The triple jump is an athletics
(track and field) event, previously also known as "hop, step
and jump", whose various names describe the actions a competitor
takes. The athlete runs down a runway until he reaches a designated
mark, from which the jump is measured. The takeoff mark is a board,
and in modern championships a strip of plasticine is
attached to the board to record athletes overstepping the mark.
The first landing has to be done with the takeoff foot. The next
phase is a step,landing on the opposite foot, and is followed by
the jump, into a sand-filled box, as in the long jump. A
"foul" or missed jump occurs when a jumper oversteps the launch
mark (most commonly), misses the pit entirely, or does not
perform the attempt in the allotted amount of time (usually
about one minute).
The triple jump has been included in the modern Olympic Games
since its first celebration in 1896. In fact, the first
modern Olympic Champion, James
Connolly, was a triple jumper, however, the event at this
time consisted of two hops and a jump. In 1996, a triple jump
event for women was added to the Olympics, having already been
included in both the
Outdoor World Championships and
World Indoor Championships.
The triple jump requires speed, power, rhythm and resilience.
However, athletes with limited natural ability can still do well by
developing a good technique. If an athlete has reasonable 100m
speed (under 12 seconds), and is prepared to complete a training
program of weight-training, plyometrics and technical work, she or
he might eventually be able to achieve distances in excess of 13 or
even 14 metres.
The current male and female world record holders are
Edwards of the UK, with a
jump of 18.29 metres (Göteborg,
August 7, 1995) and
of Ukraine with a jump
of 15.50 metres (Göteborg, August 10, 1995).
The men's world indoor record is shared by Aliecer
Urrutia of Cuba and Christian
Olsson of Sweden with a mark of
17.83 metres. The women's world indoor record measures 15.36
metres, jumped by Tatyana
Lebedeva of Russia at the
2004 IAAF World Indoor Championships.