People here seem to know a lot about jumps, so i'll give it a shot. I tore my hamstrings about 4 weeks ago on my takeoff foot for the triplejump (i use the other leg for long) and only recently have i been able to sprint again. I'm noticeably slower, but thats not all thats affecting my jumps. I've noticed that i seem to slow down immensly on the last 3 or 4 steps to the board, and my stride pattern and my steps are different after the injury. That, combined with my lack of speed from not running in 4 weeks, has prevented me from hitting my usual marks of 20' long and 42' triple. I also seem to be spending less time in the air during my jump, which is probably a result of the poor board approach. I was wondering if anyone knew of any ways to get back into jumping shape so i can be agressive the whole length of the runway, and any ways of keeping a fast pace all the way until the takeoff. Any advice is appreciated, thanks.
Remember just as importantly as your lost speed due to injury is your loss of strength. This is going to affect every aspect of your jumps…stride length/frequency and steps in your approach, takeoff at the board, and a lesser time in the air due to the weaker takeoff.
Have you sufficiently rehabilitated your hamstring. You mentioned it was a tear…leading me to believe that 4 weeks may possibly be pushing it too much (if you're expecting to hit those same marks as prior to your injury).
What I'm saying here is to not push this too hard too soon…if you truly feel it is time to start working out hard on this hamstring then there are things you can do to get back to that former strength. What types of specifics are you looking for???
All i want to do is be able to hit my old marks again. During the early part of my rehab i did hamstrings curls and focused on bringing the weight down slowly. As my hamstrings got stronger, I focused more on deadlifts and squats (5×5, 195 and 315 lbs respectively) and combined with some slow running, a few 50 meter sprints in 8 seconds or so per sprint, not very fast. I have no trouble with my hamstrings now while doing runways or short sprints like that, afterwards its a bit sore but thats expected. But i dont have my old speed, nor my old pop. I'm looking for ways to get back my short sprinting speed, and fix up my takeoff because i seem to slow down when i hit the board and i dont get much height on my jumps. I'm most concerned with my takeoff, with my new steps i hesitate almost as i reach the board nowadays, resulting in a large decrease in speed before takeoff, and i was looking for ways to change this as well as increase my runway speed.
First question is… how long is your current approach? Do you feel it's too long for you to handle at the present time? With this lost speed you will be slower at the board, and on top of this if you are fighting too long of an approach, your jumps will continue to be off.
Now, first focus on mastering your approach. You mentioned new steps…don't worry about the board right now. Break this approach down and concentrate on mastery here…off the runway (work on it on the track to start). If you haven't done this already, I'd advise you to think about implementing a 'tempo count' for your approach steps. Start slowly with this and simply count every takeoff foot as you proceed down the runway. If you have a 9 step approach (18 total strides), you'll pop on '9' If this feels uncomfortable at first, do it with a light jog at first, then progressively increase your speed. It will take practice. I have had much success with this both as an athlete and coach.
This will, in time, eliminate the 'hesitation' in your approach, especially in that crucial time at the board.
Now, your takeoff is a direct result of what has happened on your full approach, so that is the first thing I believe you should focus on…however, it is of course directly correlated to the penultimate step (which is a whole different animal!!) that isn't worth getting into right here. Do think about this penultimate step though, and ask yourself if you are performing the proper lowering that you will need to have a successful 'Pop.'
As far as runway speed goes, there are a couple things you can do to progressively get this speed back. If you don't perform Flying 30's in your current workouts, I'd strongly advocate for them. These are great for work on your MaxV and I think they're dynamite for jumpers (since they concentrate on a short burst of speed). Also, 10,20 m accelerators are helpful here as well. The 10m short accels. will help you with the start of your approach in particular (where the first 4-7 strides are very key) to a successful jump.
Lastly, if you want to 'fix up' your takeoff, remember to fix your approach first, gaining your speed back while you work on this, and perform some takeoff drills like a 'Run Run Jump' or a pop up drill off a box or board if you have access to one. I'm sure you have worked various drills in the past with your team (??) but there are many to choose from.
Hope some of this helps in some way for you. Just flat out work hard, which I'm sure you've been doing, and these things will come full circle.
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