Fosbury Flop
High Jump, Instruction, Technique

Fosbury Flop: How To Maneuver In The Air

Fosbury Flop Tips To Raise The Crossbar.

Fosbury Flop technique exists because humans aren’t meant to fly. Our ancestors developed other skills like running and hiding to gather food and prevent demise. The stratosphere and soaring jumpers were not in the equation.

Any airborne knowledge gained by our ancestors soon perished and the wind stopped blowing through their hair when they went splat, from a crash landing.

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High jumpers today, however, manipulate the developed running skills to soar over high crossbars but it’s not easy, and it’s still not natural. Here’s how high jumper’s fly through the air.

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Fosbury Flop Blocking

Blocking starts at takeoff but also carries into the first part of the flight.

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Remember, as a high jumper, you gather momentum and stop it quickly at the right angle to move the momentum upwards. This is the blocking movement.

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Critically, you should hold the block and your arms should have elbows as high as the shoulders with a 90 degree bend.

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Additionally, the knee block looks like a 90° angle as well with the knee at the hip level. The knee block crosses your body slightly and points away from the crossbar.

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Most importantly, hold the angles after you leave the ground. Don’t drop the knee. Hold it in the same place.

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Finally, your head should stay away from the bar as far as possible during these moves.

Fosbury Flop Initial Flight

Now, your plant foot is off the ground and liftoff has happened. This is where the other 10% of the high jump happens.

Once again, hold your blocking positions after your foot leaves the ground. You need time to go up and less movement is better.

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Comparatively, imagine how much momentum you would lose if you started flailing while flying?

Let the work you’ve done in the J approach take over.  In reality, you will naturally twist in the air from running the curve angle correctly and your butt will face the bar.

By leaning away from the crossbar until foot plant, a rotation will naturally happen and start to bring your lower half of body up to meet and go above the top half of your body. You will somersault backward…..naturally! You don’t have to do anything.

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Again, hold your blocking angles and let the twist and rotation happen on its own.

Fosbury Flop – The Crossbar

Keep holding the angles until your hips start to get near the crossbar because it allows the body continue to move up.

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As the hips near the crossbar, it’s now time to arch! Arching means to throw your head back as far as possible and arching also means to bend backward at the hips.

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As a matter of fact, arching allows you gain a few inches while your Center-Of-Mass travels under the crossbar. Additionally, the more arch, the higher you can get above your COM.

Fosbury Flop – Knees Above Crossbar

As your body continues to rotate and you are arching, your knees will approach the crossbar.

You will be at a point where your knees are bent and high above your head. Your basically hanging upside down in the air with a huge bent knee angle.

Even though you’re rotating, it won’t be enough to clear your calves. You’ll have to throw your head back up and try to press your chin on your chest. this helps the legs straighten at the knees and gives the calves and feet room to clear the crossbar.

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After your legs and feet clear the bar, you will still be rotating so bend your knees again to speed it up and land more safely.

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Fosbury Flop – Into The Pit

You want to still be rotating when you enter the pit so your lower extremities will go over your head as you land.

Furthermore, your landing should be on the neck but not in a jarring fashion. This is because your neck hits the mat while your legs go over your head and rotate you into an all-fours position where your hand and feet are touching the mat together.

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Caution, if you notice a landing another way, it means a part of your J approach is incorrect.

Fosbury Flop – The Aftermath

You will want to be on all fours when you finish landing because it makes it easier for you to jump in elation while yelling. Your confidence will soar as you complete a successful high jump.

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Oh, and one more thing, please comment with additional knowledge and insight to benefit high jumpers everywhere.


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