Short track



Short track

(short track) is a discipline in speed skating. The type of personal-team competitions in which the main task of an athlete on skates is to overcome the distance marked on the ice hockey field with maximum speed.

The track for short track competitions has an oval shape, and is often marked in hockey areas, the minimum dimensions of which are 60×30 m (ice thickness is 40 mm, temperature is about -6 ° C). The length of this track is 111.12 m, the width of the straight part is 7 m, the distance from the marking block indicating the top of the turn to the rim is 4 m.


In addition to the standard track on the ice platform, 4 more tracks are shifted by 1 and 2 meters in both directions from it. The start and finish are marked with colored lines, the width of which is 2 cm, at an angle of 90º to the straight part of the track, the length of the starting line being equal to the width of the straight part of the track, and the finishing line – by 1.5 meters more.

The line marking the beginning of the race shows 2 cm points in diameter, marking the starting positions of the contestants. The distance between the points is 1.3 m, the first of them is applied 50 cm from the inside of the track.

Similar points are present throughout the distance, and indicate the location of markers made of dense, inflexible black rubber (natural or synthetic). To mark the starting line, additional markers are used, which are removed immediately after the start of the race.

The sides of the platform are protected by fence mats, whose thickness is 20.32 cm, the length is not less than 2.13 m, and the height is equal to the height of the sides of the ice platform. Mats are made of foam rubber, and consist of 2 parts – more dense (thickness – 7.62 cm, density – 32.04 kg / m3) and softer (thickness – 12.7 cm, density – 22.43 kg / m3 ). Above, they are covered with a dense vinyl fabric, resistant to cuts and abrasion. The mats are interconnected and attached to the rink.

Short track

This kind of speed skating appeared in Canada at the beginning of the last century (the first short track competitions were held in North America in 1906), but was accepted under the auspices of the International Skating Union only in 1967. And even after that, international short track competitions were not held until 1976.

The Technical Committee for this sport, uniting 30 national federations, was established in 1975, and the first World Championship was held in 1981. In 1988, the short track was an indicative discipline at the XV Olympic Games in Calgary (Canada), and among the Olympic sports included since 1992.

In the program of the Olympic Games, since 1994 (the XVII Olympiad, Lillehammer (Norway)) – 6 kinds of competitions on the short track:
• personal superiority in running for 500 m (4.4 laps) and 1000 m (9 laps ) in men and women (usually 4 sportsmen participate);
• 3,000 m relay race (27 laps) for women and 5,000 m (45 laps) for men (5 athletes can be declared).

Also during competitions for this sport there may be competitions in the 1500 m race (13.5 laps). The races last three days (in exceptional cases – two days) and pass through the Olympic system: first qualifying races (hits).

Participants in the first qualifying round (32 persons) are distributed according to the rating of the athletes: the first place, the first race, the second – the second and so on, until the last race.

After filling the first places, this procedure continues in the opposite direction, i.e. First, the athlete is determined who will take the second place in the last race, then – the one who will be in second place in the penultimate race, etc.

Third places in races are distributed from left to right, like the first, fourth places – from right to left, like the second. Places for athletes who are not included in the rating list are distributed according to the results of the draw.

The results demonstrated by the athletes during these races are entered in the main control card. In the next round of competitions (1/16 finals) are the athletes who took the hits of the 1st and 2nd places, as well as some participants who took 3rd place and showed the best time. By the same principle participants are selected 1/8, ¼, ½ finals and the race at the final distance.

The movement of the athletes is counter-clockwise. The break between the races is not less than 20 minutes for each participant, in addition, athletes have the opportunity to warm up 45 minutes before the start of the competition, which ends no later than 15 minutes before the start of the hits, to enable the ice field to be prepared for the competition. In the relay participate 8 teams of 4 people in each. 2 teams-winners go to the finals.

Short track – movement on the ice field on metal skates.

This is indeed so. But there is also a kind of short track in which athletes compete in roller-skating. Competitions of this kind are held on sites with a special coating. It should also be mentioned that due to the fact that videos are chosen in this sport, athletes have to use special techniques, which differ radically from the methods in the usual short track, during the race. This kind of sport at the moment has not gained much popularity.

The short track came from skating.

Professionals claim that the short track is not a derivative of speed skating, but the next stage of development, behind which is a great future. If only because only a small hockey field is enough to practice this discipline, it means that athletes will not need to go to specialized stadiums to big cities for training.

Short track

The competition for the short track is extremely time-consuming.

Yes, contestants will have to demonstrate their skills several times in a row to achieve victory. However, according to the athletes themselves, the loads of this kind for them are a common thing, since the training of the short track is about the same rhythm, except that the breaks between the races are somewhat shorter than in the competitions.


Less-track training has a negative impact on the health of the athlete.

Unfortunately, this is so. Very steep turns, which athletes pass, relying on special markers, create a large load on the spinal column, resulting in pain in the lower back and back. Therefore, all who chose this sport, try to make maximum efforts to strengthen the muscles of the back, giving a lot of time warm-up before the speeches and hitch after the end of the races.

