The US is still the only country in the world that I know of that puts up multiple 13ft girls and 16ft guys out of high school on a clockwork basis every year. Add to that, many of the high school kids are rushed to heights in order to get points for the team - a lot of coaches may not be able to take the time they need to develop the technique or they may not know how! As a result, there is still room for technical improvement especially for guys from what I can see. Considering that training time is increased, physical training is more intense, sports services improves, facilities will usually improve drastically and add to that the incentives of scholarships and you should expect a better performance from colleges. IMO there should be more girls jumping 14'+ in college considering the number of 13' girls coming into the mix. And I think a 1ft improvement over 4 years of vastly improved conditions (in many cases, especially D1 colleges) would not be unreasonable for most girls jumping around 13 feet. That's not a knock against anybody in particular, I hardly know any college coaches in the US - that's just a general population level thing that I see.

Just looking at the college system as a black box - the elite and pre-elite level results coming out does not correlate with the level and amount of talent coming in, especially considering the general improvement of circumstances for the athlete. Anyway... words of an outsider, though I think my sentiments are reflected by others in the other thread. And out of that list on face value I only see a couple of very good improvements. If we're to look for impressive improvements, I would look outside of college - especially true for female athletes in my opinion.

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby dj » Fri Mar 18, 2011 5:56 am

Good morning,

Thanks for the high school numbers...

I knew somewhat the backgound of Denise, Allison, Sandi and Shade.

The HS to College numbers are typical (if you (she) were extremely lucky) except for the two 11-6ers that jumped over 13'... somebody, them, the coach or coaches figured something out.

The 12-6 to 12-9 talent out of high school!! All i can say is we have done them a HUGE disservice..

I worked (along with other coaches) with two women that jumped 12-9 in high school and both of them FINALLY jumped 13-1 as seniors in college. One had the same coach for four years; with a European background the other had 3 coaches in 4 years.

i know most coaches will say they are following the Petrov model but don't know if they truly are getting it...

I know that Sandi had every "stone turned" by her parents, and Rusty, to get it done correctly. My wish is that this will continue for her and the other world class talent that we are producing herenin the states. we must look at the physics for the answers.

Back in my day the common "coaching method" was "if it looks like a duck and walks like a duck (i used to walk "pegion toed" to classes because Bob Hayes ran "toed in") ...it (I) might become a duck. (and run fast)

In other words copy what the world record holders "looked" like and you might become a world record holder...

That worked to a point and still works, but to "copy" what they were doing you had to change or match the "physical" in terms of strength, technique and range of motion..

(I know i'm dragging this out... and haven't even made my point yet... but i will.... and it is a very..very...very important point....one for the ages..)

In the vault for example, on steel poles you ran as fast as you could, controlled, slid the pole into the box, reached up, jumped up.. before the pole hit the back of the box (free takeoff) and could yank your shoulder out of joint!!!!!!!!!!!!! You continued by driving the chest toward the pole, swing through, long and fast to vertical and off the pole. you matched the grip with the standards so you could "peak" at the right place.

Then along came fibreglass.... the pole shouldn't matter.. right.. do what's above and you will "look like a vaulter, walk like a vaulter, quack like a vaulter (mallard or hen) and be a "vaulter."

An important note here is the physics doesn't change, or shouldn't change from steel to fibreglass.

Side note.. story..

Why? The physics and "look" have to match. In other words looking like a "free takeoff" or even a world record vault is not enough.. it has to have the physics (physical action) to distinguish it from a 4 meter vault or a 6 meter vault... agreed??!!

High jump.. i was a "scissor" jumper in high school.. tried the "straddle/roll" in college but could scissor 5-10 either way.. we landed in sand or sawdust. My first year out of college i was coaching and bought rubber pits for the high jump and pole vault... I jumped 6-6 with no training or practice.. with what turned out to be the Fosbury Flop...

Why because the "physics" was there in the scissor, which was nothing more than a Michael Jordan sprint at the basket and doing a slam duck. I could do that (although my dunk was not a "slam") running from mid court, going down the right side of the lane, sprinting, curving, leaping and dunking the basketball.

Why did i go from a 5-10 scissor to a 6-6 flop?? Because the pit allowed me to "lay back" without the fear of breaking my neck or a hundred other bones in my body.. foam pits allowed the "physics" to be utilized.

