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Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

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  • Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

    I recall reading somewhere that in the LJ, the optimum effort sees the athlete hit the pit, and just save the jump (by not falling backward). In Mexico City, Beamon's famous jump has him falling forward, and executing a series of small "hops" to come out of the pit. Does this mean that by holding his legs (hang style) longer in the air, and stretching further forward, the jump could have been longer than 8.90 m? What about other famous jumps, Owens at Ann Arbor (any film of this?), or Berlin, Powell at Tokyo? Or for that matter many of Carl Lewis's high 28/low 29 jumps? Comments from experts?

  • #2
    Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

    Ain't exactly an expert (have LJ'ed for 35 years tho, still do), BUT . . . there is absolutely no way that anyone can construe that he coulda shoulda oughta have jumped farther. While there is no such thing as the Perfect Jump, that one was 99.9% of the way there.

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    • #3
      Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

      Sure it should have, but only if he were jumping at 10,000 feet instead of 7000 and the tailwind was 5mps instead of 4mps.

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      • #4
        Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

        I remember reading an article about this topic in Soviet Sports Review I believe it was.
        It discussed how Beamon lifted his legs extremely high and it looked like he was reaching for all he was worth, but by the time his legs hit the sand he was overotated and lost some distance, although I can't remember how far they were speculating, maybe 10-20cm.
        Although a lot of people speculate the wind was too strong and he obviously was at a very high altitude

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        • #5
          Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

          "they were speculating, maybe 10-20cm"

          damn, I knew he had a 29'10 in him!

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          • #6
            Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

            Yeah, if you look at the old sequence photos of Beamon's behemoth jump, it is the altitude he achieved off the board that is stunning. He seems to be sailing past the pit officials at head height. Anyone ever seen a long jumper get more airborne?

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            • #7
              Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

              If Carl Lewis or Mike Powell jumped with the same style, legs high upin front, you'd say the same thing. As long as they were hitchkicking, looks like they're relatively close to the ground. I'm not completely clear on the physics, but I'm pretty sure that if they jump as far, their apogee has to be about the same.

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              • #8
                Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

                Well, obviously you don't need as much height if you are going faster. It's hard to imagine that BB could outrun CL, but on that jump he was clearly haulin'.

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                • #9
                  Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

                  >If Carl Lewis or Mike Powell jumped with the same
                  >style, legs high upin front, you'd say the same
                  >thing. As long as they were hitchkicking, looks
                  >like they're relatively close to the ground. I'm
                  >not completely clear on the physics, but I'm
                  >pretty sure that if they jump as far, their
                  >apogee has to be about the same.

                  This is correct. The issue is getting the center of mass off the ground in an optimal trajectory. From physics standpoint, the optimal trajectory is something around 40 -42 degrees (biomechanists might post the right number here) and not 45 degrees because the jumper's center of mass is roughly waist height and ends up on the ground. As a result, the optimal trajectory is a little more out than up. But there's no human anywhere who's strong/quick enough to get that much vertical velocity when running near max speed. So the takeoff trajectory in the LJ ends up being much less than optimal from a physics standpoint. Nonetheless, the higher the better as long as getting that height doesn't come at the expense of a horizontal braking force that scrubs off horizontal velocity. That would be called the high jump (or the pop-up drill you see LJers doing in warmup).

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                  • #10
                    Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

                    Mike Powell was up there on his WR jump. Stones estimates his whole body could've cleared 5'6" or so during that jump. Of course, he's no physics expert.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

                      "their apogee has to be about the same."

                      "This is correct."

                      No, it's not. Some jumpers prefer to keep their h velocity at a maximum and are willing to give up some v velocity. Others opt to transfer more of the hv into vv by putting more 'braking' action in the takeoff and getting a higher apogee. There are 27'-ers who 'line drive' and there are others who 'pop up'. BB was able to maximize both. CL, for all his speed, may have braked more than MP. I believe that 'Track Technique' had a great discussion about this, but memory does not serve here.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

                        What about other famous jumps, Owens at
                        >Ann Arbor (any film of this?), or Berlin, Powell
                        >at Tokyo? Or for that matter many of Carl
                        >Lewis's high 28/low 29 jumps?


                        Sorry I have no footage of Owens' 8.13m in 1935 at Ann Arbor.
                        I have footage of his jump in Berlin, but am unable to transfer it to the net. I mention a link to this Video on the internet below.
                        I have found a couple of links to many jumping videos.

                        Bob Beamon's 8.90m (excellent footage). This was posted on the Charlie Francis Forums by a guy called 'los'. He has posted many quality videos which I have 'linked'to forums & message boards before:

                        http://los.idx.com.au/bobbeamon.zip

                        Carl Lewis' winning jump at 1983 Helsinki WCH Men's Long Jump final:

                        http://www.carllewis.com/video.jumping.4.html

                        Carl Lewis' winning jump at 1992 Barcelona OG Men's Long Jump final:

                        http://www.carllewis.com/video.jumping.2.html

                        Carl Lewis 8.60m jump:
                        http://www.carllewis.com/video.jumping.5.html

                        Carl lewis' 8.50m winning jump at 1996 Atlanta OG Men's Long Jump final:
                        http://www.carllewis.com/video.jumping.1.html

                        Carl Lewis' 8.54m winning jump at 1984 Los Angeles OG Men's Long Jump final:
                        http://www.carllewis.com/video.jumping.3.html

                        Scroll down the page of this link, and you will find a Jesse Owens Video. It shows footage of his 8.06m jump in Berlin:

                        http://www.olympic.org/uk/utilities/mul ... VID&page=1

                        The 2nd Video on this page is footage of JJK's 7.40m at Seoul 1988:
                        http://www.olympic.org/uk/utilities/mul ... VID&page=5

                        Carl Lewis' 8.91m windy at 1991 Tokyo WCH Men's Long Jump final:
                        http://digilander.libero.it/rzocca/video/Lewis_8_91.avi

                        Mike Powell's 8.95m winning jump at 1991 Tokyo WCH Men's Long Jump final:
                        http://digilander.libero.it/rzocca/vide ... l_8_95.avi

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                        • #13
                          Re: Should Beamon's 8.90 m LJ have been longer?

                          Thanks to "The King".

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