You can tell which long jumpers have had the most training because they fly pretty and land hard. Agoura’s Lauren Thai has a long jump flight form that certainly fits that description. It’s hard to describe, but you know it when you see it. There are three commonly accepted flight techniques for the long jump: the hang, the sail, and the hitch-kick.
In all three, the athletes sell out to the air. Lauren appears to hang forever in the first part of her flight. The goal of each technique is to control the flight and land with as much of your forward momentum intact as possible. How you land greatly influences the distance measured and I find that the best jumpers land hard, creating an intense explosion of sand. And I love capturing it.
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