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Age Adjusted time

11/03/2011

So at Woodstock Runner’s Handicap we estimate our time, and for the the 5Km Time trial we still nominate our time but w also are ranked based on the “age adjusted time” or “Masters Age grading.”

The Masters Age grading i first hear from Brendan when he was talking about Dot and Kerry on their performances in the World Masters Games. So what is Age Adjusted time actually?

In US durin the bloom of road running 20 years ago, the concept of special age divisions for older runners was developed. Because the biological fact that men and women slow down and lose strength with age, separating the older, or masters runner to be judged separate from the open runners made sense.

Nowadays most races would have ten year age categories and more progressive races further divided these categories into five-year groups. This made things much fairer for the older competitors. They only had to compete against those about their own age.

Through research the first age grading tables were developed by the World Association of Veteran Athletes, the world governing body for masters track and field, long distance running and race walking. Those first tables were published in 1989. In 1994, the tables were updated with new data, and they will continue to be updated, probably on a five-year basis.

Two ways Age Grade table is used

The tables can be used in two ways –
1. by using an age grading standard to determine an athletes’ performance level percentage (PLP).
2. To re-adjust an athlete’s time to that of an open athlete by using an age factor.  –

An example in the Age Grading Table, a 53 year old woman runner has finished a 10K in 45:18. The 10K factor for her is .8545. By multiplying 45:18 (or 2718 seconds) by .8545 we reach 38:43 as her age graded time.  To determine her performance level percentage you would take her standard which is 35:01 and divide 35:01 (2101 seconds) by 45:18 to get her PLP of 77.3%.

Without this age standards it is hard pressed to see these athletes had the superior performance. With them we can see that the 42 year old woman hurdler comes out on top.

Surprise at the results, younger athletes might not appreciate the type of scoring as this is not to their advantage, sorry :P.  You’ll be surprised, that you might be the quieckes finisher in a race, yet based on calculation someone older than you would have a higher PLP and rank 1st.

Use it to track your performances

You still do not see the use of this scoring? As a master, or if you are aged 30 years and above, you can use the tables to track your own performances. With age adjusting you can compare the best effort at age 45 to their best at 50 and 55, etc.

Example , a 43 year old beginner ran a 43:15 in a 10K, which age grades to a 40:26 for 74 PLP. at 53 years old a slight improvement at 42:37. However, with age adjustment, that 42:37 becomes a 36:25 for an 82 PLP, a marked improvement that would not otherwise be apparent.

Age adjusted Tables

Age Grading Calculator

http://www.runnersworld.com/cda/agegradingcalculator/0,7977,s6-238-277-415-0-0-0-0,00.html

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One Comment leave one →
  1. 02/06/2011 1:06 am

    Thanks for the explanation

    You are welcome.

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