Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Long jumpers do better with a spring in their step

Date:
July 2, 2014
Source:
Society for Experimental Biology
Summary:
Long jumpers and triple jumpers spend hours training to perfect their take-off. But what influences their performance? Scientists have discovered that taking off from a compliant surface -- such as a springboard -- compared with a firm, unyielding surface, reduces the energy cost of jumping over long distances.

Athletes test the effectiveness of different take-off surfaces.
Credit: Dr. Lewis Halsey

Long jumpers and triple jumpers spend hours training to perfect their take-off. But what influences their performance? Scientists have discovered that taking off from a compliant surface (such as a springboard) compared with a firm, unyielding surface, reduces the energy cost of jumping over long distances.

Related Articles


Dr Lewis Halsey and his colleagues conducted the study on trained athletes, capable of undertaking jumps repeatedly. The participants jumped a set distance (1.2 or 1.8 m), taking off from a range of different surfaces. Each wore a portable gas analyser to measure oxygen consumption, a good indication of energy expenditure. As predicted, the highest energy costs were caused by taking off from soft surfaces, such as thick crash mats. For the longer distance, however, jumping from a springboard was less energetically expensive than using a firm surface.

There are two possible explanations for this. Firstly, a compliant surface allows the angle of take-off to be closer to the optimum of 45 degrees, which gives maximum energy efficiency. Alternatively, firm surfaces cause the calf muscle to be used more, which produces energy less efficiently than the thigh muscle because it has to contract more quickly. Surprisingly, for the shorter distance, no difference was observed in the energy expenditure for firm and springy surfaces. Dr Halsey believes this may be due to the jumps being "too easy" for the athletes such that the take-off angle or muscle group used had little effect.

This research was presented at the Society for Experimental Biology Annual Meeting 2014 held at Manchester University, UK, from the 1st - 4th of July.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Society for Experimental Biology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Society for Experimental Biology. "Long jumpers do better with a spring in their step." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 July 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140702203812.htm>.
Society for Experimental Biology. (2014, July 2). Long jumpers do better with a spring in their step. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140702203812.htm
Society for Experimental Biology. "Long jumpers do better with a spring in their step." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140702203812.htm (accessed December 18, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Kids Die While Under Protective Services

Kids Die While Under Protective Services

AP (Dec. 18, 2014) As part of a six-month investigation of child maltreatment deaths, the AP found that hundreds of deaths from horrific abuse and neglect could have been prevented. AP's Haven Daley reports. (Dec. 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
UN: Up to One Million Facing Hunger in Ebola-Hit Countries

UN: Up to One Million Facing Hunger in Ebola-Hit Countries

AFP (Dec. 17, 2014) Border closures, quarantines and crop losses in West African nations battling the Ebola virus could lead to as many as one million people going hungry, UN food agencies said on Wednesday. Duration: 00:52 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Can fat disappear into thin air? New research finds that during weight loss, over 80 percent of a person's fat molecules escape through the lungs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Your Boss Should Let You Sleep In

Why Your Boss Should Let You Sleep In

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) According to research out of the University of Pennsylvania, waking up for work is the biggest factor that causes Americans to lose sleep. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins