The Triple Jump Take Off: Which Foot Is Best?

Should An Athlete Use Their Dominant Foot For The Triple Jump Take-Off?

Which foot should a young athlete use for the triple jump take-off?

Should they use the same foot that they use when long jumping – their dominant leg? Or should they use the opposite foot so that they end up using the dominant leg for the “jump” portion of the sequence?

The Triple Jump Sequence

A triple jump is made up of a “hop – step – jump” sequence. There are three “take-offs”: one for the hop, one for the step and one for the jump.

The athlete will either do a right foot hop, then a right foot step, then a left foot jump OR a left foot hop, then a left foot step and a right foot jump.

As you can see, in each case, the first two take-offs will be on the leg they start with, with the final take-off done on the other leg.

Triple Jump Step Blog

The Jump Take-Off

The jump phase of a triple jump is like a long jump. Therefore, should an athlete aim to do the jump phase off the same foot as they would for their long jump? It makes sense doesn’t it?

It would simply mean that an athlete start the hop on their opposite foot so that the final phase is done on their “long jump foot”.

It may sound like it makes sense, but this is not the best way to go.

Which Foot To Hop With?

I recommend beginning (hopping) with the same take-off foot that is used for long jump.

This means the athletes will hop and step off their strongest foot and need only do one take-off from their non-preferred side. Done the other way, they will need to perform two take-offs from their non-preferred foot and only one take-off from their strongest foot.

Another consideration is that landing from the hop and launching into the step is often the part that most young athletes have trouble with. It is much better done with the preferred side than the non-preferred side.

The easiest part of the triple jump is the jump phase. If one phase has to be done with the non-preferred leg, this is it.

Summary

The first take-off in a triple jump sequence should be done from an athlete’s preferred leg. This will usually be the same take-off leg that they use when long jumping. This will mean that they hop and step off their preferred leg, and jump from their non-preferred leg.

Further reading

3 Articles That Will Improve Your Triple Jump Coaching

How To Help Kids Conquer Their Biggest Triple Jump Fear

Recommended Online Course

Complete Jumps Training by Athletes Acceleration

There are links on this page from which Coaching Young Athletes can earn a small commission. This adds no cost to you but helps to keep this blog sustainable. I really appreciate if you do purchase through my links. I only specifically recommended products that I use myself and love. Thanks for your support. Darren


If this post helped you please take a moment to help others by sharing it on social media. If you want to learn more I encourage you to leave questions and comments or contact me directly.


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

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