Hurdling is an exciting track and field event that requires skill, technique, and speed. To become a great hurdler, you need to combine both physical and technical skills. Hurdles come in different sizes, but the 110m and 400m hurdles are the most popular ones. In this article, we will discuss the best techniques for hurdling that can help you improve your performance.
1. Proper Hurdle Set-Up:
The hurdle set-up is the first and most important technique you should master when hurdling. The proper set-up consists of approaching the first hurdle with the right speed, height, and rhythm. Start off by finding your optimal stride pattern, which can be determined by your speed, leg length, and the space between hurdles. Make sure to run at a comfortable yet assertive pace towards the first hurdle and focus on maintaining a straight line. Your arms should be relaxed yet active, swinging back and forth, and your eyes fixed on the hurdle, not on the ground.
2. Body Position:
Proper body position is essential for hurdling. Your body should be in a forward-leaning position, with your hips and shoulders aligned and your arms extended forward. Your trail leg should be pulled up high behind you, and your lead leg should be lifting up as you approach the hurdle. As you clear the hurdle, your trail leg should extend towards the ground, and your lead leg should cycle back down.
3. Rhythm and Timing:
Mastering your timing and rhythm is crucial in hurdling. Hurdling requires a cycle of jumps every few steps, so you need to develop a natural rhythm while running. Maintain your pacing and timing while approaching the hurdle. You can practice by using hurdles that are lower than your normal competition height.
Good footwork is essential for excellent hurdling performance. As you approach the hurdle, your lead leg should come in contact with the hurdle first, followed by the trail leg, then jump and clear the hurdle. You should land on the ball of your foot, roll onto your midfoot and push off the ground to maintain your momentum.
5. Consistent Practice and Strengthening:
Hurdling requires a lot of various muscles in your body to work together, so it’s essential to develop a strong and fit physique. Consistent practice and strengthening exercises can help you build the necessary muscles for better performance. Exercises such as deep squats, lunges, and plyometrics can improve your explosiveness, strength, and power.
In conclusion, hurdling is a fun and exciting track and field event, but it requires more than just speed and raw talent. By mastering the techniques discussed in this article, you can improve your hurdling performance and become a successful hurdler. Remember, consistency and practice are key to improving your skills, so keep practicing, stay motivated, and enjoy hurdling!