How much higher? How much faster?

— Limits to human sporting performance are not yet in sight —

IELTS reading sample 2

Q1 Since the early years of the twentieth century, when the International Athletic Federation began keeping records, there has been a steady improvement in how fast athletes run, how high they jump, and how far they are able to hurl massive objects, themselves included, through space. Q3 For the so-called power events –that require a relatively brief, explosive release of energy, like the 100-metre sprint and the long jump-times and distances have improved ten to twenty percent. In the endurance events the results have been more dramatic. At the 1908 Olympics, John Hayes of the U.S. team ran to marathon in a time of 2:55:18. In 1999, Morocco’s Khalid Khannouchi set a new world record of 2:05:42, almost thirty percent faster.

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