Complete Track and Field

Set Up Your High Jump Approach

Does anyone know HOW to set up the curved approach???    The modern high jump approach makes the jumper run in a distinctive shape along the track surface toward the pit, akin to the letter “J”.  By the end of this, you should know how to set up a base line for all your high jumpers’ approach. Please note that this set up lies to the LEFT of the pit for jumpers with left footed takeoffs, and to the RIGHT of the pit for jumpers with right footed takeoffs.

1.)   Measure 2’ out from the near standard, and then measure 2’ to the left of that mark.

RJ1a-Measure2feetRJ1b-Measure2feet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.)   Place an “X” at this point.

RJ2-PlaceanX

 

 

 

 

 

 

3.)   Next, place a mark 6” from the “X” that is diagonal and towards the middle of the runway.

RJ3-PlaceaMark

 

 

 

 

 

4.)   Measure a line 18’ that begins at the near standard and ends outside the far standard.

RJ4-MeasureaLine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RJ4b-MeasureaLine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5.)   The second mark is placed on a line 30’ away from the first checkpoint.  Make sure the line is perpendicular to and outside the crossbar.

RJ5a-SecondMark

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RJ5b-SecondMark

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coaching Resource: Workout Planning & Progressions for Combo Sprinters/Jumpers

6.)   From the start of the 30’ checkpoint, grab your tape measure and extend it to the 6” mark you established earlier.

RJ6-FromtheStart

 

 

 

 

 

 

7.)   Anchor the tape measure that starts at the top of the approach and use the other end like a compass to map out a semi-circle.  Once the circle starts making its way towards the middle of the runway, stop.

RJ7a-AnchortheTape

 

 

 

 

RJ7b-AnchortheTape

 

 

 

 

RJ7c-AnchortheTape

 

 

 

 

RJ7d-AnchortheTape

 

 

 

 

RJ7e-AnchortheTape

 

 

 

 

RJ7f-AnchortheTape

 

 

 

 

RJ7g-AnchortheTape

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8.)   Create a straight line that is tangent to the semi-circle to insure that straight portion of the run is perpendicular to the bar.

RJ8-CreateStraightLine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There you have it!  The optimum radius is dependent upon the speed of the jumper, strength, curve running mechanics and posture.

Related Article: Drill Progressions for Jumpers (Early Season)

Just remember, moving your first checkmark toward the standard decreases the radius of the curve, while moving the line away from the standard increases the curve’s radius.  Curved forces increase with velocity; meaning faster jumpers generally employ greater radii.  Shortening the radius creates tighter curves and may compromise proper running mechanics.  Have fun!

RJ9-ThereYouHaveIt

 

 

 

 

 

 

And if you have questions about how to set this up, post them below and I’ll help you get it worked out!

Follow me on Twitter (@reubenajones) and Instagram (@jump4jones) for questions, comments and other training insights.

 


About Reuben Jones

Reuben JonesCoach at Columbia University (NY). Also coached the Big South Conference Outdoor Record Holder in the men’s high jump (7’4.5″), and women’s 200m dash (23.27), school record in women’s indoor high jump (5′ 7.75). His male and female triple jumpers have improved their performances by an average of one foot...
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  • john

    Individual high jump marks are to confusing. I need a full diagram of the area with all the individual measurements within that area. This would be more helpful rather than individual pictures with measurements. Thanks.