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Amputee Is German Long Jump Champion

timothy posted about 3 months ago | from the we-are-all-augmented dept.

Medicine 175

hweimer (709734) writes "German long jumper Markus Rehm has written sports history yesterday, becoming the first disabled athlete to win a national able-bodied championship. His jump to 8.24 meters put him on the 9th place of the current season rankings and make him egligible to compete in the upcoming European championships, further sparking the debate whether his prosthetic leg provides him with an unfair advantage."

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Awesome (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543271)

I don't know if there's an unfair advantage, but if not for sports, then at the very least it's good news for normal life.

No, no unfair advantage at all... (4, Insightful)

BitZtream (692029) | about 3 months ago | (#47543277)

From TFA

Rehm runs and jumps with a specially designed blade that is 15 inches longer than his other leg

I can't imagine why anyone would accuses him of 'cheating' ...

The device is like a spring, so it stores energy as well as having extra length and mechanical advantage, and better still its far stronger and requires much more force to break.

I'm sorry he lost his leg, but there is no why this is 'fair' by any sense of the word.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543331)

Agreed. I applaud his resilience and toughness to come back from the loss of a limb, but he is competing with non-human appendages.
Not fair.

Nudity (0)

tepples (727027) | about 3 months ago | (#47543385)

Shoes are "non-human appendages". Clothes are "non-human appendages". Should people have to compete in bare feet and naked?

Re:Nudity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543427)

Shoes are available to anyone.

At this level, the kind of shoe you wear is simply preference. There is no clearly superior option, theat other runners could not opt into if they wanted.

Body integrity identity disorder (0)

tepples (727027) | about 3 months ago | (#47543483)

One thing that keeps runners from "opting into" this prosthetic is that mainstream surgeons are forbidden to perform elective amputations. Nearly two millennia ago, Jesus of Nazareth gave his two cents about how to treat people with body integrity identity disorder [wikipedia.org] : "And if your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into Gehenna."--Mark 9:45, NIV.

Re:Body integrity identity disorder (1, Insightful)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 3 months ago | (#47543507)

Allegedly gave his two cents. I see people even today saying "this is not a legal advice, hire a lawyer" like all the time. I'm pretty sure it applies to ancient prose even more.

Re:Body integrity identity disorder (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543525)

What are you talking about?

You could easily design a similar advantagous device and attach it to your perfectly fine leg. Yet that is not allowed (for good reasons I'd say).

Re: Body integrity identity disorder (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543973)

Got a historical source on that fairy tale quote? Or just biblethumping on Slashdot and expecting people to play nice with your ignorant sensibilities?

Either way, you're a naive moron.

Re:Body integrity identity disorder (4, Insightful)

alvinrod (889928) | about 3 months ago | (#47544205)

That is quite possibly the worst interpretation of scripture that I've seen in a while. Even people who don't buy into it are quite capable of realizing that what you're suggesting the passage means has nothing to do with what it was intended to mean.

I'm not sure if this is just ignorance, a failed attempt to be funny, or a troll. If it's the latter, bravo to you as it appears as though it's worked rather well.

Re:Body integrity identity disorder (4, Insightful)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 3 months ago | (#47544395)

One thing that keeps runners from "opting into" this prosthetic is that mainstream surgeons are forbidden to perform elective amputations.

I'd think that the main thing that keeps runners from "opting into" prosthetics is that most people don't want their fucking legs cut off.

Re:Nudity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544303)

So, I can use a ladder for high jump? Ladders are available to anyone.

Re:Nudity (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543437)

Shoes are "non-human appendages". Clothes are "non-human appendages". Should people have to compete in bare feet and naked?

Yes. That's how the first Olympics worked.

But they'd better allow women this time or I'm not watching.

Re:Nudity (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 3 months ago | (#47543585)

Saudi Arabia is to modern Olympics what the US et al. would be to Ancient Olympics...

