Special Education

Two Blind Pole Vaulters Compete at State Championships

By Bryan Toporek — May 13, 2013 1 min read

You think pole vaulting is difficult enough as is? Try doing it while being legally blind.

Two high school student-athletes did exactly that this past weekend, each competing in her respective state’s championship event.

Despite being unable to see the bar she’d be jumping over, sophomore Charlotte Brown cleared three heights at the Texas track and field state championships on Saturday. Brown cleared the first three heights (9 feet, 6 inches; 10 feet; and 10 feet, 6 inches) “easily,” according to the Associated Press, but couldn’t clear the 11-foot height in three attempts. Coming into the day, Brown’s personal best was 11 feet, 6 inches.

Brown has 20/400 vision in her right eye and “only a pinhole field of vision in her left eye,” the

A version of this news article first appeared in the Schooled in Sports blog.