Track tests: type, classification and characteristics

Track and field is a more complex sport than you might think, and the track events which compose it, all very varied, are authentic demonstrations of the great physical and mental capacity athletes.

Let’s take a closer look at what exactly these types of tests are, along with the skills needed to be able to pass them, and the number of test types.

    What are trail tests?

    Track events are different activities that are part of athletics. This sport is one of the oldest and practiced throughout history, being composed of different competitions in which jumps, throws of various objects and, of course, races are carried out at different distances.

    Track tests are named because they are usually performed on a track, usually an oval shaped circuit, consisting of two parallel lines joining the ends by two curves. The measurements of the track vary depending on the type of competition to be organized.

    As an ancient human activity, athletics has changed the amount of testing experienced athletes have faced throughout history. What all of these tests have in common is that the athlete must have a great capacity for self-improvement, achieved after strenuous effort which is rewarded in the form of high performance and endurance.

    Athlete skills

    To pass the track tests, you must have well-developed abilities, both physical and mental. The athlete must have impeccable coordination and, to achieve his athletic goals, he must undergo intensive training. Track and field isn’t just about running faster than other contenders. It takes a great deal of preparation and determination to achieve the goals you set for yourself.

    In fact, something that may seem as simple and mundane as a warm-up is essential for success in competition, as well as for encouraging the maintenance of physical integrity and the health of joints, muscles and bones. In addition, the competition has the potential to be so complex that the style in which the race begins can waste precious seconds or get tired faster.

    These physical activities can not only cause great physical wear and tear. Athletes are under a strong mental load because before and during competition they have to react to stimuli and make the relevant decisions to ensure a good result.

      The most important types of track testing

      Then we will see the most famous main track tests and views of international competitions.

      Running on foot

      Foot races are athletic competitions that aim to determine who the competitor obtains cover a walking or running distance in the shortest possible time. In running races, we can distinguish the following six:

      1. Speed ​​race

      In these competitions they must travel between 100 and 400 meters approximately as soon as possible, depending on the distance agreed during the competition itself. Normally, the distance traveled is in a straight line, on level ground without obstacles, especially if it is a relatively small distance like 100 meters.

      At greater distances, it is more common to use the entire track through the curves of the circuit.

      2. Cross-country and middle distance races

      Mid-distance races should cover between 800 and 3000 meters, while in long-distance races the distances exceed 3 kilometers. In this type of race endurance acquires a much more important role than speed.

      3. Road races

      Unlike the previous ones, which take place in the traditional track and field circuit, road races they are characterized to be performed off the stage, in places like highways or roads. The most characteristic example is that of marathons.

      4. Cross-country races

      This type of competition is essentially a long distance race but that it is carried out in various spaces, usually on the ground itself.

      5. Fence crossing race

      It’s a race where there are obstacles along the way. It is inspired by horseback riding, In which the horse has to jump fences, only in this case it is the participants themselves who have to jump.

      6. Relay race

      Groups of four competitors usually participate, Those who have to travel a distance in the shortest possible time, each of them part of the journey.

      Each participant must pass to the next a wooden stick, called a witness, which is the object with which the race is to take place.

      athletic gait

      Sports walking has its origins in Great Britain. It consists of moving, walking, over a distance of between 20 and 50 kilometers. Participants should walk as fast as possible, and always have one foot in contact with the ground.


      There are many competitions with jumps, depending on whether or not there is an object to help yourself to jump with and also the height to overcome.

      1. Pole vault

      It’s a very old competition, dates back to classical Greece, Although it has undergone changes over time. It consists of passing over a crossbar without dropping it, using a hanger as an aid to perform the jump.

      2. Long jump

      The long jump consists of jumping as close as possible to an “ exit plate ”, after running to gain momentum.

      3. High jump

      Similar to pole vault, but without. It consists of jumping on a horizontal bar without bumping into the passage.

      4. Triple salt

      As indicated by his name, it consists of performing three jumps after gaining momentum from the starting plate. The winner is the one who has managed to move more meters in the iron.

      press releases

      Throws basically consist of throwing various objects whenever possible. these it could be a heavy ball, a javelin, a disc or even a hammer, Which is a ball attached to a rope.

      combined tests

      In combined tests, athletes face several track tests in a row.

      Usually these tests are ten and it is called decathlon, although other varieties with less testing exist, such as heptathlon and triathlon.

      Bibliographical references:

      • Camps, J; Gallach, J. (2004). Athletic techniques. Practical teaching manual. Barcelona, ​​Spain. Editorial Paidotribo.
      • Fogons, I. (2000). Athletics. Barcelona, ​​Spain. Editorial Publications INDIA.

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