The issue of safety regarding the pole vault in track and field has been a hot topic this spring after the recent deaths of three competitors. Grinnell College men’s track coach Will Freeman was a vaulter at the University of Florida in the 1970’s, he says it was a good career that took him a lot of places.Freeman, who competed in the U-S Olympic trials in 1976 and 1980, says the event carried some risk when he was a competitor.Freeman says people got injured, but he didn’t see a number of fatalities. He says two of the three recent poll vaulting deaths happened when the kids bounced out of the pit and landed on concrete, and he says the last thing you want around a pit is concrete. Freeman feels the poles are better than in past years.
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