Re:Nudity (4, Informative)

Kjella (173770) | about 3 months ago | (#47543587)

If there's a distinct non-human advantage to them, yes. Most sports are extremely tightly regulated, mainly I've looked at the Nordic sports and for example the jump suit used in ski jumping is highly regulated. Likewise in ice skating, they proved some years ago a "Donald Duck" like suit would improve skate times. It was banned. The support biathlon athletes can get while shooting is likewise regulated. The rules themselves are arbitrary, as long as they're equal for everyone. Why it is "three strikes, you're out" in baseball? Couldn't it be one strike? Five strikes? Sure it could, but the game says three. And then you compete under the rules of the game. Everything else is the other way around, they're allowed to wear baseball caps because everyone can wear one and it doesn't favor anyone in particular. You can't call ut unaided because bicyclists obviously outpace runners, pole vaulters outjump high jumpers and so on but the aid is considered neutral. Anything that isn't you ban.

Re:Nudity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543691)

That would be the original olympic style, but nowadays everyone is a prude.

Re:Nudity (1)

angel'o'sphere (80593) | about 3 months ago | (#47544063)

In the original Olympics they competed naked for millennia ...

Re:Nudity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544161)

Shoes are "non-human appendages". Clothes are "non-human appendages". Should people have to compete in bare feet and naked?

You forgot about the advantage where some have naturally longer legs than others.

Re:Nudity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544371)

Or the advantage of shorter legs that allow for faster steps and acceleration

Re:Nudity (1)

Intron (870560) | about 3 months ago | (#47544179)

Shoes are "non-human appendages". Clothes are "non-human appendages". Should people have to compete in bare feet and naked?

Another reason to keep women's volleyball in the Olympics.

Re:Nudity (1)

tomhath (637240) | about 3 months ago | (#47544271)

Should people have to compete in bare feet and naked?

Only in Beach Volleyball.

But as far as track and field sports, if one competitor can use springs or blades then why can't all of them?

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

Smallpond (221300) | about 3 months ago | (#47543341)

From TFA

Rehm runs and jumps with a specially designed blade that is 15 inches longer than his other leg

I can't imagine why anyone would accuses him of 'cheating' ...

The device is like a spring, so it stores energy as well as having extra length and mechanical advantage, and better still its far stronger and requires much more force to break.

I'm sorry he lost his leg, but there is no why this is 'fair' by any sense of the word.

It would be like wearing $500 shoes in a marathon when other runners are barefoot. Or like using a wind tunnel to train your bobsled team!

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

Gr8Apes (679165) | about 3 months ago | (#47543389)

From TFA

Rehm runs and jumps with a specially designed blade that is 15 inches longer than his other leg

I can't imagine why anyone would accuses him of 'cheating' ...

The device is like a spring, so it stores energy as well as having extra length and mechanical advantage, and better still its far stronger and requires much more force to break.

I'm sorry he lost his leg, but there is no why this is 'fair' by any sense of the word.

It would be like wearing $500 shoes in a marathon when other runners are barefoot. Or like using a wind tunnel to train your bobsled team!

Not quite, all the other runners can wear $500 shoes too. The wind tunnel is used to design better bobsleds, not train in. Unless all competitors can utilize similar "appendages", yes, it's not fair.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

M1FCJ (586251) | about 3 months ago | (#47544557)

Not all runners can -afford- the $500 shoes. A lot of third world country athletes train in abject provety.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

M1FCJ (586251) | about 3 months ago | (#47544567)

proverty? POVERTY, dummkopf.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543403)

Sure, if those 500$ shoes are rollerblades.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543991)

Not really, shoes versus no shoes only really matters in shorter runs. You'd never win the 100m dash without wearing shoes, but it's definitely possible to win a marathon without them. The reason being that the initial acceleration is much higher for the dash than for the marathon, and a fraction of a second at the beginning of a marathon doesn't typically dictate the final result.

No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543355)

Specifically, not having lost a leg, can I put a spring on my leg and claim a championship?

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (3, Informative)

tommeke100 (755660) | about 3 months ago | (#47543419)

I can't speak for long jump, but in high jump your shoes are definately regulated.
you're not allowed for example to have shoes that have a sole thicker than a certain amount.
I just looked it up and apparently it's the same for long jump shoes.
So yes, I don't think springs or a blade qualify as valid shoes in this case (especially if the blade is 18 inches longer than your other leg!).

