Pole vault: What it's like when the pole snaps

New Zealand pole vaulter Olivia McTaggart had quite the scare just weeks out from this year's Commonwealth Games.

The 18-year-old was training in Auckland when her pole snapped as she vaulted.

"It hit on my hand somehow... The shock from the force is so intense that it can do anything to your hand really," she says.

"[My hand] was sort of popping up a bit... I was really worried it was dislocated or something."

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Luckily, the training venue had onsite doctors to help.

"It was just a bit of ligament damage, so that's all healed up now."

That's just in time for the Commonwealth Games. McTaggart is competing at the event for the first time on the Gold Coast this week.

"I'm so excited to be here... It's really surreal because it's been a dream since I was really young."

After almost 10 years in gymnastics, she transitioned to pole vault three-and-a-half years ago because of back problems.

"The doctor said it probably wouldn't be wise to keep going with gymnastics. It was really hard for me at the time," she says.

McTaggart is the sister of Kiwi weightlifter Cameron McTaggart who's also part of the Games team.