Old White Guys Can Jump … The Journey to the World Masters Athletics Championships
This is the first blog of a monthly series that I will write as I reflect on my journey to the World Masters Athletics Championships in Perth in late October/early November
It is now just a little under four months to the start of the World Masters Championships. For those of you that haven’t seen the billboards and crazy TV ad (featuring one of my training partners) these are the global athletics championships for athletes aged 35 to 100+, or in other words the Olympics for old people. The competition is conducted in five-year age groups and the athletic events included are the same as those you will see in Rio, with a few differences, cause some of us are really old. Many former Olympians continue to compete at Masters level and will be in Perth, and the competition is at a very high level. For more information on the Perth event see https://www.perth2016.com/
A little about myself. I am a long jumper and compete in the 45-49 age group. A national level jumper in my youth, after serious injury and surgery I took a long break from the sport before getting involved in Masters competition in my late 30s. In 2013 I competed in the World Championships in Brazil and won bronze in the long jump.
While athletics is generally an individual event, success is strongly influenced by the quality of the team you have around you. Aside from a highly supportive (and long suffering) wife and a great coach and jumps squad, the support of Ryan and the team at Dr7 Physiotherapy and Podiatry is very important for injury prevention and management, and greatly appreciated. Training on average for four hours a day at an often high level of intensity takes a lot out of a very fit but aging body. Massage, physio and podiatry are important components of keeping the body healthy and injury free. While there are no guarantees (think Sally Pearson) the advice, support and treatment Dr7 offer is high quality and increases the chance I will be in peak condition come competition time.
I look forward to catching up in future blogs where I will tell you more about the event, how my preparation is progressing, and outline a day in the life of an old athlete. Until next time.