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    New vs. Old Javelin
    #1
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    How much did the javelin redesigns of 1986 and 1999 reduce javelin marks by?

    I'd estimate that the men's marks were reduced by about 8-10 metres and women's by 5-8. What are your opinions?
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    #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vlasic4Days View Post
    How much did the javelin redesigns of 1986 and 1999 reduce javelin marks by?

    I'd estimate that the men's marks were reduced by about 8-10 metres and women's by 5-8. What are your opinions?
    Mine is that the effect on women's marks was much less than that. From what I remember, distances thrown by those that were in their prime at the time of the change did not drop that much and there wasn't much need for fans to re-calibrate their concept of what was an outstanding throw, a decent throw etc. I actually think that if the new javelin (which is much better at sticking in on landing) hadn't been introduced, Petra Felke's 80.00 would still be the WR just as a number of other marks from that era in other events are still on the books.

    I think the difference to men's distances is probably about 6-8 metres. I think Jan Zelezny's 98.48 may be marginally superior to Uwe Hohn's 104.80 with the old spear.
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    #3
    Just curious.....would the lesser impact on the women's side be a result of the implement spending less time in the air, relatively speaking? Does anyone have anecdotal experience with men's throwers at shorter distances?
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    #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevinR View Post
    Just curious.....would the lesser impact on the women's side be a result of the implement spending less time in the air, relatively speaking? Does anyone have anecdotal experience with men's throwers at shorter distances?
    I think there was some discussion on this board a little while back that the change in javelin spec had little impact on men throwing less than about 50m (just over 160').
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    #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Vlasic4Days View Post
    How much did the javelin redesigns of 1986 and 1999 reduce javelin marks by?

    I'd estimate that the men's marks were reduced by about 8-10 metres and women's by 5-8. What are your opinions?
    I would think about 5-6 metres for the men. I think the main reason for the change was the danger when 90m throws landed flat (which happened often) When those javelins skidded through the turf bad accidents could easily happen. With the new style javelin, with the center of gravity moved forward, the javelin would always stick.
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    #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Per Andersen View Post
    I would think about 5-6 metres for the men. I think the main reason for the change was the danger when 90m throws landed flat (which happened often) When those javelins skidded through the turf bad accidents could easily happen. With the new style javelin, with the center of gravity moved forward, the javelin would always stick.
    This + the almost total elimination of controversies as to whether a throw has landed point first + the fact that a throw of 104.80m at many tracks would not land on grass even if it stuck in.
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Trickstat View Post
    I think there was some discussion on this board a little while back that the change in javelin spec had little impact on men throwing less than about 50m (just over 160').
    Thanks. Much appreciated.
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    #8
    I remember that there was some statistical work done after the changeover but I could not locate the article(s) online.

    Unfortunately, there is not a lot of readily available data to compare old vs new javelin for men:
    • www.alltime-athletics.com has old javelin down to 88m but new javelin down to 85m.
    • The IAAF has new javelin down to 80m but no old javelin list.
    • The IAAF data on individual athlete profiles for those early years is non existent/incomplete


    This means any quick analysis is limited to throws over 88m. Sad...

    Since the first 88m throw in 1964, there were 78 throwers who hit that mark 502 times in the 25 years to 1985 (ancillary throws excluded).

    In the 34 years since 1986, only 44 throwers have hit that distance 345 times.

    The numbers for the old spec. gives 6.4 throws/thrower, whereas the new specification represents 7.8 throws/thrower. This tends to support the idea that the old spec allowed for greater chances of a "lucky" throw to make the all time list.

    The only thrower who hit 88m with both the old and new specification javelin was Tom Petranoff, who had exceeded that distance 23 times from 1982 until 1985 (ancillaries excluded), including a PB of 99.72.

    It took him until 1991 to exceed 88m for the first and only time with the new spec. javelin with an 89.16m throw.

    Curiously, Petranoff was the only thrower to exceed 88m in 1986 when throwing in a competition in March, the last month before the specification change commenced in April. This throw was excluded from all calculations above.

    There were no throws at all over 88m during the four years 1986-1989, indicating the substantial technical and coaching changes required to accommodate the new specification. However, high level throwing recommenced in 1990 with Steve Backley and Patrik Boden exceeding 88m during 1990.
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    #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by El Toro View Post
    There were no throws at all over 88m during the four years 1986-1989, indicating the substantial technical and coaching changes required to accommodate the new specification. However, high level throwing recommenced in 1990 with Steve Backley and Patrik Boden exceeding 88m during 1990.
    There was probably need to adjust technique after the change, but also, the equipment itself evolved with time, as the producers learned how to make javelins that flew farther while conforming to the new specs. That makes it hard to really evaluate the impact of the change.
    Było smaszno, a jaszmije smukwijne...
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    #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Powell View Post
    There was probably need to adjust technique after the change, but also, the equipment itself evolved with time, as the producers learned how to make javelins that flew farther while conforming to the new specs. That makes it hard to really evaluate the impact of the change.
    One way to account for the transition period for design/training/coaching is to simply exclude it from the analysis so you are looking at mature event years only for both old and new spec. Of course, this will reduce the already limited data set even further.

    There is also the collapse of the eastern block and the introduction of OOC drug testing shortly after to consider. You would need to try and calculate what the new normal would be like without those in order to isolate the effect of change of specification.
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