The Journey of a DIII Jumper


Hi guys,

I have decided that I am going to do a (big) project. I know that some (most) of you are pretty much distance fans, but I know we all like learning about all aspects of our sport. And judging by that one post I had on Tamgho’s hitch kick, there is a decent amount of interest in learning about the jumps.

So I am going to document my senior year of collegiate athletics to hopefully bring some more awareness to the field events and Division 3, to educate anybody willing to learn on how certain jumpers train, and to give myself an outlet for my thoughts on how things go.

A background on myself. My name is Joey Pacione, I do LJ/TJ at Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington, IL. My current PR’s stand at 21’7.25" and 46’5.25", both from my sophomore year. I jumped at Lake Park High School in Roselle, IL, and had PR’s of 19’3" and 44’0".

Due to a difference in philosophy with my college coach, I am completely in charge of my own training. He likes to train jumpers like 400 runners, I like to train like a jumper. With the help of my high school coach Tom Kaberna, former LSU guru Boo Schexnayder, tons of reading and purchases, going to USATF Level 1, USTFCCCA TFTC, and the USTFCCCA Jumps specialist certification, I have developed what I think is a very well rounded understanding of jumps training.

My sophomore year is when I was put in charge of my own training. The season was pretty much a dream, with PR’s almost everywhere I went, including winning my outdoor conference meet in Triple Jump. Last year, things just didn’t go too well, and I realized I need to be accountable to myself even when things go poorly. I thankfully got back to the point where I was able to defend the outdoor conference title, but nothing else remotely noteworthy happened.

So I ask that you guys take this journey with me. I’ll be posting daily workouts, rationale behind everything we do in training, and my occasional thoughts on how things are personally shaping up. And hopefully as the year goes on those who read will piece together a very solid idea of jumping and the training involved.

Any questions are welcome and encouraged.

I’ll do my first workout post tonight, recapping the week.


I know virtually nothing about jumps and am interested in this, thanks


Workout for today was

12x30m Hills
5x6 Stiffness Jumps
Snatch from floor 6x5x50%
Half Jump Squats 5x8x25%
Jerks 5x6x25%
OHT 5x5

Today was a high day. We have high and low days in the training philosophy, I’ll delve into those more later. But the hills are only a slight uphill, and concrete, but the point of them is to be a resisted sprint and keep the body in acceleration mechanics for longer. Think of it like running with sleds.
The stiffness jumps are dropping off of a box and jumping straight up, then stepping back onto the box for the next rep. Jerks are also known as push press.
OHT is overhead throw with a medicine ball straight up. We use a lighter weight, like 3 kilograms, so the speed and height/distance of the throw is the goal.

Tomorrow I will put up Monday through Thursday, and since Sunday is a day of no training, I will use it to start to lay the base for my philosophy of training.


Definitely curious to see how this turns out, since i know absolutely nothing about the technique and training for jumpers.


Please continue to include your strength work. I assume you have read all of the threads on I think most high school jumpers could improve a great deal by implementing more strength exercises.

Do you implement Boo’s med ball/shot multi-throws? He is actually a fairly decent acquaintance of mine. The profanity he implements during workouts would make Katt Williams blush.


elitetrack is definitely a favorite site of mine, and don’t worry, the weight room will be included in any workout that it shows up. I agree that especially in high school the weight room is where athletes can make up the most ground.

I do use Boo’s multi-throws. In fact, I would say about 90% of what I do stems from Boo in some way. The man is simply a genius when it comes to the entire sport, and I feel that you’d be silly not to listen to him. I also always got the feeling that he is a completely different person out on the track vs. in the classroom. He instructed both USTFCCCA Courses I have been to, and he’s very close with my high school coach Tom Kaberna. When you’re with him, and when he’s teaching, he is the nicest man on the planet, though blunt in the best way possible when people ask stupid questions. I would love to see him in action.

For Multi-throws Med balls make more sense for me because of the facilities/small group as it’s just me and our other jumper Brenden. So using a shot would take much longer to get the reps in than just tossing a med ball back and forth on the basketball courts in the fieldhouse.


