In track and field sprints, the sport’s governing body, the IAAF, has a rule that if the athlete moves within 0.1 seconds after the gun has fired the athlete has false-started. This figure is based on tests that show the human brain cannot hear and process the information from the start sound in under 0.10 seconds.
This rule is only applied at high-level meets where fully automated force or motion sensor devices are built into the starting blocks that are tied via computer with the starter’s gun. In the vast majority of lower-level meets, false starts are determined visually by the officials.
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