The Paralympic long jump champion is to work with the IAAF on a rule change proposal to allow athletes using prostheses to compete in a future IAAF World Championships
Markus Rehm is no longer seeking selection for the Rio Olympic Games but is to work with the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) on a rule change proposal to allow athletes using prostheses to compete in a future IAAF World Championships, the sport’s world governing body has said.
The Paralympic long jump champion had expressed his hope of competing at both the Olympics and Paralympics this summer but following an IAAF Council meeting last month it was stated that Rehm has so far failed to prove that his prosthetic does not give him a “competitive advantage”.
A working group had been established by the IAAF earlier this year to look into the generic use of prostheses in competition. The objective of the working group was to agree a recommendation for the approval of the IAAF Council regarding IAAF Rule 144.3(d) which governs that “athletes using a mechanical aid cannot be allowed to compete at major championships unless they can establish that the use of an aid would not provide them with an overall competitive advantage over an athlete not using such an aid”.
On Friday (July 1) Rehm met with IAAF general secretary Jean Gracia, who is chair of the working group.
“The discussion was extremely constructive and positive with Markus Rehm agreeing to join the IAAF working group, which will next meet after the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games this September, in which Rehm intends to compete,” read an IAAF statement.
“As a member of the working group, Rehm and the IAAF will work together on a rule change proposal to allow athletes using prostheses to compete in a future IAAF World Championships, the aim being London in 2017.”
The statement added in part: “Rehm … confirmed he will not be seeking selection for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.”
Germany’s Rehm, a single-leg amputee who competes wearing a carbon fibre blade prosthesis following a wakeboarding accident when he was a teenager, improved his own world T44 long jump record to 8.40m when winning his third successive title at the IPC Athletics World Championships in Doha last October.
That mark achieved by Rehm, who jumps off his blade, is just one centimetre off the leap Britain’s Greg Rutherford recorded to win the IAAF world title in Beijing last August, while the distance would have been enough for Olympic gold in London in 2012.