Today, like all Saturdays, was what we call an extensive day. For us, that’s tempo running, which is any intervals between 70 and 90%, usually about 1000 total meters.

Today was 5x200 at 73% with 3 minutes rest between each. The pace for me was 32.75 because my 200 PR is right around 24 seconds. Brenden runs closer to a 23.3 so he ran them in 32.20.

After the tempo running was a bodybuilding circuit. It consists of 24 sets of 10 reps of varying lifts with short rest in between (60-90s). Generally they are smaller muscle groups, and the point of them is to stimulate a hormonal response that promotes recovery. The lifts of the circuit today were:
Single Leg Hamstring Curl
Crossover Step Up
Straight Leg Dead Lift
Reverse Hyperextension with twist
Bent Over Row
Lat Pull Down
Military Press
Single Leg Quad Extension
Weighted Crunches
Hanging V-Ups
Weighted Russian Twist
Weighted V-Ups.

We go through that twice to get the 24 sets.

Last thing of the day were barefoot walks as a cooldown. We do these to strengthen the small muscles in the foot to prevent injuries such a shin splints.


Now I’ll explain the reason that we do tempo running as jumpers. For speed training, first off, everything is at 100% effort. So the hills yesterday were 100%, and with full effort comes full rest, at about 1 minute per 10 meters run.

There are 3 classifications of speed training.

  1. Acceleration - the act of overcoming inertia and building yourself to top speed. Anywhere from 10-40 meters for most athletes.
  2. Absolute Speed (Maximum Velocity) - the fastest that an athlete can run. Usually lasts about 2-3 seconds, so about 40-70 meters total including acceleration. 40 for the young and slow, 70 for your usual stud. The world class athletes actually end their Max V around 80-90 meters because they can accelerate forever.
  3. Speed Endurance - for a sprinter, this refers to the ability to resist decelerating. So Bolt only decelerates for about 10 meters in a 100m dash, but somebody like me will decelerate for 30-40 meters of a 100. For jumpers, this is a very specific coordination training as it allows for comfort in running high speeds, and it’s the highest intensity sprinting we can do. Because it’s so high intensity, we have to build up to it from both sides…

Enter tempo running. While we work up to speed endurance on the sprinting side with acceleration and absolute speed, we work up to it on the other side with tempo running. Extensive tempo (like we did today) is usually between 70-80% of your projected PR, and Intensive tempo is between 80-90%. This allows us to build up on the other side, from slow to fast. So by the time speed endurance comes, we’ve run 100% up to maybe 70-80m, and also run 200s at 25.5 for somebody with a 23.0 PR. This way, we are completely prepared for speed endurance.

Once you get into that 90% area, it’s more worth your time just to do Speed Endurance rather than a tempo workout, because your body usually doesn’t know the difference.

A quick note, you distance runners are crazy mother****ers. I know I’m relatively slow, but those 32’s weren’t exactly easy, and the fact that you guys run significantly faster than that in a middle distance race blows my mind, so props to you.


Guys I apologize for skipping out on Sunday, it was just a big day of homework.

In a nutshell, our training is based on improving the performance of the nervous system. So we have a high day and a low day in our philisophy. A high day is geared towards improving the nervous system, so it includes high intensity activities and enough rest between reps and sets to ensure high quality. You may not be huffing and puffing from a high day, but neural fatigue is a different animal. A low day is anything that doesn’t include neural activites, though it is hard in its own right as it’s usually more taxing aerobically as it includes a lot of circuits. This way we can train “hard” every day, because we are training a different system each day. So your nervous system can actually recover during a low day even though the perceived effort is just as great.

Almost always for us, M W F are high days and T TH Sa are low days.