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

CheezburgerBrown . (3417019) | about 3 months ago | (#47544059)

But muh Americans with Disabilities Act!

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

M1FCJ (586251) | about 3 months ago | (#47544579)

If a spring was helping him, IMHO, he wouldn't be the 9th, but the first. I am sure his kit has been tested and found fit according to the regulations.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543407)

The concept of fairness is kind of iffy as it stands, no ?
People aren't made equal from the start, so sports aren't fair by definition.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

Megol (3135005) | about 3 months ago | (#47543923)

So true!

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544015)

That's ridiculous.

Fairness is about the rules and the playingfield. Some people are going to be better suited to it than other people are. I'm more likely to win a marathon than I am the 100m dash. Doesn't mean that the competitions are unfair, it just means that I have muscles that are more capable for endurance contests.

OTOH, if you're a pudgy bastard that hates sports, that's a perfectly reasonable argument to rationalize why you suck at sports. For the rest of us, having rules that are applied evenly and consistently is fair enough. It sucks that some people aren't physically capable of competing at the olympics, but if he gets in wtih that assistance, I don't see why the rest of us shouldn't get assistence to work around things like asthma and being fat.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

EmperorArthur (1113223) | about 3 months ago | (#47543491)

I'm sorry he lost his leg, but there is no why this is 'fair' by any sense of the word.

It's Deus Ex: Human Revolution coming to real life. Next thing you know it'll be someone with some other disability going ahead. Perhaps a footballer with a prosthetic that helps him catch and hold the ball. The tipping point (as it is in the game) is when you can get near natural control of a prosthetic by connecting it directly to a persons nerves or brain.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

Intron (870560) | about 3 months ago | (#47544077)

Too late. One third of MLB pitchers have now had surgery to allow them to continue pitching at a high level. But steroids will still get you banned. Seems sort of inconsistent to me.

http://bleacherreport.com/arti... [bleacherreport.com]

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

beh (4759) | about 3 months ago | (#47543695)

Hmm - I could partially understand the extra strength and mechanical advantage in the Pistorius case - I can't quite see it with Markus Rehm.

Pistorius had BOTH legs amputated, so you can potentially improve on both sides. Rehm had ONE leg amputated - adding extra length doesn't make any sense one one side only. Similarly, I would guess it would make it very difficult to run evenly, if the prosthetic leg doesn't about match the other one in length, in "bounce" (in the step), ...

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543845)

You'd have a point if he was a runner.
He is not.

He is a jumper and he takes off using his prosthetic.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (3, Funny)

maird (699535) | about 3 months ago | (#47543871)

Rehm might go faster than naturally legged racers in the 100m circle.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544243)

C'mon mods. This if funny as hell.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (2)

fellip_nectar (777092) | about 3 months ago | (#47544159)

Long jumpers jump from the same leg every time - in Markus Rehm's case, his take-off leg just happens to be the prosthetic one.

Plus (and this is the biggie with regards to all prosthetic appendages IHMO) - he has one leg which effectively cannot get injured. He's less likely to suffer any training setbacks during his build-up to major events. If his prosthetic leg snaps a week before the worlds, he can simply replace it. With a real leg, there'd be no chance for it to heal in time. Hell, he doesn't even have to deal with blisters on one of his feet.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (2)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 3 months ago | (#47544443)

adding extra length doesn't make any sense one one side only

I think they mean it's longer because it's got the usual curving blade shape. He still stands the same height on it.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

ATMAvatar (648864) | about 3 months ago | (#47543707)

I can't imagine why anyone would accuses him of 'cheating' ...

The device is like a spring, so it stores energy as well as having extra length and mechanical advantage, and better still its far stronger and requires much more force to break.

I'm sorry he lost his leg, but there is no why this is 'fair' by any sense of the word.

Oh, and I suppose Pitch-O-Mat 5000 was just a modified howitzer?

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543719)

So if Tink Tink is Pistorius, then this guy is Boing Boing?

