Pole Vault Planting Box Padding

National Federation of State High School Associations 
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To:                          State Association Executive Directors and Track and Field Administrators 
From:                    Jim Tenopir/Becky Oakes 
Subject:               Pole Vault Planting Box Padding 
Date:                     April 4, 2013 

The Track and Field Rules Committee recommended and the NFHS Board of Directors approved an immediate rule change to Track and Field Rule 7-5-24 pertaining to padding for the pole vault planting box. Rule 7-5-24 now permits the use of planting box padding that meets the new ASTM Specification Standard. 
Rule 7-5-24…The planting box shall not contain any foreign materials except planting box padding. Such padding, if used, shall meet the applicable ASTM Specification Standard, and can be incorporated into the design of the planting box or can be a padding addition to an existing planting box. NOTE: Padding meeting the ASTM Standard may be used immediately, subject to rejection or conditional approval by state association action. 
Rationale: For the purpose of minimizing risk of injury to a pole vaulter, allow planting box padding that meets the applicable ASTM Specification Standard. 
The Track and Field Rules Committee recommended the rule change for the purpose of risk minimization with release of the ASTM standard and new product availability. In addition, with the NCAA requiring such planting box padding by December 1, 2013, there is a growing number of facilities utilizing the padding this outdoor season. Thus, high schools may encounter padding meeting the new standard. Unless determined otherwise by the respective state association, it is now permissible to use pole vault planting box padding meeting the ASTM standard. 
All current rules requirements for padding are still in effect. For additional information regarding NFHS pole vault equipment requirements, please refer to the 2013 NFHS Track and Field Rules, 7-5. 

About the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS)

The NFHS, based in Indianapolis, Indiana, is the national leadership organization for high school sports and fine arts activities. Since 1920, the NFHS has led the development of education-based interscholastic sports and fine arts activities that help students succeed in their lives. The NFHS sets direction for the future by building awareness and support, improving the participation experience, establishing consistent standards and Rules for competition, and helping those who oversee high school sports and activities. The NFHS writes playing Rules for 17 sports for boys and girls at the high school level. Through its 50 member state associations and the District of Columbia, the NFHS reaches more than 19,000 high schools and 11 million participants in high school activity programs, including more than 7.5 million in high school sports. As the recognized national authority on interscholastic activity programs, the NFHS conducts national meetings; sanctions interstate events; produces publications for high school coaches, officials and athletic directors; sponsors professional organizations for high school coaches, officials, spirit coaches, speech and debate coaches and music adjudicators; serves as the national source for interscholastic coach training; and serves as a national information resource of interscholastic athletics and activities. For more information, visit the NFHS Web site at www.nfhs.org.