Today was a classic Monday for us

5x20m, 5x30m, 2x40m, all from a 4pt start, which is a block stance with no blocks.
Saturn x3
Clean from floor 6x5x55%
Jump Lunges 5x8x30% of bodyweight (Squat 4x8x70%)
Speed Incline Press 5x6x25% (Incline Press 4x8x70%)
Pullups 4x8
5x5 BLFT

The sprints are all at 100%, in spikes, and with full rest at about 1 minute per 10 meters run. Saturn is a list of bounding exercises. It includes Standing Long Jump (SLJ), 3 SLJ’s in a row, Standing Triple Jump both legs, Right Right Left Left, and Left Left Right Right. We do each of those 3 times.

With lifting, we use percentages of our maximum to determine the weight used each day. So for instance, my clean max is 240, my squat is 315, and my bench is 200. For cleans then, it was 130 lbs today. For lunges, it was 30% of my bodyweight which is 45 lbs. For speed bench, it’s 25% of 200, so 50.
BLFT is between leg forward throw with the medicine ball.

The lifting in parentheses is what Brenden, my training partner does. Once you get to a certain level of strength per bodyweight (2.3x for squat, 1.7x for clean, 1.7x for bench roughly), it’s good to stay away from traditional static lifts and do explosive ones like jump lunges, jump squats, speed bench, etc. So I have moved on to the explosive lifts, but Brenden has strength to gain, so he is still doing static lifts.

We do our bounding in the pits, and have markers every foot so we roughly measure how far we go since we start from the same spot. Today I had an unexpected PR in the standing triple jump. I have only surpassed 30 feet once, and it was in a testing situation, in spikes (more on testing in a few weeks). Today, in the middle of our workout I jumped 30’4 without spikes on for the standing triple jump, so I was elated. I really love that because we train so high intensity, we are able to hit little markers like that daily, whereas distance training usually doesn’t.

Not sorry for the long post, but hope you guys can digest and enjoy all of the info.


This is the really cool thing about sprint/jump training. I have a couple of calendars that Coach Shaver made for his group at LSU. I’ll redact them and post them when I have the time.


Thanks Yoshi, that would be really great to see.


This is good stuff (and I never read this board).

Looks similar to a lot of the stuff I did while training. Boo was very close with my college coach (she was at LSU while he was coaching there) and my (first) jumps coach got a lot of his info from him.

Your posts make me realize how old and fat I’ve become. As I sit here eating fried chicken. No shame.


Today was a low day. Technique will always be located on low days for us. Early in the year we start to introduce a little bit of jump technique, and when October rolls around, we’ll jump right into technique work twice a week.

I have an aside related to the wording of all my workouts. I find it much easier to give a name to everything that is in a group. So for instance yesterday, Saturn is the group of bounding exercises we do, but calling it Saturn and then being to look on the sheet makes it much easier writing workouts. This comes up today, that’s why I bring it up.

Today’s Workout
Bounding Series T 3x15m
GS Circuit 1 20/40 scramble
Pillar 30/30
Bodybuilding A 2x10
Barefoot Circuit 1

Series T is repeated takeoffs, working on long jump. We focus early on simple things like landing flat footed (not toe bashing) and later on work with penultimate mechanics and more fun things. I’ll talk more about technique specifics as that time comes in my training.

GS Circuit is a group of general strength/calisthenic exercises. For instance, jumping jacks, pushups, burpees, V-Ups, squats. They are all just body weight as the loading. General strength exercises get us comfortable working with our bodyweight, improves coordination, and improves general strength (aka outside of the weightroom). Very useful for those football players who can bench 300 but can’t do 20 pushups in a row.

20/40 refers to 20 seconds of work, 40 seconds of rest for each exercise, and scramble means that after each period of work, you do a 10 meter sprint. Scramble circuits will really get the breathing going heavy, and it’s a good way to get moderate amounts of lactate in the system without needing to do interval workouts. Really saves the legs. The reason lactate is important is that a moderate amount of lactate work can actually be beneficial for recovery. For an advanced athlete, general strength work is more of a recovery, but for a 14 year old it can be the extent of the strength training that you do with them.

Pillar is simply an abdominal exercise circuit, 15 exercises, nothing out of the ordinary. 30/30 again is 30 seconds of work, 30 seconds of rest.

