Ban competitors because: Flex-Foot Cheetah prosthesis Blades act as springs storing energy No calf muscles to tire out “…the carbon fiber blades return around 80 to 90% of the energy they store under compression”(Tucker and Dugas) In comparison, for human legs, “…energy return ranges between 30% and 70%”(Tucker and Dugas)
Ban competitors because: Prosthesis is lighter than human leg “Pistorius’s rivals are swinging a lower leg that weighs about 5.7 kilograms, where as his lower leg only weighs 2.4 kilograms”(Eveleth, 1) Can swing legs faster Feet are on the ground longer More time and force on ground results in more force pushing forward
Allow Competitors because: “The reduced weight of his legs does reduce the amount of energy he needs, but springs do not create energy, they only store it”(Case) According to researcher 600 meters minimum distance needed for benefit
Slower start time because: Must start in an upright position Advantage of staying low, “It is easier to overcome inertia and create momentum, which is the key to good acceleration and to a greater top end speed”(Lee)
How can we mediate the controversy? Allow Flex-foot cheetah in specific events if research shows there is no competitive advantage Include an asterisk next to their name and record Asterisk is already used and accepted in sports for records in question
How can we mediate the controversy? Additional research for sprints longer than 400 meters Additional research would be required for other sporting events and arm amputees
Works Cited Berkowitz, Brad. "The Sports Asterisk." Examiner.com. Clarit Digital Group LLC, 3 June 2012. Web. 02 Apr. 2013. Case, Ethan. "Oscar Pistorius Olympics Controversy: Why Prosthetic Legs Are Not Likely to Lend an Edge." PolicyMic. Mic Network Inc., Sept. 2012. Web. 02 Apr. 2013. Eveleth, Rose. "Does Double-Amputee Oscar Pistorius Have an Unfair Advantage at the 2012 Olympic Games?" Smithsonian Magazine. Smithsonian Institution, 23 July 2012. Web. 04 Apr. 2013. Lee, Jimson. "Staying Low on a 40 Yard Dash or 100 Meter Start." SpeedEndurancecom. Sport Sites, 31 Jan. 2008. Web. 09 Apr. 2013. Tucker, Ross, and Jonathan Dugas. "The Science of Sport: The Scientific Interpretation of Oscar Pistorius Research." The Science of Sport: The Scientific Interpretation of Oscar Pistorius Research. The Science of Sport, 23 Aug. 2011. Web. 04 Apr. 2013.