High Jump

By: Marisa Schaldach

History

The first ever recorded high jump event was during the 19th century in Scotland (High Jump History, 1). Even though this was the first recorded high jump, this sport was practiced unofficially before then. The first technique in high jump is much different from what you see now. The first jump was a jump that kept your body straight up and down, while you kick your inside leg up and over the bar followed by your outside leg, kind of like scissors (High Jump History, 1). The point of this jump is to stay on your feet at all times. This jump is difficult to complete when you reach high heights, so a new jump was created. This jump was more of roll which is how it got it's name "the western roll". This jump has you jumping off of one foot, and going over the bar with your torso rotated downwards (High Jump History, 4). This enabled jumpers to get even higher! Then a man named Dick Fosbury invented the jump that we see now in which you take off from one foot, drive your inside knee up, rotate your body and go over the bar on your back (High Jump History, 6). This jump is now the most common jumped used because you can get the highest possible jump this way. Dick Fosbury once said, "I adapted an antiquated style and modernized it to something that was efficient. I didn't know anyone else in the world would be able to use it and I never imagined it would revolutionize the event" (1).

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When doing the Fosbury Flop, you want your legs to wrap around the bar like in this picture. The more you tilt your head and arch your back, the less chance you have of hitting the bar. Pictured above is United States Olympic high jumper Jesse Williams.

Records

The Men's high jump record is currently held by Javier Sotomayor Of Cuba (High Jump World Records, 4). Men usually jump higher then women in this event. Sotomayor jumped 2.45 meters, or 8 feet and 0.46 inches in 1993 (High Jump World Records, 4). In other countries, high jump is recorded in meters instead of feet. The women's high jump world record is held by Stefka Kostadinova of Bulgaria at a height of 2.08 meters, or 6 feet 10 1/4 inches (Rosenbaum, 2).

Equipment

For high jumping, you will need a special high jump pit, two standards to hold the bar up, and a high jumping bar. The big pit is just like a mattress, and it can come in two parts or three.

Terms

Fosbury Flop: The most common type of high jumping.

Western Roll: A roll over the bar.

Scissor Kick: Kicking your legs over the bar while keeping your body upright.

Standards: The two metal poles that hold up the high jump bar.

Pit: The big mattress you land on. This mattress is usually one or two pieces.

Take Off Point: The point at which you plant your foot before you jump.

Approach: Steps leading up to the jump.

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This is a step by step diagram on how to complete the western roll.

Rules of High Jump

  • You may only take off from one foot.
  • You are given three attempts at each height, after the third miss, you are disqualified.
  • If you choose not to jump, your body may not cross the plane, or touch the equipment.
  • If you hit the bar and it stays on, it is still a complete jump.
  • You must complete your jump within the allotted time frame.
  • Once the bar has been moved up, it may not be brought back down.

Current US Olympic High Jumpers

Women:

Amy Acuff - From: Austin Texas - PR: 6'7"

Brigetta Barrett - From: Tucson Arizona - PR: 6'8"

Inika McPherson- From: Oakland California - PR: 6'4"

Deirdre Mai- From: Mountain View California- PR: 6'3 1/4"


Men:

Jamie Nieto- From: Chula Vista California - PR: 7'8"

Jesse Williams- From: Eugene Oregon - PR: 7'9 1/4"

Erik Kynard- From: Manhattan Kansas- PR: 7'7 3/4"

Dusty Jones- From: Lincoln Nebraska- PR: 7' 8 3/7"

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Olympic High Jumper Amy Acuff.

Works Cited

3d Model Jump - High Jump Bar and Mat by KJPargeterImages. N.d. Photograph. 3d Model Jump. Www.turbosquid.com. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.turbosquid.com/3d-models/3d-model-jump/670838>.


Amy Acuf»Photostream. N.d. Photograph. Zimbio. Getty Images, 29 June 2012. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.zimbio.com/photos/Amy Acuf/2012 Olympic Track Field Team Trials Day 9/HTclzhsisni>.


Google Images. N.d. Photograph. Google Images. 02 Sept. 2011. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.google.com/imgres?hl=en>.


Google Images. N.d. Photograph. Google Images. Www.amazon.com. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.google.com/imgres?um=1>.


Mira, Nic. "High Jump History." Greatest Sporting Nation. Greatestsportingnation.com, 2011. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.greatestsportingnation.com/content/high-jump-history>.

Mira, Nic. "High Jump History." Greatest Sporting Nation. Greatestsportingnation.com, 2011. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.greatestsportingnation.com/content/high-jump-history>.


Rosenbaum, Mike. "Women's World Records." About.com Track & Field. Ask.com, 2012. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://trackandfield.about.com/od/worldrecords/tp/Women-s-world-records.02.htm>.


TeamSkyline: Sporting Goods - Track and Field - High Jump Standards. N.d. Photograph. TeamSkyline: Sporting Goods - Track and Field - High Jump Standards. Www.teamskyline.com. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.teamskyline.com/index.cfm/fusemethod/cdd2_sub/catid/18/category/Track and Field/subcatid/399/sub_category/High Jump Standards/>.


The IAAF World Championships Daegu 2011: Beautiful and Precise Event, the High Jump. N.d. Photograph. The IAAF World Championships Daegu 2011: Beautiful and Precise Event, the High Jump. 17 June 2011. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://daegu2011.blogspot.com/2011/06/beautiful-and-precise-event-high-jump.html>.