The triple jump is extremely difficult to perform.
The first phase of it can be a nightmare for athletes, due to it's complexity and overall importance to the rest of the jump.
Too often kids get too high, don't rotate their legs properly, and/or lose their posture.
The one thing that can fix this is looking at the first phase not as a jump, but as a continuation of sprinting. This picture illustrates the perfect takeoff angle, posture, and arm/knee drives (everything moving forward - not upward).
Doesn't it look like he's simply sprinting? If you were to quickly look at this picture without knowing the post was focused on triple jump wouldn't you think he was simply doing a run through?
This is the picture "worth 1,000 words". It says so much about the first phase that so many people simply do not understand.
Teach your athletes how to properly takeoff from the board, and continually refer to the first phase as a continuation of sprinting with a small amount of distance between them and the ground.
Just like in long jump angles play a HUGE role at takeoff. There are the jumpers that get too high - making the landing and preparation for the step phase extremely difficult. There are the jumps that don't get any height whatsoever and come down too quickly. The sweet spot is right in the middle of those. They need to continue their sprinting, but do need to get some height as well to ensure they don't perform too little of a hop phase.
When done correctly, the ramifications on the step phase can be immense!