Jumping Over Rather Than “Hurdling”

Posted In: Hurdles

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        Shane Stadtmueller on #18160

        I am currently dealing with a big problem I’m having with hurdles – it seems like I’m jumping up over then rather than “striding” low across them like an actual hurdler. I think maybe its the fact that I am predominantly a good jumper, so it seems like a natural reflect to jump but at the same time I don’t feel like I’m as far above the hurdle as I actually am (like 6-8″ at least sometimes).

        I’m 5’11”, 180 lbs, with relatively long legs but not disproportionately so – not exactly sure how to describe it any better.

        I’m not sure whether it’s simply a confidence issue to get closer to the hurdle, a flexibility issue with my hips that because my trail leg can’t go high enough I compensate by leaping, or a combination of the two.

        I can attack the hurdles with all the confidence in the world but sometimes that makes me jump higher over it.

        Any suggestions? I know a video would help tremendously, I’ll try to get one up.

        Thanks in advance.

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        underdog_19 on #114509

        I don’t know what level hurdler you are but if you’re “jumping” over hurdles there are two things I would look at.

        1. Is your lead leg being led with the knee and your foot tucked under the knee? If you’re leading from the hip, like kicking a football, the tendency is to pull back on the body, losing forward leaning, and causing you to possibly go higher over the hurdle.

        2. Being a good jumper, the tendency is to drop both arms before jumping. Are you doing that while attacking the hurdle?

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        Matt Gardner on #114510

        sprinting takeoffs, lead leg drills (with foot under knee) are good for function of driving knee at the hurdle and a penetrating takeoff vs over (go low height to work on lower flights and 5 step work here is good. Also check takeoff distances and touchdown distance. Don’t know your level, but if you aren’t taking off at least your height away from it there’s nothing to do, but go up. I’ve put my cell phone down on the track and even laid down on the track in front of hurdles as sometimes tennis ball markers just aren’t enough psychologically to get people to cut, put the foot down under them and extend into the hurdle (remember it has to be a takeoff leg before it becomes a trail leg). Upload a vid and we can offer more specific recs.

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        Shane Stadtmueller on #114513

        I don’t know what level hurdler you are but if you’re “jumping” over hurdles there are two things I would look at.

        1. Is your lead leg being led with the knee and your foot tucked under the knee? If you’re leading from the hip, like kicking a football, the tendency is to pull back on the body, losing forward leaning, and causing you to possibly go higher over the hurdle.

        2. Being a good jumper, the tendency is to drop both arms before jumping. Are you doing that while attacking the hurdle?

        I’m a college hurdler so the hurdles are at 42″. I am getting my lead leg driven up and extended over the hurdles and my trail leg to the side and then snapping back in. It’s when I’m directly over the hurdle, with my lead leg out and my trail leg coming over I’m very high above the top of the hurdle. I do have trouble controlling my arms (they tend to flop around to the sides instead of being tight).

        sprinting takeoffs, lead leg drills (with foot under knee) are good for function of driving knee at the hurdle and a penetrating takeoff vs over (go low height to work on lower flights and 5 step work here is good. Also check takeoff distances and touchdown distance. Don’t know your level, but if you aren’t taking off at least your height away from it there’s nothing to do, but go up. I’ve put my cell phone down on the track and even laid down on the track in front of hurdles as sometimes tennis ball markers just aren’t enough psychologically to get people to cut, put the foot down under them and extend into the hurdle (remember it has to be a takeoff leg before it becomes a trail leg). Upload a vid and we can offer more specific recs.

        Those are some good ideas, thanks Matt! I do believe what you describe as the lead leg drill with the foot under the knee is something we already do, or at least is similar. My coach sets up 5 hurdles about 2 strides (from hip to hip) apart and has us drive our knees up with our feet very close to the top while kicking our trail leg heel to out butts. Then it’s about a 1-step between each hurdle.

        I will try to get some vids tonight at practice, at least of me hitting the first one or two hurdles.

        Thanks!

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        Inactive
        Anonymous on #114528

        As simple as it sounds, be tall. I have seen long jumpers doing hurdles and mimic the penultimate step at the hurdle. Don’t let you hips sink, focus on being tall and on your toes. Step over the hurdle, don’t jump.

