Olympic Gold Medalist attends Badger State Games

Dick Fosbury revolutionaized the high jump form

The Badger State Games Track and Field meet returned to UW-La Crosse’s Veterans Memorial Sports Complex this weekend.

If participants did well in the events at the Badger State Games, they could actually qualify for the State Games of America held every other year.

“The State Games of America will be held next year, in 2017 in August in Grand Rapids, Michigan. So, if you’re actually one of the top 3 medalists this year or next year at the Badger State Games Track and Field, you will qualify for the State Games of America,” said Jeremiah Burish, wtith the La Crosse County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau.

Nearly 400 competitors, ranging in age from six to 90, showed up for this year’s Badger State Games.

Dick Fosbury, winner of the 1968 Olympics high jump gold medal, also attended the games. He was the one who revolutionized the high jump form but it didn’t catch on very quickly.

“It took almost 20 years before every athlete was using my technique so it was adopted slowly and a lot of people challenged if it was a valid technique. But after I won in Mexico, that convinced a lot of people and young jumpers,” said Fosbury.

Fosbury continues to hold camps across the country to teach coaches his jumping technique.