Athletics: Disciplines And Benefits

Athletics is made up of different disciplines that concern running, throwing, jumping, walking and combined tests. Those who practice athletics aim to exceed the opponent’s performance in terms of speed, endurance, distance or height.
Athletics: disciplines and benefits

If you practice one of the disciplines of track and field, you will have to give your best to have a physical condition that allows you to overcome your limits and reach your goals. This way your performance will be better and you will be able to beat your opponents.

Competitions in athletics

Athletics features a wide range of competitions, both individual and collective. They range from jumping competitions to those on the track with obstacles, from throws to combined tests. For each discipline there are variants characterized by the use of specific tools. For example, weights (shot put) or javelins (javelin throw) can be used for throws.

It is a fairly easy sport to practice because it does not require special facilities or sophisticated technologies. The various disciplines have simple rules that remain the same for all competitions, including the Olympics. These characteristics have allowed a large number of people to approach athletics as both amateurs and professionals.

athletics competitions

The various disciplines of athletics

If you practice this sport or you are simply a fan, you will have noticed that the various disciplines of athletics are grouped into four categories. Each category refers to the performance of a specific “movement”. Let’s see in detail what we are talking about:

The race

  • Speed ​​races. They are the most followed. You have to run as fast as possible up to a maximum distance of 400 meters.
  • The middle distance races (or simply middle distance). These are races that are held over a distance between 800 and 3000 meters.
  • Cross-country competitions. Distances are greater than 3000 meters.
  • The obstacle course. The distance traveled is up to 3000 meters and there are obstacles to jump along the way.
  • Relays. They are races that are based on the speed and endurance of the athletes. During the race it is necessary to pass the baton from one athlete to another.
women participating in an athletics competition

The jump

This category includes four jumping variants:

  • The long jump. You run at high speed and at a predetermined point you make a jump by falling on the sand. Athletes have three options for taking the longest jump.
  • The high jump. Flexibility, agility, strength and coordination are required to perform this type of jump. Athletes must be very tall. Men at least between 1.90 and 2 meters in height and women 1.80.
  • The pole vault. It is considered one of the most dangerous tests. The test consists in taking a short run and overcoming a bar placed at a certain height (without letting it fall) using a pole.
  • The triple jump. It is very similar to the long jump. The difference is that three consecutive jumps are made before hitting the sand area.
high jump discipline of athletics

The launch

Within this category we find:

  • The shot put. It is a modern test which involves throwing a massive steel ball as far as possible. The weight of the sphere varies according to the categories.
  • The discus throw. You have to throw an object with a circular shape and a certain weight as far as possible. For women, the disc weighs one kilo and has a diameter of 18 centimeters. For men, the weight is two kilos and has a diameter of 22 centimeters.
  • The javelin throw. It is a kind of metal or fiberglass spear that must be thrown as far as possible.
  • The hammer throw. It is a heavy metal sphere attached to a handle by a steel chain. Also in this case it must be thrown as far as possible.
the launch

The march

It is necessary to travel a distance ranging from 20 to 50 kilometers in the shortest possible time. The peculiarity of this discipline is that you have to do it by walking quickly and that at least part of the two feet always touch the ground. You can neither trot nor run.

As you have seen, in athletics there are various disciplines that you can practice. An athlete can participate in several specialties within his discipline.

the march in athletics

The benefits of practicing athletics

The various disciplines contribute to:

  • Improve your joints. They make them more elastic and reactive.
  • Increase the flexibility of muscles and tendons.
  • Increase the strength, coordination and dexterity of the lower and upper limbs.
  • Improve heart and lung capacity allowing for better oxygen transfer.
  • Stimulate bone growth. You will be taller, less fat and you will define your physique in a proportionate way.

The different disciplines of track and field are very demanding, require efforts and considerable sacrifices. Those who want to practice them will have to change their lifestyle. Don’t despair though, you will greatly improve your physical appearance and your health. Try one of the disciplines we told you about, you won’t be disappointed!

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