        Cheers.

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        Shane Stadtmueller on #114529

        Here are a couple videos I got from tonight’s practice. I’m sorry they aren’t the best quality.

        A few thing I notice:
        – My arm need to be tighter with better form, not flailing like they do sometimes
        – Trail leg needs to snap down
        – I still feel like I’m too high above the hurdle

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        Matt Gardner on #114530

        Only looked once as it’s bed time, but:

        First hurdle you’re putting your foot down way in front of you like high jump vs underneath you (Takeoff may be a little close as well). Nice high hips and run the takeoff are what you want vs you just slamming that takeoff foot into the ground. Increasing your sprint speed will help and make getting to spots easier as you look like you feel pressed to make spacing. Arms a mess and need lots of lower speed simplified work (I like 5 step work or leads or trails done as 5 step work as you need tons of reps to get coordinated doing real hurdling not just walkovers). After 1st hurdle you’re bounding a bit as you lose a lot of speed at hurdle one which sets up a boundy and jumpy rhythm. What’s the spacing here?

        Work tech in 5 step, 3 step at spacings you can comfortably sprint and be a faster more powerful sprinter and then work out to more full spacing vs reaching/bounding.

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        Matt Gardner on #114531

        also need to do work over lower hurdles don’t be afraid to hurdle at 33 36 and 39

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        ex400 on #114534

        You are swinging your leg up at the hurdle instead of driving your knee at it to initiate the action. You are hurdling flat-footed. This is death for hurdlers, because it sends you up rather than forward into the hurdle.

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        Derrick Brito on #114536

        There is a horde of things for you to work on as a hurdler, but for the problem in your original post I would suggest two things. First, your lead arm rockets to the moon when you hurdle. If you can focus on throwing it forward rather than up I think it will help. Second, put a cone at your desired takeoff distance for the first hurdle. Video yourself to see if you are taking off at that distance and adjust accordingly. Should be in the neighborhood of 6-7 feet.

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        Matt Norquist on #114579

        Arms are a symptom, vs. a cause. IMO – your issue stems from your set up to first hurdle. You are not pushing upright soon enough (different in HH vs. sprints) and it haunts you the whole race. Push upright by step 4-6.

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        Matt Gardner on #114582

        Everyone is pointing to key things. He looks like he needs to get a lot faster and learn how to hurdle (everything he is a track and field athlete). Simple cues aren’t going to clean up all that. Good programs can address speed/power, technique, rhythm, etc.. and that’s how you fix that (a whole program). A kid who looks like he’s struggling to make hurdle one and between hurdles is bounding and reaching isn’t going to clean up his whole race by just getting tall earlier.

        Curious what’s you 100m or 200m time?

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        Matt Norquist on #114583

        Everyone is pointing to key things. He looks like he needs to get a lot faster and learn how to hurdle (everything he is a track and field athlete). Simple cues aren’t going to clean up all that. Good programs can address speed/power, technique, rhythm, etc.. and that’s how you fix that (a whole program). A kid who looks like he’s struggling to make hurdle one and between hurdles is bounding and reaching isn’t going to clean up his whole race by just getting tall earlier.

        Curious what’s you 100m or 200m time?

        That’s partly wrong…

        A 12.00 100m guy can get to 15.low 110H (very good for a mid level multi-guy) by doing a couple things right. Posture into first hurdle sets the rhythm for the whole race.

        Yes, overall program and getting faster helps. But as long as one is not miserably slow, 8 steps to H1 is not a challenge, and moving between hurdles is about posture and angle of attack as much as anything. Anyone faster than mid-11s 100m is having to cut steps to 3 step.

        Keep hips high=run fast hurdle times relative to your overall speed.

