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A false start in athletics new rule

In track and field (athletics), do you agree with the immediate disqualification upon a false start (current rule) or do you prefer a second false start and then dsq (old rules)?


  1. One false start, and you should be DQ’d.
  2. You practice during practice, not at a meet.
  3. The people jumping the gun are trying to cheat.
  4. Or, (with the old rules) they are trying to mess with the other runners, which is poor sportsmanship.
  5. The first jump got charged to the field.
  6. A second jump would DQ the individual runner.
  7. So, the person who jumped first took away any forgiveness for an honest flinch.
  8. If it was an honest flinch by a novice, then it’s learning experience.
  9. The consequences force you to try harder to follow the rules next time.


false start
Jon Drummond disqualified for a false start and refusing to leave the track


More False Starts in Combined Events

Different rules for different competitions may or may not use the no false start rule, however, combined events always allow more false starts.

When each competitor was allowed 1 and was kicked out on the second false start the athletes in the decathlon were allowed 2 and kicked out on their third false start.

Relay races are the same as individual races they are not allowed any extra false starts


Twitch or Flinch no longer a false Start


The danger of one inadvertent twitch ruining the greatest day of a sprinter’s life has been removed after athletics’ governing body softened the rules on false starts ahead of the London Olympics.


The little-publicized clarification by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) permits athletes to move in the starting blocks without being disqualified so long as their hands do not leave the ground or their feet the blocks.

Previously, such twitching or flinching could have resulted in disqualification at the discretion of the starter.

After reading the Up to Date ‘IAAF Starting Guidelines March 2015’


Under Rule 4.5

When considering protests as to whether a start contravened the rules or was otherwise unfair, the Start Referee’s judgment is crucial.


He may:

 If he is in any doubt, allow Athletes to run “under protest” [Rule 146.4(a)] if the SIS indicates an illegal start and there is a good reason to suggest that the information is inaccurate, or there is an equipment malfunction.

No protest will be allowed if the SIS is working correctly and a false start has been indicated.

Referees and others must be aware that the SIS may be working correctly but “incorrectly” indicate a false start –


Because motion by an Athlete that does not include or result in the Athlete’s foot/feet leaving contact with the footplate/plates of the starting blocks, or the Athlete’s hand/hands losing contact with the ground, shall not be considered the commencement of the start.


The Evolution of the Sprint Start rules

Is this good?

should flinchers be dqed?

Let me try and think about how the rules have changed

  1. One warning per athlete and then dqed if the same athlete breaks.
  2. In the hope of keeping track meets moving along, without the threat of multiple false starts in the sprints, the IAAF Congress changed the rule in 2001, permitting one false start per race in events of 400 meters or less. The first false start by any runner was charged to the field. Any subsequent false starts resulted in disqualification. The rule went into effect on Jan. 1, 2003.
  3. One Automatic DQ for any movement in the blocks after the set position. During the next few years, however, it appeared that some slower starting runners were intentionally false-starting to put pressure on sprinters who were generally faster out of the blocks. As a result, IAAF changed the rule again in 2009. Except in multi-events competition, all false starts would now result in immediate disqualification.
  4. One DQ for leaving the blocks, movement not judged as a false start.


Also, does anyone remember how the IAAF tried to introduce that stupid beep or gun recorded sound?

And about 90% of people who were asked to vote on it hated it.

Click here to read full article



false start

While defending the current zero-tolerance false start rule. Consequently, IAAF officials released a study of false starts from three major meets preceding Daegu.

Hence The IAAF noted that there were 26 false starts at the 2007 World Championships, 33 at the 2008 Olympics and 25 at the 2009 World Championships.

While all under the previous rule.

Furthermore, with zero tolerance in place, only 10 false starts were committed at the 2011 World Championships.

While Interestingly, men have been more likely to false start than women.

Most noteworthy in the 2007 World Championships, 18 men false-started, to only eight women. While in Beijing the ratio of men to women was 26-7; in Berlin, it was 18-7.

Also, six of the 10 false starts in Daegu were committed by men.





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