The other day I was thinking about pole vaulting. Not doing it myself, mind you. There’s no senior division in track and field like there is in golf. Too bad, actually. Who wouldn’t want to see AARP members doing the 100-meter hurdles?
No, I was thinking about why you never see recreational pole vaulting. Think about it. You see people playing other sports in parks and in their backyards. But you never see people pole vaulting for fun and fitness. Why is that?
Are there economic barriers? How much can a pole cost? Then you just need something to jump over and a soft place to land. How hard can it be?
Well, I’ll tell you how hard it can be. The poles cost anywhere from $300 on up. The standards start around $1500. I looked up the landing pads and that’s where it really goes off the rails. Those pads cost anywhere from $4K up to $30K. Obviously, nobody in Congress has been focused on landing pit affordability. What are they even doing in DC?
How are we going to bring pole vaulting to the masses with this kind of price barrier? And how are we going to stay competitive on the world pole vaulting stage? The next Michael Jordan of pole vaulting is out there, but all he has is a broomstick and some couch cushions. We can’t let him down!
We must force Congress to act on pole vault affordability. Or make pole vaulting a constitutional requirement to hold office. No more elections. Just a pole vault competition on the first Tuesday in November.
Someday we will have a future where pole vaulting is affordable and as commonplace in your neighborhood as a basketball hoop or garden gnomes. But until then, I’m sure you can come up with your own affordable comfy place to land after you’ve used a pole to launch yourself into the air. For example, you could jump over a tree limb and into a lake. Just don’t mention any of this post to your injury attorney should something go awry.
Carry on, Citizens!