As the athletes competing in the 2012 Olympic Games begin to descend on London we were left pondering how some of the athletes get their equipment and gear to the games – not to mention other sporting events. Traveling with a shot put probably is a bit annoying, and of course the cyclists don’t have it easy either.
But recently The New York Times noted “For Pole-Vaulters, Clearing the Bar Is the Easy Part.” This had us thinking, how exactly do you travel with a 17-foot pole? While getting it to London is probably a nightmare, so is just getting it to the local track to practice vaulting!
The Times article looked at how Mark Hollis often has to deal with transporting his bag of poles, while keeping the bag under 50 pounds. While most airlines will allow the poles to be checked on the plane – American Airlines will not – it can be a hit or miss affair, much like trying to vault over a bar more than a dozen feet in the air.
Of course the flying is just part of the trip. It isn’t as if the poles will easily fit in a taxi – not even the black cabs in London. So in many cases, vaulters must rent cars and strap the poles on the roof, and simply hope for the best.