Back to the vault.....

Free Takeoff... go back to what steel vaulters were trying to do, first because it was the only way to "physically" keep from damaging your shoulder, because the poles were none forgiving...

The "words"/terms had not been "coined (pre-jump and free takeoff) back then and those are attributed correctly and admirably to Alan... but the physics was emphasised by a few Americans and most European coaches and jumpers...

Sadly and disturbingly 1000's of American coaches, especially in the 80's started teaching 'pole bending", and it is continuing, now, today day after day, everywhere in the high schools because most do not have vault coaches....... only distance and sprint coaches... those coaches see their own kids stiff poling and the "champion vaulters" bending... and "conclude" that the only way to pole vault is by "forcing" the pole to bend.

They tell them to run faster, hold higher and force bend the pole!!!

This goes on all over the USA... and is perpetuated even by the coaches that know the vault but still do clinics and tell everyone that pole vaulting is a "catapulting" event. you got to load the pole so it will throw you... up....Those "listening", sprint, throws and distance coaches with "no" knowledge of a true vault "model" or the physics of the event are now armed with one piece of information that "validates" their knowledge" of the vault... I get so "pi$$d off when i'm walking out of a clinic or standing in the hall where a vault "guru" has just told everyone that "you have to bend the pole, line up vertically so this "majic' pole can throw you like an arrow (sack of potatoes)high in the sky....." the Ba... scratching, tobacco chewing high school football coach is in another coaches face telling him "i told you that you have to use your muscles and hold high to bend the pole so you can let it throw you over the bar!!!!!!!!! Our guys are "Wussies".. let me get our football linebackers out there they will show you!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This standard American approach is getting kids killed....

As to the "model'.. there is one.. ONE thought process that was consistent for a select few America coaches in the 70's that was "lost" in the late 80's when those vaulters "retired" and their coaches were no longer listened to. That's when America went into the "pole bending" phase and this was perpetuated by the increasing numbers of pole manufacturing companies that wanted to build the better "rocket". we have too many "kinds" of pole that don't may not have consistant bend qualities within there own brand much less from complany to company.. Bubka's physics plus the pole design (pattern) and where he griped based on that pattern created his ability to proform his Model and according to physics.. this tells me that all those vaulters today that are trying very hard to copy his model and never going to make it exactly unless they use a pole with "like" patterns.... but that's another stroy.....

The American general Junior/High school track coaching pool was/has been made up of sprint and distance coaches (and generally football coaches for the sprints and throws).... that's where you didn't necessarily have to have a "coach" in the sense that you needed to "over see" a lot of the details of technique like the vault. In the distance you worked harder... you will reach your talent level. In the sprints you first recruit the fasters and then you sprint every day.. look like a duck, walk like a duck, you will be the duck.. Provided you have some talent..

Now to distance and sprint coaches credit that has changed in many places... and it has changed for the same reason the vault has changed... you now have "private" distance and sprint coaches... that the kids are coming to, in high school, like club volleyball, baseball and we have done in the vault... peogress is being made that way but not at the high school track..........

So...... ooo we have to change our "thought" process away for Pole bending to...... drum roll.....

Pre-jump-free takeoff.

Alan created the "terms" but with no disrespect the process was there with steel poles "slid the pole into the box, reached up, jumped up before the pole hit the back of the box."

Tellez was using that though process when Isakson and others were training at UCLA in the 70's... Bell and Tully always tried to do this.. In Practice Tully would put chalk in the box and try and get the pole tip down, the reach up fully extended when the pole tip was 8" from the back of the box.. after each jump we would check the touch point in the box AND we had chalk across the runway at the takeoff so we could see where the takeoff foot spikes hit.. always trying to get an 8" slide and a point vertical from the top grip...

The Europeans were doing this (and fortunately have stayed with it as the "foundation" of their "model"... and more on that later).. i saw and talked with Volkov in 1979 and he said his focus was to "attack" the pole before it hit the back of the box with the arms reaching as high as possible.. that was the only way he felt he could use the high grips safely and make the pit... he practiced this from 6 steps and a 16' grip... bending the pole, going into the air and coming back onto the runway... I convinced Tully to do these drills in 1983/84... this was with no spotter or cable... Unbelievable site when he did it right.. gripping 16/16-4.. he went so high off the ground i made him stop, not afraid of the drill but of turning and ankle coming back onto the runway... that's when i got the idea to build the cable/harness system i had at my training site in Gainesville and have posted clips of on here...