Bodybuilding I talked about on Saturday. The reason we do it twice a week is that early on it’s very good to get the endocrine system working hard and often, as it establishes good baselines for the year. The endocrine system merely means hormones (HGH, Testosterone).

Lastly, barefoot walks and scorpius. Barefoot circuit 1 is merely going the length of the basketball court on your toes, heels, outsides, and insides both forward and backward. Scorpius is duck walks forward, backward, and sideways each way.


High day today, with a theme of max velocity. Each day we have a theme, and to an extent each exercise reflects that.

Stadium x10
Mars x2 20/40
Push Press 6x5x55% (130)
Split Squat 4x8x70% (175) 4 sets each leg (Brenden did Pause Squat 4x8x70%)
Speed Half Incline Press 5x8x25% (Pause Bench 4x8x70% for Brenden)
OHBT 5x5

Stadium steps are probably different than most people think of. We run up the bleachers making sure we hit every stair as tall as possible. The point is to introduce max velocity mechanics, so that when we begin to focus on it come October, vertical upright pushing isn’t necessarily something new.

Mars is a multi-jump circuit. 20s work, 40s rest. Things like tuck jumps, lunge jumps, pike jumps, lane hops. It is to build jumping volumes to prepare for the fun stuff in the next few months, plus the fact that it is pushing straight up and down fits into the day’s theme.

OHBT is overhead back throw, and that comes with a story today.

We usually throw on the basketball courts to have the lines give us an idea of whether we’re slacking or not. Last year I could usually hit the 3 point line from the baseline if I was feeling really good. Brenden and I always come up with challenges on our last set of 5, like hit the 3 point line 3 out of 5 times. Today, I was getting really close to the free throw line, and even hit it about 5 times total in my first 4 sets. Brenden issued me the challenge of going past the free throw line all 5 times in the last set. I passed with flying colors and am very excited, as it’s always good to see progress, no matter what part of training it is.


Low day today, by far the most down day of the week. Kind of lets us recharge heading into a good high day tomorrow and our interval workout Saturday.

Pluto 2x15m
Contreras 3x10
Bootes 12 reps each
Barefoot Circuit 1

Pluto is simply the name given to the warmup drills for triple jump. They are all small amplitude hops that allow us to focus on basics of bounding mechanics. Those basics include landing flat footed, having tall hips, catching and pushing off the ground vs. slapping or pulling, and making sure that the swing leg (non jump leg) comes through long like a pendulum. Doing the warmup drills early in the year prepares to start doing technique work soon.

Contreras is a glute circuit, basically as prehab. It includes assisted squats, band walks, and hip thrusts.

Bootes is a general strength medicine ball circuit. It is a lot of throwing back and forth and doing ab exercises with the ball. For a younger athlete, just like general strength, it would be strength work. For older athletes like myself, it’s more of a recovery modality.

Barefoot is the same, and Gemini is a series of barefooted squats, lunges, and calf raises to work on the connective tissue in the lower leg.


I’m sorry for my weekend long absence, I went home for the weekend.

At this point, anything you’ve seen shouldn’t be new, as variety across weeks isn’t too great.

Friday- high day
12x35m Hill
6x6 Stiffness Jumps
Snatch from floor 6x5x55% (120 lbs)
Half Jump Squats 5x8x25% (Brenden did Trap Bar Deadlifts 4x8x205lbs)
Speed Overhead Press 5x8x25% (4x8x70% bench for Brenden)
BLFT 5x5

For the rest of the blog, OHT=Overhead Throw, OHBT=Overhead Back Throw, BLFT=Between Leg Forward Throw, SCT=Squat Chest Throw.

Anything that Brenden is doing is what anybody who hasn’t hit set strength per bodyweight maxes in the lifts. So in truth, my lifting is way different than most.

7x150m @23-24s with 3’ rest.
Bodybuilding Circuit B 2x10
Bardfoot Circuit 2

Saturday was fun, I got to run on my high school’s brand new track when I was home. I’m glad the tempo is feeling good, as I’m looking to just run a few sprint races this year just to end my career with decent PR’s. Since these are supposed to be near 70-75%, I’m glad they feel so smooth, and I’m starting to feel really comfortable over an extended distance (compared to 30 meters of acceleration).