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        Matt Gardner on #114584

        Where is partly wrong? I said a complete prescription (best you can do under constraints) gets you complete solutions. If you think that’s wrong you’re nuts. Kid wants to know how to hurdle better. Posture, takeoffs, arm actions, spacing, rhythms and first and foremost you have to be a sprinter to be ahurdler. I’m not saying you have to run sub 11 to 3 step. I’ve coached high school kids that were 11 mid to high and 14.5 state finalists (off of one to two hurdle practices a week). Cues are great, drills are great, they are tools, if you want to fix things you have to fix things. Takeoff hurdle one is first big bomb, but if you’re not working on the ability to make the blocks sing more, airplane arms etc.. what kind of program are you running. Do you just line up full spacing and height and get taller. I’ve coached some good hurdlers and changes need to be made with repetition in skill appropriate environ,ents. Those spacings and those heights aren’t where he needs to be working in for those changes. I see jumpers I almost always go the Winkler approach of just one low hurdle until they figure that out (single hurlde run over it over and over again until they learn posture and takeoff basics (sticks and bricks, pizzza boxes, scissor hurdles or low hurdles 27-30inch you get the idea. Visual feedback, auditory whatever they need and make change. Then scale up into 5 step work (great to work hurdle action and arms) and 3 step work with comfortable spacings and heights to challange them to execute at speed, but hurdle well low first. You don’t need a million drills or a million different days just fix stuff in environments that are appropriate and then scale up when the skill is there and stable.

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        gaspar on #114585

        I would just say in hurdles you should run them, not jump them, this means you cannot go over hurdle by “jumping” off from the whole foot, this means don’t run over your heel. Running over heel generates the jump you see on the hurdle. By staying high and running over the forefoot, like you should normally sprint, doesn’t give you this big peak. When everything is ok, the highest point of you COG is a bit before the hurdle and from there on it’s supposed to drop to the run level, because you should lose less time on going over the hurdles and gain speed between the hurdles. In my opinion this is the key point, you can do all the good exercises mastering the technique over lower velocities, but if you cannot transfer it to the real running, then you’re still jumping over the hurdles.

      • Carl Valle
        Participant
        Carl Valle on #114586

        Nice to see everyone’s opinions.

        Speed development helps as many technique changes happen from adaptations of speed rather than cueing verbally. I think grass hurdling over 36 for high school athletes is a great option.

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        Matt Norquist on #114588

        Where is partly wrong? I said a complete prescription (best you can do under constraints) gets you complete solutions. If you think that’s wrong you’re nuts. Kid wants to know how to hurdle better. Posture, takeoffs, arm actions, spacing, rhythms and first and foremost you have to be a sprinter to be ahurdler. I’m not saying you have to run sub 11 to 3 step. I’ve coached high school kids that were 11 mid to high and 14.5 state finalists (off of one to two hurdle practices a week). Cues are great, drills are great, they are tools, if you want to fix things you have to fix things. Takeoff hurdle one is first big bomb, but if you’re not working on the ability to make the blocks sing more, airplane arms etc.. what kind of program are you running. Do you just line up full spacing and height and get taller. I’ve coached some good hurdlers and changes need to be made with repetition in skill appropriate environ,ents. Those spacings and those heights aren’t where he needs to be working in for those changes. I see jumpers I almost always go the Winkler approach of just one low hurdle until they figure that out (single hurlde run over it over and over again until they learn posture and takeoff basics (sticks and bricks, pizzza boxes, scissor hurdles or low hurdles 27-30inch you get the idea. Visual feedback, auditory whatever they need and make change. Then scale up into 5 step work (great to work hurdle action and arms) and 3 step work with comfortable spacings and heights to challange them to execute at speed, but hurdle well low first. You don’t need a million drills or a million different days just fix stuff in environments that are appropriate and then scale up when the skill is there and stable.

        Party wrong because incomplete. For someone at his level of development a few little cues can make a huge difference.

        That said, what you outline above is spot on. From a progression standpoint, would be smart to start low and spaced close, gradually raising hurdles and spreading them out to close to full distance.

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        RussZHC on #117579

        I know, late to the conversation…

        Visual feedback, [b]auditory[/b] whatever they need and make change

        did not have time yet to slow the video down but you don’t even need the video for your second clip…just use the audio…you can hear what is wrong and, at least partially, that can give you a place to start improvements
        [there is rhythm but too slow, long ground contacts etc. AND, if the video was longer I’d bet it slows more each subsequent hurdle…point with that being don’t get fixated on a single hurdle, while important (obviously the role 1H plays as to set up for later flights) if speed is scrubbing off each clearance it will not be pretty…certainly “survivable” indoors over 5 but a very different story over 10H]

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