The purposes of this study were to determine the frequency with which triple jumpers used hop-dominated, balanced, and jump-dominated techniques to achieve their best distances in Olympic competition; whether the use of one of these techniques generally yielded greater actual distances than did the use of the others; and how the actual distances achieved by specific athletes were related to the way in which they distributed their efforts through the three phases. Data were collected at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. About half the competitors used a hop-dominated technique. Balanced and jump-dominated techniques were just as effective as hop-dominated techniques. Four of the top eight finishers tended to use hop percentages that were longer than the optimum for them.
This work was conducted while the author was with the Department of Exercise Science, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242. He is now with the Department of Sport and Exercise Science at the University of Auckland, Private Bag 92019, Auckland, New Zealand.