The Naked Scientists

The Naked Scientists Forum

Author Topic: Sports Records  (Read 5307 times)

Offline Bob1942

  • First timers
  • *
  • Posts: 6
    • View Profile
Sports Records
« on: 01/09/2004 09:19:29 »
At each Olympics people run faster,jump higher & longer,throw the  javelin further etc.What is the ultimate record that could be achieved by  man(& of course woman)?


 

Offline tweener

  • Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1144
    • View Profile
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #1 on: 01/09/2004 17:38:16 »
I have no idea, but it is interesting to contrast human performance gains with those of animals such as race horses.  World records stand far longer and get broken by much smaller margins in horse racing.  So, it really is power of the mind.

----
John - The Eternal Pessimist.
 

Offline chris

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 5339
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • The Naked Scientist
    • View Profile
    • The Naked Scientists
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #2 on: 02/09/2004 21:37:40 »
Hi Bob

I think the olympics is telling us some really interesting things about genetics. Have a look at the people that are now winning all the races. The high power races (sprints etc) strongly favour black Africans, or people of that origin.

Endurance sports favour thin lithe people - look at the marathon

And the high jump is won by spindly blond Russians and Scandinavians.

The shot put, meantime, is won by Russian women who used to be men  (and possibly Madonna next year, looking at her arms !).

I would really like to get some blood and do some comparative genetic analyses in these people to see what it is that the Black guys have that makes them incredible sprinters, the white guys good swimmers etc etc.

Then we could breed a population of super athletes for competition when the olympics finally comes to the UK (i.e. once Cherie Blair is off the case - mind you with her to look at they will probably see some amazing record times).

Chris



"I never forget a face, but in your case I'll make an exception"
 - Groucho Marx
 

Offline Bob1942

  • First timers
  • *
  • Posts: 6
    • View Profile
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #3 on: 05/09/2004 11:44:02 »
"Then we could breed a population of super athletes for competition"

Didn't an Austrian try this in the 1930's?
 

Offline Corbeille

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 205
    • View Profile
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #4 on: 05/09/2004 15:51:54 »
quote:
Originally posted by Bob1942

"Then we could breed a population of super athletes for competition"

Didn't an Austrian try this in the 1930's?



I thought of this when I saw the medal ceremony for the men's relay in Athens. Twelve black men on the podium. Enough to have Adolf spinning in his bomb crater. I also wonder if it's a cultural thing.
Ethiopians have their heroes in long distance running and are inspired and try to emulate them. The UK generally does well in equestrian events which is a middle or upper class pursuit. I'm a cycling and football (soccer) fan. I can't think of any asian footballers but have seen many asian people on the terraces. I can't think of any black professional cyclists. It would be absurd to say that black and asian people are not physically capable of excelling at these sports as they excell at almost every other.
Some research needed here me thinks.


you can't crack me I'm a rubber duck!
 

Offline chris

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 5339
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • The Naked Scientist
    • View Profile
    • The Naked Scientists
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #5 on: 06/09/2004 13:21:11 »
Hmm, I think there really are horses for courses. You don't tend to see many champion black swimmers - that prize usually falls to the white guys because they are better built for swimming. Ditto lanky Scandinavians and the high jump. The black guys usually wipe the floor with the sprints and power events.

British gold medallist Kelly Holmes would be a very interesting person to study, genetically, because she is mixed-race and therefore carries a number of extremely advantageous alleles (genes) from both caucasian and black backgrounds. It would be interesting to see what genes, or groups of genes, overlap with black and white athletes from various classes and events.

Either way, thumbs up to her !

Chris

"I never forget a face, but in your case I'll make an exception"
 - Groucho Marx
 

Offline tweener

  • Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1144
    • View Profile
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #6 on: 08/09/2004 03:18:40 »
Chris, I have to disagree with you.  I think the main reason you see primarily white swimmers is that swimming facilities and coaching are usually only available to upper middle and upper class children.  Same for equestrian events.

Other sports are affected by cultrual bias.  You don't see any soccer stars from the USA because there just isn't that much interest in that sport here (that is changing in the past several years, so watch out!).  The same for black youth and cycling.  There really hasn't been that much interest in this country, and fewer black children have the opportunity (and peer pressure) to excel in cycling as opposed to basketball or football or track.

----
John - The Eternal Pessimist.
 

Offline chris

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 5339
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • The Naked Scientist
    • View Profile
    • The Naked Scientists
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #7 on: 08/09/2004 13:09:53 »
I respect your point John, which may well be true of the US, but I don't think there's much evidence that black people here are denied access to swimming pools. And what about the high jump ?

I do, however, admit that there might be a cultural bias towards specific sports, including swimming.

Chris

"I never forget a face, but in your case I'll make an exception"
 - Groucho Marx
 

Offline tweener

  • Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1144
    • View Profile
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #8 on: 09/09/2004 03:30:23 »
Black people are not denied access to swimming, skating, gymnastics etc. equipment, but there is a cultural bias in the sense that they are proportionally poorer and tend to go to schools that don't have such equipment.  Thinking about it, the cultural bias is probably stronger.

If you want long and lanky, just look at our basketball players, most of which are also black.

I really don't know, but I really hesitate to draw conclusions based on race because it really comes down to some natural talent mixed with lots of very good coaching, a good sized dollop of luck and a HUGE portion of really hard WORK.

----
John - The Eternal Pessimist.
 

Offline Ylide

  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 905
    • View Profile
    • http://clem.mscd.edu/~mogavero
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #9 on: 11/09/2004 03:59:24 »
I've read somewhere that black folks tend on average to have a greater % of fast-twitch muscle fibers.  Hence their excellence in sports where quick bursts of power are important:  football, boxing, sprinting, and the like.  I believe they tend to have a more dense bone structure on average as well.  I can tell you from personal experience that thick, dense bone makes for a horrid swimmer.  Before I got chubby, I couldn't go into deep water because I sink like a stone.  

I suspect it's somewhere between Chris and John's positions.  At least in the US, there is a definate lack of availability of swimming facilities for poor communities and those communities tend to have a higher percentage of African-Americans in most urban areas.  Now you have fewer African-Americans with access to swimming facilities and coaching/training, coupled with the physiological differences that might make a higher percentage them less able as swimmers, and there's your racial discrepancy.  



This message brought to you by The Council of People Who Are Sick of Seeing More People
 

Offline tweener

  • Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1144
    • View Profile
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #10 on: 14/09/2004 02:29:33 »
I had a black friend once that did not know how to swim.  I tried teaching him, but he would sink "like a stone".  Also, he couldn't point his toes - his feet were perpendicular to his shins, no matter what.  He never did learn to swim.

And, I don't really doubt there is some racial difference in the overall statistical analysis.

----
John - The Eternal Pessimist.
 

Offline OmnipotentOne

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 146
    • View Profile
Re: Sports Records
« Reply #11 on: 16/09/2004 20:05:29 »
Its weird how EVERY generation is entirely different from the last.  I know everything i like my (future) kids will consider the stupidest things ever....I have 2 african friends, there both white and neither of them can swim or run.  SO whats up with US's basketball team this year?

To see a world in a grain of sand.
 

The Naked Scientists Forum

Re: Sports Records
« Reply #11 on: 16/09/2004 20:05:29 »

 

SMF 2.0.10 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
SMFAds for Free Forums