Petrov made this "free takeoff" a point of focus (and difference between the then current American vaulters and his vaulters, Bubka) when he did his first talk in Reno...

In 1983 Andji Kresinski... did a clinic in Knoxville, Tenn... one of the drills he showed everyone was planting the pole into the base of a hurdle. He emphasised that the pole tip should touch down 15cm/6" before the hurdle base and the top arm must be extended before the pole hits the base... same thing with the sliding box... even in the 70's with earl and at Florida we put chalk or sometimes a small strip of wood 6/8" before the hurdle or back of the sliding box as our target...

I did this drill yesterday (plant against the hurdle) with this young vaulter i'm working with... and a comment his father made is actually the reason i am writing ALL this...

We were working with the decathletes in the hurdles so i set up a "side drill" for the 13 year old vaulter/decathlete... 2/4 step plants into the hurdle base... i placed a wood strip 8 inches from the base on the plant side... and i put a small strip of carpet at the vertical point of takeoff... he had to plant, with the pole held with the tip down and the top grip at the ear... takeoff toe outside the carpet strip.. jump as the tip hit the wood strip and have the arms fully extended when the tip hit the "solid" hurdle base... when you do it correctly the pole will flex a little and the hurdle will slide so you don't end up on your back on the track... you need to plant in the "center point" of the hurdle so it will slide straight.

His father walked over as we finished and said "this technique is what my Hungarian coach was teaching me 15 years ago... jump before the pole hits the back of the box... and extend the arms fully..."

He was considered and Olympic talent for his country and went to train all over Europe, Germany, Ukraine, etc.. a little in France but mostly eastern block... he trained 6 months to a year in those countries from 1992 to 2001 with several coaches... he was smittin by the vault.. hence he just had 8 of the 10 finalist in his countries Mid-season club championship held 3 days ago...

He said and emphasized that every European coach focused on this point!!!! What we now call Pre-jump/free takeoff because of Alan/Petrov/Bubka..

I know everyone seems to have agreed and accepted that this is the "axis" of any model we should have... but why especially here in America we have placed out focus on bigger poles, higher grips and catapulting!!!!!!!!!!

I think we have had access to many poles.... and i think you will see a decline even in Europe as they get more access... and start (have already started thinking) thinking bigger is always better regardless of the takeoff "model"..

Fortunately Europe seems to be "ahead" of us with staying with the free takeoff model.. Although i don't think our world champion has a true free takeoff and keeps looking for that "bigger air" pole...

Where is his focus and where should it be...

I feel we should focus on the Pre-jump/free takeoff..(as the only model) and "invent' or devise daily drills that emphasis that position and feel.

The physics from this Pre-jump and Free takeoff "model"...

"Slide the pole into the box... jump and fully extends the arms just before the pole tip hits the back of the box....."

Sets the stage for the physics and technique for the rest of the jump...

The accuracy and speed of the run sets the stage for a pre-jump/free takeoff...

Our "point of emphases on technique here in America is one of several (the main one in my opinion) reason we don't have the men and women's vault world record holders...

dj

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby altius » Sat Mar 19, 2011 3:37 am

Whatever you do, please don't shoot the messenger!
Its what you learn after you know it all that counts. John Wooden

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby dougb » Sat Mar 19, 2011 8:06 pm

Not shooting any one, but we don't need to rewrite history to sell the message.
Stiff pole vaulting did not use a pre jump. the reason is that there was a strong negative feedback mechanism at work.
Namely, the pain in your shoulder and lower back if your step wasn't under your top hand. The aim was to get off of the ground
as smothly as possible in order to maintain pole speed.

The fiberglass pole makes the pre jump possible by absobing the shock! Just like the landing pads allow changes in technique so does the pole.

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby altius » Sun Mar 20, 2011 5:37 am

dougb wrote: Just like the landing pads allow changes in technique so does the pole. Yes But!!!!
Its what you learn after you know it all that counts. John Wooden

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Re: Where did they come from?

Unread postby PVR » Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:15 am

Pam Selberg, 9'6" High school , 13' 2 1/4" College


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