Field Events: Inch Back as the High Jump Bar Rises

Field Events: Inch Back as the High Jump Bar Rises

Dick Moss, Editor, PE

As the bar rises in a high jump competition, you may notice your jumpers getting closer to the bar at takeoff and knocking it down on their way up.

This usually occurs because they're taking a faster runup in order to clear the extra height. Combine a faster runup with the adrenaline that's a byproduct of a higher bar, and you often get longer strides and a starting mark that's no longer appropriate.

Guidelines for a Faster Runup
One solution to this problem is to move the starting mark farther from the bar. A good rule of thumb is to move the mark back two inches for every two inches of increased  bar height.

This guideline has been used by Ed Fern and his jumpers with great success for many years, (Ed Fern is the author of Ed Fern's Flight School).

1. Ed Fern, Ed Fern's Flight School, Tafnews Press, 1990.
2. Ed Jacoby, Winning Jumps and Pole Vault, Human Kinetics, 2009.

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© 2010, Physical Education,

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