Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Pole Series

I'm asked all the time about my poles so I thought I would clear up some of that here today. Of course a man's pole is very personal and I am lucky to have the best. Since 1975 Bruce Caldwell has been behind what I use. First as the National Sales Manager for Skypole, then when he started FibreSport, and now with best poles I have ever used, Essx.

My meet series is made up of seven Essx custom carbons. I have 15' 1" (4.60m) sails on a 14' 7" (4.45M) body with 5.5" (12cm) cut off the bottoms so they roll. Then the tops are trimmed to between 13' 1" (4m) and 13' 7" (4.14m), with my current max grip at 13' 4" (4.07m). After all of this, my poles are flexed on a 14’ 1” (4.30m) scale so I can relate them to the poles I am most familiar with. They begin at 15.8 and end at 14.2, so that’s like 167 – 184 (76-84 kg) in lbs. I jump at about 167-68 (76-77 kg). I won World Masters Games in Sydney on a 15.7 and jumped 13’ 5 ¼” (4.10m) at Reno on a 14.4. These poles pick me up better and have more blow off the top. That’s what it will take to get me to 14’ (4.27m). Well, and getting in better shape.

I like to have a brief warm up and then do my real warm up in the meet so I have more energy when it counts. I typically start my run in a meet at 10 steps for two heights, then go to 12 steps for two heights, and then to 14 steps for the remainder. I’m always trying to get on each pole from one stride closer as that gives me 6” (15 cm) more height per pole. I can and will run from 16 steps if needed.

The poles took some getting used to because they are quicker and less forgiving. I’ve been getting lots of height on bars but haven’t really found the timing to leave up the high ones until Reno. My prep for that meet was really good as well as a lot of active rest activity at the hotel leading up to it. I felt really free mentally and loose physically. Looking forward to getting back to training. Thanks for being here! Bubba

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