The competıtıon strategy ın hıgh jump and pole vault: how many trıals?
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The pole vault and high jump are events named vertical jumps within track and fields. The aim of the vertical jump events is that the athlete runs on the approach way with proper speed, then jumps upwards and passes over the bar where height is previously determined by the athlete, without dropping the bar to the ground. In the vertical jump events, the competition variables which the starting height, the final height, the difference between the starting and final height, the total number of attempting, the amount of valid and invalid jumps were examined measured within the scope of competition tactics. The aim of this study is to show coaches and athletes how to plan the competition variablesin order to achieve the aimed performance by putting forth their competition strategy features. In addition, the study is going to determine the similarities and differences between podium athletes and other finalist athletes through the example of European championship finals where elite athletes compete. The research group consisted of 223 high jumpers (male: 105, female: 118) and 216 pole vaulters (male: 109, female: 107) competing in the European Championships (6 indoor and 5 outdoor) between 2009 and 2019. Statistical comparison of the podium athletes and remaining finalist athletes’ groups was carried out using Independent Samples t-Test. Pearson correlation coefficients (r) were used to express the relationships between parameters. Linear regression analysis was used to find coefficients of determination (r2 ) for the relationships. Significant differences were found in podium athletes in terms of initial height, final height, difference between them, total number of trials and number of successful trials in both events and both genders. Male and female athletes who have won medals in both high jump and pole vaults have performed a total of 4-8 trials. The difference between the initial height and the final height was 12 ± 4 cm in male high jump podium athletes and 14 ± 3 cm in female high jump athletes; It was found that the male pole vaulters were 34 ± 12 cm and the mean 29 ± 8 cm in females. It is clear that the average of the total number of trials in both events and genders has declined significantly in the last 10 years. The total number of trials was found to be higher in high performing athletes. As a result, it was seen that the medallist athletes had higher initial heights than the other finalists, they reached the final heights with more differences after the initial heights, and the total number of trials and successful trials were higher. In the light of these data, it is recommended that the performance components that are examined and found to be important in this study for vertical jumps be examined in detail by the coaches, and that a strategy for competition management is developed according to the current situation of the athletes.