In a short track, the easiest way to succeed is for people who are engaged in professional speed skating.

The ability of skaters to feel confident on the ice in a short track is very useful. However, it should be noted that sometimes some parameters that are ideal for skating (for example, high growth and strong muscles) in the short track can be an obstacle to achieving high achievements. After all, in this sport is important dexterity and speed of movement, because most of the winners – people of low stature and rather slender. But in the skaters of the short track athletes go quite often, and achieve considerable success.

Athletes in a short track grind skates very often to move faster.

Yes, it is true that in this sport it is necessary to sharpen the skates after each race, because all athletes have a machine and a stone for sharpening blades, as well as a smaller stone for removing the burrs remaining after sharpening. But do not think that the sharpness of the blade affects speed. Extremely sharp skates (the thickness of the blade – 1,1 – 1,2 mm), having a length of 40-46 cm, a special shape (moving and slightly curved skids) allow the athletes in the short track to pass very steep turns.However, sometimes in competitions of this kind, athletes participate and on simple skates.

To sharpen the skate blades in a short track, any machine and grindstone will do.

This is not quite true. Machines in which the blades are inserted and firmly fixed with the help of nuts, different manufacturers have different, and sometimes only suitable for working with blades made at the same firm. Therefore, intending to purchase a machine, be sure to ask the seller if it is suitable for sharpening blades of different manufacturers. The same rule should be applied, choosing a machine for bending the blades. Choosing stones for sharpening blades, it should be remembered that a really high-quality product is produced in the US, but Dutch stones, though cheaper, are most often either quickly worn out or crumbled.

Skate blades should be placed in the center of the sole of shoes.

No, in the short track, the blades are slightly off to the left. This is done so that during sharp turns the athlete’s shoes do not touch the ice.

To win the short track, you need to develop the maximum possible speed.

This is not entirely true, since the main task of an athlete is not to set a world record (although this is possible), but first to cross the finish line. And for this it is necessary to think over the strategy of behavior, taking into account its capabilities and taking into account the tactics of rivals. After all, sometimes an athlete almost the entire distance is not very impressive speed, only at the end of laying out completely. This skater will finish first, although his average result will be worse than that of an opponent moving with a constant higher speed.

Short track

Helmets in athletes are the same and necessarily yellow.

Wrong opinion. Each of the competitors has his own helmet (made of special durable plastic), and not always yellow. And the effect of monotony is obtained due to the yellow fabric covers with well-distinguishable black numbers, which are assigned to each athlete as a result of the draw. These cases are worn over the helmet. The only general requirement is the absence of protrusions, sharp corners or elongated fairings on the helmet. It should be noted that the skater, who earned the greatest number of final points at the end of the race, receives from the organizers of competitions a helmet of contrasting color (most often red). And during the relay, each team gets a cover of helmets (or T-shirts) of a certain color, so that it’s easier to follow the movement of players of a particular team across the field.

In the short track, the main thing is equipment and equipment.

Good skates, appropriate clothing and protective equipment, as well as the ability to apply certain skills in this sport, of course, are necessary. However, according to professionals, the most important in the short track is the tactics and strategy of the future race.

The outfit in the short track is somewhat different from the habitual dress of skaters.

Yes, short-track skates require special skates with special-shaped blades, hard leather gloves with special shapes poured from epoxy glue, worn on the fingers. In addition, athletes necessarily wear solid helmets, knee pads, elbow pads, chin and neck protectors, the main task of which is to protect the competitors from injuries. Some of the athletes use glasses with colored lenses to protect their eyes from ice chips, wind and ice shine.

After each run, the ice is poured with water to level it.

This is indeed so. And the site is flooded with hot water, which falls deep into the cracks, parallel melting the ice, and after freezing forms an ideally flat surface. Most often this operation is performed manually.

After passing the race, athletes who score the same amount of points are declared leaders.

No, there is only one leader in the race.If two skaters scored the same amount of final points, the leader is declared to be an athlete with a greater number of scoring points.

In a short track, the relay can be transmitted anywhere in the distance.

This is indeed so. Moreover – the rules do not prohibit the push of one of the participants of the relay teammate to give him more speed.

To competitions on a short track children are supposed from 11 years.

No, the first (younger) age group includes girls and boys aged 9-11.

The athletes in the short track are divided into age groups, and compete only with the representatives of their group.

This is true when it comes to international competitions. However, in some cases, in competitions held by the Federation of the short track of any country, the athletes of the younger age group may compete with the representatives of the senior groups in accordance with the decision of the Short Track Federation, agreed with the coaching board, if so authorized by the doctor.

There should be at least 10-12 people in the judging panel of the short track.

