Is your track compliant with new exchange zone rules?

Unless your track was installed and painted in 2019, the answer to that question is most likely “no.”

But don’t fret. Your track is fine, and it can be used exactly as it sits with the current markings, it could just use an update to fully comply. The NFHS changed the exchange zone distance in early 2019, following the lead of the NCAA, for relay legs less than 400 meters. Effectively, it applies to the 4×100 and 4×200 events, although there are some exotic relays run at meets with a 300-meter leg.

Under the old rule, the runner would start 10 meters behind the legal handoff, or exchange zone. That 10 meters before the exchange zone is calls a fly zone or acceleration zone.

The new rule allows for a hand off anywhere in the 30 meters between where the runner takes off and the end of the exchange zone. Effectively, the fly zone is eliminated – runners will begin in the same spot, they can just receive the hand off sooner.

The exchange zones at Danbury High School are 30 meters long, in accordance to the new rules adopted by the NFHS in 2019

Currently, tracks have two large triangles marking the hand off area and a smaller one 10 meters in front. Tracks striped to the new rules will have two larger triangles (or whatever marking the school chooses) 30 meters apart. Since there are already marks 30 meters apart on older tracks, there is no issue using them with the new rules, but the areas won’t be marked as clearly as they can be.

Want to get your track in compliance? ATT Sports can help. Reach out today for a quote to restripe your track, and we will get you up to date.