No, no unfair advantage at all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543811)

IF you are not willing to have you legs replaced by giant springs, then you are not serious about competing at the highest levels of this important endeavor

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (2)

sjames (1099) | about 3 months ago | (#47543839)

The human leg provides a spring effect as well. He is missing all of the springiness of his achilles tendon. He is also missing all of the contribution of his calf muscles to the jump. It really is quite hard to calculate with any precision if his prosthetic is giving him an advantage or if it is simply replacing some of what he has lost.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 3 months ago | (#47544069)

The human leg is rather ridged as its bone, it certainly doesn't flex and rebound in a way that stores usable energy of any amount worth mentioning. Watching this device in action clearly does. The achilles tendon doesn't stretch several inches when stressed, lest it snap.

No one he's competing against has an additional 15 inches of leg formed into a compound lever of high tech polymers and metal.

Take a look at the picture, its pretty clear the machine has an advantage over a normal leg in this particular case.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544045)

I wonder if it makes that Six Million Dollar Man sound [youtube.com] when he jumps...

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544143)

If the other people feel that he has 'unfair' advantage - nothing is keeping them from cutting off their own legs.

Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 3 months ago | (#47544465)

The device is like a spring, so it stores energy

So... a bit like a tendon?

as well as having extra length and mechanical advantage

Does it actually have a mechnical advantage?

and better still its far stronger and requires much more force to break.

Again, does it? Have you tried to break someone's leg, versus breaking their blade? Of course, one definite advantage is that if it does break, you just put on a new one, rather than spending months in rehabilitation.

But it's not like running with a blade doesn't have any disadvantages. Not having any ankle muscles is presumably one such.

Yes its an unfair advantage (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543319)

In addition to the springy unbreakableness, his prosthetic leg is also quite a bit lighter than a normal one.

he should be competing in the cyborg olympics.

Re: Yes its an unfair advantage (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543533)

Athletes in the cyborg Olympics will do more impressive stuff than unenhanced athletes. Thus ends sports as we know it. (And about time, too.)

if eric garner had been able to jump this far (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543357)

He wouldn't be dead. Don't blame the police for doing their job. Everyone knows cigarettes kill. Untaxed cigarettes kill faster. The Third Reiche, - you can't kill an idea.

Don't care (0, Flamebait)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 3 months ago | (#47543361)

I don't care. Sports is (are?) stupid. They are, by default, exclusionary. The entire point of sports is to be sexist, elitist and show others that you're better than they are. Now, low and behold, a group that has bee excluded for thousands of years from the hobby has found a way to use their disability as an advantage. Call me a jerk for not feeling sympathy for the rich, steroid ladened, kids whose parents gave them every advantage in the world suddenly feel disadvantaged.

Re:Don't care (3, Interesting)

TrollstonButterbeans (2914995) | about 3 months ago | (#47543619)

That isn't true. Sports don't exist to be elitist and show others that you're better than they are.

That is the definition of "competition".

You find competition in everything whether you are talking elite coders, spelling bee champions, among sales people and amongst companies.

Some people said Steve Jobs was "elitist".

Competition brings out those characteristics. Sports is a way that it is done where the arena is physical prowess.

Re:Don't care (1)

ganjadude (952775) | about 3 months ago | (#47543709)

really? you are excluded from "running in a line, then jumping" really??? you clearly have no clue about sports at all. perhaps you are the stereotypical nerd who got picked on all the time, but not all of us are, and to many of us sports are a good leisure activity

Re:Don't care (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543885)

really? you are excluded from "running in a line, then jumping" really???

Really? TFA is regarding someone who lost a leg and thus is excluded from "running in a line, then jumping" without the use of a prosthetic, and about people being bitchy about how it isn't fair, and saying that amputees should still be excluded, and you find it hard to believe it possible to be excluded from "running in a line, then jumping"? Really???

Re:Don't care (1)

ganjadude (952775) | about 3 months ago | (#47543981)

i was responding the the above poster and his disdain for sports, im not talking about the person in the article whom i dont believe should be in the competition with the others due to his unfair advantage.

Re:Don't care (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544649)

For athletics and US "football", all you need is muscles. No brains are required. Any so-called-athlete I have ever met was as thick as a railway sleeper. No symphaty to the hormone-overdosed idiots crying foul when someone they would beat for fun wins a tournament.