In fact, the judiciary board for this sport is much more extensive. In addition to the Chief Judge and his deputies (from 2 to 4), it includes a senior judge at the finish and judges at the finish (from 4 to 6), referees photofinish (1-2 people), a starter and his assistant, counters of circles (from 1 up to 4), senior timekeepers and timekeepers (from 4 to 6), informants judges (1-2), judges at participants (by the number of participants). But there is also a judge in the hitbox, who follows the equipment of the athletes, the judge who records the time of the circles, the chief secretary and his deputy, the secretaries (usually 3-4 people), the commandant and the doctor of the competitions.

The Chief Justice has the right to cancel the erroneous, in his opinion, decisions of the remaining judges.

Yes, it is. However, to change the decision of the starter judge regarding the start of the athletes and the judge at the finish on the order of arrival of competitors to the finish line, the chief referee is not in the right.

The shot from the starting pistol sounds only once – at the beginning of the race.

No, in the short track during the relay, the pistol is used twice – at the start and after the judge counting the circles, notifies the starter that the athletes have run through the last 3 laps. Also, a shot (or whistle) can signal the return of athletes after a false start to restart.

Short track

There must be 4 judges at the finish, each of which registers the arrival of one athlete.

Yes, there are actually four judges at the finish. The first of them registers the arrival of 1 and 2 athletes, the second – 2 and 3, the third – 3 and 4, the fourth – 4 and 5 (if the participants 4-5). If there are more than 5 participants, the starter or his assistant joins the finishers at the finish, whose task is to record the arrival of the 6th athlete.

One of the judges is obliged to count the circles passed by the athletes during the race.

It is the responsibility of the circle counter to monitor the leader in the race. It is in accordance with the results of the leading athlete on the scoreboard changes readings, and not indicated the number of already passed circles, and the number of circles that remained to go to the finish.

On the ice, except for the participants of the race, there is only the Chief Justice and two of his deputies.

No, in addition to the members of the jury, 2 to 4 people can be on the ice ground, whose duties include maintenance of equipment (installation of knocked-down markers, shifting of the track by moving markings, etc.).

The deputies of the main referee are placed with him in the center of the ice rink during the competition.

There are only two deputy chief judges on the ice field, two more are placed outside the ice – at the beginning or end of each turn.

A runner can personally apply to the Chief Judge if he considers that there has been a violation of the rules in relation to him.

No, appeals of this kind are conducted exclusively through the representative of the team, or through the coach (or captain) of the team.

If a contestant has been replaced (for example, in case of illness), he will not be able to take part in other races.

Yes, however, in the relay race the athlete will still be able to participate if the state of health allows.

Overtaking in the short track is not prohibited.

This is indeed so. And in this sport, you can overtake rivals on any part of the track, and the responsibility for a possible collision is borne by the overtaking athlete. The one who has been overtaken has the right to continue the match, but must move closer to the side so as not to interfere with other participants.

If the athlete is overtaken twice – he is eliminated from the competition.

Yes, according to the decision of the chief referee, the athlete must stop the race, since he is in a disadvantageous position. The exception is the final race, during which the above rule does not apply.

Participants in the race are disqualified if they have a physical effect on the rivals.

This is indeed so. In addition, the chief referee may disqualify athletes, who, in his opinion, twice (during the first and repeated run) evaded the struggle for the championship in the race (“No contest” is announced). Also, the athlete may be disqualified in case of a repeated false start or refusal to participate in the official events of the competition.

When the athlete is disqualified – all points earned by him are canceled.

No, a disqualified athlete loses points only for the race in which he was disqualified and forfeits the right to participate in the next round. Points scored before disqualification remain unchanged, although they are not included in the final final classification (since the results of an athlete who for any reason did not start at one of the all-round ranges are not included in the final classification).

Short track

The last 2 laps in the relay must necessarily run the same participant.

Indeed, although the number of laps in each athlete’s relay race is chosen arbitrarily by team members, the same last person must overcome the last two laps. Another athlete, he can be replaced only if, during the last leg of the route, the relay will fall.

Soviet athletes began participating in competitions on the short track since 1985.

This is not quite true. In the World Winter Universiade, which took place in the city of Belluno (Italy) in February 1985, the USSR team actually took part, but it was the short track competitions with which classical distances were replaced that the athletes watched from the stands, because they were completely unprepared for this format of the competition. But already in April 1986 the USSR team took part in the World Short Track Championships, held in Chamonix (France). The best result of Soviet athletes in these competitions is the 23rd place. And after 2 years at the European Cup-88, the same shorttrekovikov took 2nd and 3rd places at 500m and 3000m and 4th place in the relay race, thereby surprising the international community.

Two athletes from the same team should not participate in one race.

This is indeed so. In this case, the organizers of the competition try to transfer the second athlete to another race. If a suitable race is not found – the athlete can remain in the group of the initial race.

There can not be more than 4 participants in one race.

In the case of a distance of 400 to 1000 m, no more than 4 athletes should actually go to the ice. But at a distance of 1500 m, 6 people can compete. In the final races at a distance of 1500 m there are 4 people (juniors or juniors – 6 people), at a distance of 3000 m or 5000 m (relay race) – 8 people.



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