Use Colours to Cue Young Triple Jumpers

How to Teach the Triple Jump Hop-Step-Jump Sequence

Triple jump is commonly known as an event in which the athlete performs a hop-step-jump sequence. After the initial take-off, the athlete lands on the SAME foot (hop), the OTHER foot (step), then BOTH feet (jump).

Coaches can use the cue of “same foot-other foot-both feet” (or “same-other-both”) to help the athlete to remember “hop-step-jump”.

Coloured cones can be added as a visual aid. You will need five cones – three of one colour and two of a different colour. Let’s say we have three yellow and two green cones.

The cones are placed on the ground in a straight line on a flat surface. There is no need to use the sand pit at this stage. For absolute beginner triple jumpers place each cone three foot-lengths apart in the following order:

1. Yellow

2. Yellow

3. Green

4. Both colours side-by-side

An image showing how to set up coloured cones to provide a visual cue for young athletes learning the triple jump.

The young athlete will:

1. Stand on their hopping leg next to the first yellow cone.

2. Hop to land on the SAME foot next to the second yellow cone.

3. Step to land on the OTHER foot next to the green cone.

4. Jump to land on BOTH feet next to the yellow & green cones.

An even rhythm should be used throughout.

The cue of “same foot – other foot – both feet” is reinforced by the visual cue of the young athlete seeing: same colour – other colour – both colours.

As the athlete improves, the skill can be extended to include a short walk or jog approach. The coach can also progressively increase the gap between the cones, eventually moving the drill to the sand pit for a safe and comfortable landing.

I would love to hear from you!

If you try this way of introducing the triple jump, let me know how it goes. If you have any other ways of teaching the hop-step-jump sequence, please share it. You can leave a comment/reply or connect with me by using the below contact details.

20150614_154020-1Darren Wensor is a sports development professional, coach educator, specialist coach of young athletes and founder of the blog Learn more about him here and connect with him on TwitterFacebookLinkedin or via email.

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