Re:Don't care (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544033)

He's not excluded, there's the paralympics for people like that. Simply put, how do you judge whether somebody in a wheelchair has an advantage over somebody who isn't? Or how about amputees, I'm not sure anybody really established whether or not there was a real advantage to Pistorius when it came to his races.

What's more, the Olympics are incredibly hard to get into with or without a disability.

Re:Don't care (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544119)

He's not excluded, there's the paralympics for people like that. Simply put, how do you judge whether somebody in a wheelchair has an advantage over somebody who isn't? Or how about amputees, I'm not sure anybody really established whether or not there was a real advantage to Pistorius when it came to his races.

What's more, the Olympics are incredibly hard to get into with or without a disability.

I just beat up a handicapped guy. He was parked in a regular space.

Re:Don't care (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543729)

This is life, everything is elitist and exclusionary, work, exams, school, evolution, compete or die, and it appears you're gonna die

It's a game. Grow up. (1)

sjbe (173966) | about 3 months ago | (#47543779)

I don't care. Sports is (are?) stupid.

Why? Because you don't play them? I'm sure whatever hobbies you prefer are clearly superior... [/sarcasm]

They are, by default, exclusionary.

Pretty much anyone can play sports so they are by definition not exclusionary. You might not be the best at a given sport but absent an insurmountable physical deficit there is nothing prohibiting your from participation. We even have special competitions like the Special Olympics for those who need a little extra help to participate.

Call me a jerk for not feeling sympathy for the rich, steroid ladened, kids whose parents gave them every advantage in the world suddenly feel disadvantaged.

Ok, you're a jerk. "Rich, steroid ladened kids whose parents give them every advantage"? Seriously? You sound like a pathetic bitter little person with an inferiority complex who needs to denigrate others to make yourself feel superior. Sports are nothing more than games. You don't have to like sports nor do you have to participate but it takes a real asshole to think that because others enjoy a game that those who participate are somehow bad people. The entire point of a game is to have people compete under the same rules as everyone else. Sometimes technology creates advantages that break the game balance and we have to consider whether or not to allow that technology. Sometimes we do, sometimes we don't. Having that discussion does not make you one a jerk but people who criticize the need for the discussion (like you) are jerks.

Re:Don't care (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544355)

Poor baby. Have mommy bring you some more cookies in the basement, and this time make sure she opens up the Oreos first for you. Clearly, the world of Oreos is exclusionary to those whose fingers are so glued to the keyboard they can't open them up to get the tasty cream filling.

We need different divisions (2)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about 3 months ago | (#47543391)

Just like car racing, we need different divisions for athletics. One for stock, unmodified humans like us. No drugs, etc. And the "top fuel" division for prosthetics, hormones, steroids, etc. My interest in several sports (bicycling, weightlifting) has already died because of rampant drug abuse. Heck, if you don't do drugs then you won't even qualify for televised events. It's sort of like F1 racing, it's not really a competition between humans, it's a competition between scientists.

Ever since the Olympics went professional, it's been boring. Of course, once these two divisions have been established, the athletes will still cheat in the stock division. Because there's money involved. Even the Korean Starcraft players cheat for the same reason.

Re:We need different divisions (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543655)

Being Asian should be considered cheating when it comes to any computer related competition, it's not fair, at all. Also, hooking up with an Asian chick the night before should be cheating. Every time I have my gaming performance the next day is increased a good 9000 percent.

I want to see the best (1)

sjbe (173966) | about 3 months ago | (#47543795)

Ever since the Olympics went professional, it's been boring.

Maybe to you. Personally I disagree. I want to see the best of the best competing on the most level playing field we can devise. Whether they get paid for it or not is irrelevant to me.

Re:I want to see the best (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about 3 months ago | (#47544025)

When there's money in it, people will cheat. That's what causes all the drug problems.

Re:We need different divisions (1)

zAPPzAPP (1207370) | about 3 months ago | (#47543887)

Hey, easy now!
Scientists are humans too.

Re:We need different divisions (1)

Intron (870560) | about 3 months ago | (#47544163)

Now define "unmodified humans". People who have had appendectomies are lighter than the rest, so that's an unfair mod, right? People who have had polio vaccine are much stronger than people who have had polio, so that's clearly an unfair advantage.

