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Factors affecting height achieved:-

1.Height of center of gravity at take off:-

        Affected by - Physique, Take off position

2.Vertical take off velocity

3.Height over the bar:-

        Affected by - body position at peak, body movements over the bar






The Long Jump consists of 4 main parts:-


2.Take off




The approach needs to be fast, controlled, and consistent. From personal experience I know you can lose up to 1m through an inconsistent approach. The beginning of the approach is routine but the final 5 strides are where you judgment comes in to adjust the stride pattern appropriately. At take off the object is to convert horizontal velocity into vertical velocity, ideally the take off angle should be about 40 degrees but the human body is incapable of this and only around 20, and 25 degrees is achieved by world class men and women respectively. To assist this transfer of velocities athletes allow their hips to sink slightly in the last few strides. You can use a variety of movements in the air, known as the hang, sail, and hitch kick, but all are intended to control the natural forward rotation created at take off. (Some athletes decided not to fight the rotation but go with it and do a somersault in the air, the distances were not affected but do to the danger the rules forbid it - do not try this yourself!!) The landing provides the final opportunity to gain a few extra centimeters by extending the length of the flight through the raising of the legs. 





minimize loss of speed





Factors affecting height achieved:-

1.Height of center of gravity (CoG) at take off:-

        Affected by - Physique, Take off position

2.Height gained from work on pole:-

        Affected by - Speed at take off, strain energy at take off, mechanical energy losses, work done on pole, body position at release

3.Height achieved after pole release:-

        Affected by - Body position relative to the pole, effectiveness of pull/push, vertical velocity leaving the pole

4.Height over the bar:-

        Affected by - body velocity at peak, body position at peak, body movements over the bar


Maximizing all four factors:-

1.We are all more or less stuck with our physique, and increases in muscle will have a minimal affect on your CoG. For young athletes the CoG height will increases as they grow.

The take off position can however vary enormously from athlete to athlete. At the point of take off the lead leg should be high and bent, while the take off leg, and both arms are fully extended. 

2.The speed at take off should be the maximum that the athlete can achieve whilst still in control of the pole and take off.

The stiffer the pole, the more energy it can store but the harder it is to bend. Strain energy is put into the pole by bending it, and to generate a bend the athlete must push out the lower arm, resisting the urge for the body to 'overtake' the pole. The stiffness of a pole is related to body weight, but if the athlete is fast and strong enough to use a pole rated above their body weight then they will gain more height after leaving the pole. This should only be attempted by experienced vaulters.

Forces acting between the pole and box and forces acting within the pole convert mechanical into non-mechanical energy (e.g. heat, sound). These energy losses cannot be reduced by the vaulter, but different makes of poles will lose differing amounts of energy.

During the swing the lead leg should be kept tucked up and the take off leg should swing through to meet the lead leg in a tucked position. The legs should come together and be ready to extend into an inverted position as the pole begins to straighten. The body and pole should extend together such that as the pole reaches vertical the body is extended and in line with the pole. If the vaulter is in the right position at the right time then the pull/push action should be an easy, natural progression in the vault.

During the pull/push the body should twist to face the bar and at release from the pole the body should be in a one handed, hand stand position.

3.If the body is not vertical at release from the pole then maximum benefit cannot be made from the bodies vertical velocity. A strong pull/push will add to the vertical velocity gained from the extension of the pole (recovery of strain energy). Top international vaulters can do a handstand press up with such power that they can get up to about 30cm clearance from the ground, this is the type of power needed immediately prior to release from the pole.

4.Ideally the vaulter does not want a large gap between themselves and the bar, as this is wasted height. As in the High Jump the athletes CoG should pass under the bar. The pike over the bar should be delayed as long as possible to maximize height achieved.


What happens when you don't push the pole away in PV - 1.4 MB

Somebody unsuccessfully attempting to long jump over a swimming pool - 0.6 MB

The dangers of running with your head down - 0.7 MB