November 18, 2023 2 min read 2 Comments
November 18, 2023
Stories You Might Want To Read
1. Why Racewalking Is Going Away At The National Senior Games.
When the National Senior Games Association said it was going to discontinue Racewalking at The National Senior Games after the 2025 Games in Des Moines, the NSGA mentioned "other factors" in the decision.
Those "other factors" include a growing need for a larger penalty box for illegal form. It would be full, if there were enough judges to raise their paddles scolding the illegal walkers and sidelining them.
The problem is there are not enough judges for NSG track & field. And as Racewalkers get older it is more of a challenge to fulfill the requirement of hip over straight knee as you come through the stride.
The NSGA's mission is to make the experience superb for the athlete. To do that, you need resources for track & field officials, among other things.
So the decision to cut Racewalking has to do with declining numbers and cost, but another factor is the NSG needed to stay true to the sport. Besides, some Racewalkers who have written Geezer Jock this week feel ok about doing only Powerwalking.
After 2025, Racquetball, and Hammer Throw (see picture of Patti Baker at the end of this story) will also be discontinued. Racquetball has seen steadily declining numbers and has held on as a competition...by its finger tips.
The hammer, I have been told, is truly about costs. The high-fenced cages to protect onlookers from projectiles that could kill them are expensive and to install them for three days is a chore.
As for hurdles still being out of the NSG, there is no good excuse. As James Malin pointed out, all the big high schools have hurdles tucked away on their grounds.
2. The Really Good News About The National Senior Games.
The National Senior Games are not the USA Track & Field Masters. There is a difference between the two, obviously. USATF athletes compare the way the two run events and you just can't do it, even though many USATF officials volunteer to help with NSG.
Where the National Senior Games stands out is sports offerings and this week's announcement of sports added means it just got a whole lot more fun.
New sports for the Games in Des Moines in 2025 include Beach Volleyball, Billiards (8-Ball), Disc Golf, Power Lifting, and Tai Chi.
Power lifting? You bet there is a place for it. Older people are building their strength, which means avoiding harder falls because they are able to get a strong arm out to catch themselves.
New events will be Basketball Skills, Golf Scramble, Non-Ambulatory Pickleball, and a 1-Mile Road Race. You have to love the small Midwest state associations that really pushed the basketball skills competitions over the last few years.
3. Hammer Time
Geezer Jock Patti Baker shows her form and effort in this hammer throw. Be impressed. At least she will still have USATF events to show her stuff.
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