Re:We need different divisions (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about 3 months ago | (#47544185)

Oh, gimme a freakin' break. Appendectomy, really? Polio victims are crippled and won't pass the qualifying rounds. Or did you just come up with ridiculous examples for some unclear end?

Watching the video (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543459)

It appears he launches from the springy metal fake foot, which is definitely helping his distance. This is pretty much a no brainer to anybody who can see.

Re:Watching the video (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544671)

Really? You got all of that from a video? Nothing about the testing the prostethic leg went under, how stiff it was and how much power it could store? You think these things don't get tested?

You must be a undiscovered genius. Get out of your basement and go, amaze the world.

unfair advantage? (0)

gTsiros (205624) | about 3 months ago | (#47543469)

those claiming so are free to remove any extraneous limbs of their own

Help me find a surgeon (1)

tepples (727027) | about 3 months ago | (#47543505)

Which surgeons are willing to do so? I don't think surgeons are even willing to remove dead-weight paralyzed limbs or limbs that the brain refuses to recognize [wikipedia.org] if the limbs otherwise appear physically healthy.

Re:Help me find a surgeon (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543639)

I don't think surgeons are even willing to remove dead-weight paralyzed limbs

Yes, they are.

Think of a person who has one non-functioning leg, and has therefore little other choice than to use a wheelchair, as with crutches he would simply drag his leg around, creating a considerable burden (think pendulum kind of swinging motions, possibly even kicking the crutch next to the non-functioning leg, causing the user to fall).

Without such a leg he could move about much more easily, and if part of the upper leg could be saved he could even have a chance of getting a prothesis that he can control, maybe even resulting in walking without crutches.

So yes, doctors/surgeons will consider removal of non-functioning limbs.

Re:unfair advantage? (1)

citizenr (871508) | about 3 months ago | (#47543791)

you are laughing now, but just wait few years

Different equipment, different categories (3, Insightful)

pmontra (738736) | about 3 months ago | (#47543493)

Eventually prosthetics will get so good that they'll let athletes achieve much better results than any unmodified human. When it happens everybody will see that the only way to go is different categories for different equipments. We are bound by compassion and politically correctness until we get to that point, so how to address this problem now? Call me hard hearted but I'd still apply my reasoning and enforce different categories right now even if we are in doubt of who's getting an advantage at the moment.

Re:Different equipment, different categories (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544351)

Inb4 Mech Warrior olympycs!

Fair for All (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543539)

If it's fair for a disabled person to take part in sport events for the able-bodied then it's fair for an able-bodied person to take part in sport events for the disabled. Or is logic not a strong point for the people advocating "fairness"?

Re:Fair for All (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543657)

But competing in the Special Olympics is like arguing on the internet...even if you win you are still retarded.

Re: Fair for All (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543969)

The year 2000 called. It wants its lame joke back. Kthxbai

Re: Fair for All (1)

michelcolman (1208008) | about 3 months ago | (#47544433)

Did you warn them about 9/11?

The major question would be .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543553)

... Would it be a prosthesis that would be in default use in day-to-day life ?

The able-bodied, "normal" athlete has to do with what he uses in every day life, so why the exception for a "differently-abled" person ?

Also, the blades where-and-are especially designed for a sport like this (where leg-power is the most important). As such there is only one word for this: Unfair advantage.

So why not even the playfield, and allow everybody, differently-abled or not, to use such blades ?

It would ofcourse mean the death of the sport of human running as we know it, but hey, that would ofcourse be a small price to pay.

Well, only ONE of his leg is prosthetic (1)

thieh (3654731) | about 3 months ago | (#47543565)

I would guess advantages can only be properly quantified if both his legs are prosthetics because when you have one real leg the capabilities of other leg has to be adjusted to match the real one.

Re:Well, only ONE of his leg is prosthetic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543611)

If both his legs were prosthetic, he should just ad 3 extra metres to each side and 'jump' by making one big step.

Rediculous idea, but at which point exactly does it start? There does not seem to be rule?

Ya think? (1)

amightywind (691887) | about 3 months ago | (#47543573)

The mofo has friggin' pogo sticks for legs. He shouldn't compete with the able bodied unless he does it on his stumps.

and make him egligible (4, Funny)

zephvark (1812804) | about 3 months ago | (#47543613)

Egg lig ibble? Really? Egg lig ibble?