Monday-High Day

4x20m, 4x30m, 4x40m all from Blocks
Saturn x3
Clean from floor 6x4x60% (145lbs)
Lunge Jumps 5x8x30% of bodyweight (20 lb dumbells) (Brenden Front Squat 4x8x70% (135))
Speed Incline Press 5x6x25% (50lbs) (Brenden Dumbell Incline Bench 4x8 with 55 pounders)
Pullups 4x8
OHT 5x5

The acceleration sprints today were really freaking solid. Being able to come out of the blocks just ups the intensity, and also puts us in the best position to accelerate. This was the 7th week of training, and the first time we see blocks. It was great to have them, as it makes accelerating on the runway so much smoother because once you go from block starts to a rollover start, it feels easier.

Everything else was average today, nothing spectacular happened, aside from a time during Saturn where I had a little PR in one of the bounds. Next week is testing, and I’m very excited once that comes.


Long Jump Technique
Taurus 20/40 Scramble Circuit
AB Circuit 30/30
Bodybuilding A 2x10
Barefoot Circuit 1

So yesterday was the first day of any jumping technique of the year and as always, that’s exciting. For the first day of the year, what we do are short approach long jumps from 6 steps (3 rights/lefts). Yesterday the focus was simply running in with high hips and smoothly transitioning into the jump. At the beginning we’re just trying to get real basics down and get the feel again.

There are several reasons that we use short approach jumps in practice as opposed to competition length approaches. In no particular order: 1) it is impossible to replicate meet intensity in practice, so doing meet length approaches will create a bad habit of thinking of meet intensity as the 95-98% you get in practice. 2) longer approaches take more juice out of you, and so doing shorter approaches allows you to get more repetitions in. Repetition is key for learning, for instance we got in more than 20 long jumps yesterday. 3) With shorter approaches, you are moving slower, and therefore in better control of your body. When you have better control of yourself, it is easier to make technical changes and corrections.

The practice went really well, I was able to iron out an issue that I had with bounding into my penultimate (2nd to last) step and work on keeping my shoulders relaxed. Brenden worked on keeping his hips very tall, as he tends to get squatty towards the board.


Stadium Singles x12
Venus, Mars 15/30
Jerk 6x4x60% 145 lbs
Split Squat 4x8x70% 175lbs (Brenden 4x8x70% Pause Front Squats 135lbs)
Speed Half Incline Press 5x8x25% 45lbs (Brenden 4x8x70% Pause Incline Bench 125lbs)
Upright Rows 4x8 (Brenden Pause Pullups 4x8)
SCT 5x5

Stadium Singles again are out on the bleachers, trying to keep hips tall and hit every stair with a perpendicular shin to introduce maximum velocity mechanics.

Venus and Mars are in place Multi Jump Circuits. Tuck Jumps, Buttkick Jumps, Squat Jumps, etc.

Jerk is also known as push press, it’s explosively moving a bar from racked on your chest to overhead, and involves much more legs than arms. No way on earth could I press 145 lbs with my arms. Split Squat is legs spread forward/back and dipping down into a kind of half lunge position. SCT is Squat Chest Throw

You may be wondering why there are so many pause lifts for Brenden. It is because the eccentric/isometric part of athletics is one that is often neglected. Eccentric is the lowering part of a lift, or also known as being able to accept force. In the jumps especially, it is probably even more important to be able to accept force than produce it. Pause lifts really hammer away at the Eccentric Portion of the spectrum. The reason we do it so early in the year, is they are relatively dis-coordinating and hard on the body, so the farthest away from any competition is the best.


I really hope that you guys will ask questions when you have any, and I hope that those simply reading are learning and enjoying.


One last thing, as it’s no secret that I use a lot of Boo’s stuff, here is a link to his training inventory. Almost every circuit I do is from this, so it will give you guys more detail about any circuit that I list.