Marlow wrote: Cooter Brown wrote:
Dave wrote:I'd be curious to know the details of the first fiberglass poles. It would be interesting to know what made the guy who created the first one think it would be a good idea.
Probably, the impetus was a search for lighter materials. Not the first, but an early pole maker was Shakespeare who was and is known for fishing poles and saw another market for their fiberglass. Early on, fiberglass electrical conduit was sometimes used also, specifically for a homemade solution for vaulting poles. Odds are strong that the first fiberglass poles put on the market were not purpose built.
What I want to know, and have never read anything about, is how and who figured out how to properly bend the pole and use its rebound to go higher. The technique is NOT the same between straight-vaulting and fb-vaulting. I had to completely relearn how to vault when I started masters vaulting with fiberglass. When you look back at Pennel, he had already discovered and mastered the technique necessary to utilize the pole's bend.
Here he is in 1963http://www.criticalpast.com/video/65675 ... ps-17-feet
This is well off topic, but ....
I looked at three different recordings on that site: Pennel, Uselses, and Richards.
Pennel looks a lot like a modern vaulter. And if that jump was really at 17', he should have gotten 17'6 that day.
Uselses clearing 16' looked a lot more like a straight pole vaulter than a modern vaulter. I didn't look really carefully, but it didn't look like he had a lot of pushoff. His biggest gain was from a higher handhold rather than any sort of released energy from the pole pushing him up. He also landed in a sawdust pit. That looked pretty frightening.
Finally, Richards was a classic straight pole vaulter and again, that sawdust looked pretty scary.