As I mentioned in yesterday's post, I'm going to be featuring a variety of female athletes as part of my countdown to the publication of Long-armed Ludy and the First Women's Olympics (Charlesbridge Publishing, Aug. 2017).
So what jumps out at me tonight as I look at my screen? The 3rd annual JavFest -- a three-day festival of javelin competitions for all ages that just finished up in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania.
Apparently, it's a "stateside version of the great Pihtipudas Javelin Carnival in Finland." Who knew??
Winning the girls high school division was Dana Baker of Olathe, Kansas, with a throw of 169-2. Women's collegiate/open champion was Ariana Ince of Houston, Texas, with a meet record of 201-4.
Here's a very cool video from a few months ago that features Dana and her abilities. Apparently, she picked up the sport on a whim to stay in shape for volleyball.
So how does this all related to Ludy Godbold? Well, Ludy was a javelin thrower, too.
But at the Women's Olympics in Paris in 1922, Ludy threw the javelin with BOTH arms.
First, Ludy threw with her RIGHT arm. Then she threw with her LEFT arm. (Yikes, can you imagine throwing a javelin with your non-dominant arm???) Anyway, the two distances were added together.
This approach to field events (including the shot put) was discontinued several decades ago. But I'm curious. Any ambidextrous throwers out there??