I understand that the title "Slashdot Editor" is intended largely for comedic effect... I hope. Perhaps we could just get the place renamed to Slapstick.com ...oh, that's taken. How about Slapdash.com, that seems to be up for sale.

He takes off using the prosthetic leg... (4, Informative)

HockeyPuck (141947) | about 3 months ago | (#47543683)

If you watch the jump carefully you'll notice that he takes off (launches) from the prosthetic leg. I wouldn't be complaining too much if he took off from his real leg.

Look at the kangaroo, a kangaroo has a very long Achilles tendon. This allows them to be very efficient in jumping buy storing up so much energy when it stretches out like a rubber band enabling them to jump very far with very little effort. Humans on the other hand, have very short achilles tendons and therefore do not have this mechanical advantage.

When landing, the impact force and weight of the this guy is absorbed by active elastic stretch of the prosthetic. When he jumps, the weight is accelerated by a recoil force due to elastic recoil of the the prosthetic. This recoil force is much greater than that of what our our achilles tendon plus the active contraction of our calf muscle can do.

This guy has the equivilant of a 15inch long achilles tendon. As if you look at the video when he actually makes the jump, you'll see the prosthetic "foot" is bent 90 degrees from it's normal angle. The human achilles tendon is a) not 15in long and b) doesn't bend 90 degrees.

As a side note, I would assume there is no "fatigue" or decrease in "springiness" of the prosthetic between his first, second and third jumps. He could always show up to an event with a brand new prosthetic.

He's cheating.

Re:He takes off using the prosthetic leg... (1)

maird (699535) | about 3 months ago | (#47544005)

The prosthetic must have two selectable operations so that his run can be guaranteed to be so balanced and he also does well to ensure that he always launches the jump from the prosthetic. At the end of the day, if there has to be a new competitive division for those with a prosthetic then his most important goal is to avoid it being a lower athletic standard than the ones he divides from so good luck to him in trying to avoid it being called paralympics or equivalent.

Keep an eye on him (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543817)

He'll probably turn out to be a murderous thug, like that other south african cripple. Let's not get all dewy-eyed about those freaks: crippled in the body == crippled in the mind. Deep down he harbours resentment towards the world of the Normal People, and soon this resentment will turn to hatred. Being German he'll probably do much worse than that south african cripple whose name I can't remember. He'll probably open a concentration camp or something, or maybe do a scheisse video of his murders.

of course it could give an advantage.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543823)

any body modification could... example: doping is not the only reason lance armstrong was an awesome cyclist. ride one of those racing bikes with the ball-busting seats for a couple hours and then consider how much more pleasant it might be after an orchiectomy.

Only 8 meters? (1)

jasonditz (597385) | about 3 months ago | (#47543829)

I would think if you're allowed to attach any mechanical device you want where your legs would be I'd think someone would come up with a catapult that would just hurl him the length of a football field. No one's touching that record.

Re:Only 8 meters? (1)

linearz69 (3473163) | about 3 months ago | (#47544361)

The Germans have never heard of Steve Austin.

Watch the video (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543861)

He appears to be launching himself with the prosthetic. At first I thought, "maybe it's the lack of leg weight", and then I realized he was using it to give him a mechanical advantage.

Grats to him but that is clearly cheating (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47543947)

After watching the video you can even see him use the "spring" leg when he makes the final push of the jump. He's clearly using it to his advantage.

I for one (1)

stonedead (2571785) | about 3 months ago | (#47544381)

Welcome our Cyborg overlords to the long jump games in soviet russia where the jump longs for you. MUST SLEEP NOW> Good bye.

Prove it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47544401)

If he is really that good then he should be able to jump that far when taking off on his real leg instead of his spring loaded leg.

What about Lasik? (2)

michael_cain (66650) | about 3 months ago | (#47544413)

Athletes regularly have laser surgery to improve their vision to 20/10 or better. Baseball hitters in particular claim that it gives them an advantage in terms of being able to see the spin on the ball sooner. Should that be allowed?
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