Today we started out of practice with triple jump work. The new jumpers focused on putting together the entire jump with some moderate speed. They set up the banana hurdles on the roll out foam runways and attacked harder than they have all season thus far. It is amazing to me how much they have already transformed! The video above is of a new jumper from week 1. He was extremely uncomfortable during this session, and ended up staying afterwards to ask for more instruction. That was when I got the idea to document his growth this year. My hope is that we will see a great deal of change as the year continues. As mentioned above, the previous video was from week 1 - check this one out from this week (week 3)!
He actually had just jumped an even better jump, but I feel you can definitely see how much he has grown in a small amount of time! I'm getting really excited for my first opportunity to jump him in the next week or so! I'll post the video of his jumps and breakdown what I'll focus on next with him. Keeping my fingers crossed that he'll perform as well as I believe he is capable of!
The veteran jumpers worked away from the mats and worked the first and second phases. I had them off of them foam mats because I want their bodies to properly acclimate to harder surfaces as that's what they will experience at meets.
After triple work the jumpers all joined their sprint teammates and ran hills.
When sprints was done I got to work with the long jumpers and we focused on the "flat, flat" motions once again using soft plyo boxes. If you end up using soft plyo boxes I want to quickly caution you to make sure the setup that you are using is safe for your athletes. An athlete of mine took a nasty tumble off of the box and if I can help you and your jumpers avoid the same fate I'd like to do all I can!
I'd suggest either standing on the opposite end they are jumping towards to help any jumpers that might stumble, or doing your box jumps right next to a high jump mat or some kind of cushioning. Being close to a padded wall could also help, but that gets a little more tricky because they could run into the wall as well.
Simply put, please take the time and effort to think through ALL drills that you have your athletes perform and ask yourself if you've set them up properly. The tumble my athlete took was honestly an anomaly and I never thought it could happen...I was obviously wrong...
Athlete safety and success are my top priorities as a coach (in that order). It is our jobs as coaches to be as diligent as possible at all times to make sure our athletes are well taken care of.