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Coming Back to Jump, A Masters View (Mar 14 2010, 07:42 AM)
My First Attempt... (Dec 15 2009, 04:39 AM)
This year is not over! (Jul 10 2009, 08:02 PM)
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hey usa guys.... come and join europe (Jun 23 2009, 06:12 PM)
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My First Attempt...

Published by
jkipf84   on Dec 15 2009, 04:39 AM

Hey All,

This is my first attempt at this blog thing - mainly looking to share some of my experiences with other jumpers out there and looking get some feedback as well. But, before I begin, I'd just like to say hats off to Adam Shunk and Jesse Williams for putting together the USA Jumper site - it is awesome to get all the jumpers out there together in one place. That being said, I figure I'll just give ya'll some background and a quick status of where I am at right now with training...

I started high jumping halfway through my freshman year of high school. My coach thought it would be a good idea for me try the event because of my build so I listened - the other team's high jumper gave me a quick how-to and I have been jumping ever since. That first year I had a PR of, I'm embarassed to admit it, 5'6. I finished the season not really thinking much about the event, but kept my curiosity through my football and basketball seasons the following year. So, by the time track finally rolled around, I gave high jump another shot and was able to boost my PR up to 6'4 during my Sophomore campaign. That basically was what got me thinking I could do something in the event, even though I actually cared more about the hurdles and 800 (weird mix, I know). My following 2 years I didn't improve as much as I would have liked, but I basically graduated high school clearing 6'6 on 5 different occasions between my Junior and Senior years. That combined with moderate success in the 110m hurdles (14.9 PR) and 1600 relay (52 flat split) made me a multi-event prospect and gave me an opportunity to compete in college. Cue the University of Michigan.

I entered U of M in the fall of 2005 and began my training as a multi-event athlete. Things were going great until mid-November that year, when it seemed my body started falling apart. Long story short, I had around 50% of my patellar tendon that tore away from my Tibia that fall which required a major surgery in April of the following year (that long delay is another story in itself). After 8 months of rehab, I started back into training after a redshirt my freshman year. Progress was very slow, and after a few months of getting back in the multi-events, I competed my first time for the University of Michigan in January 2007 at Central Michigan - high jumping 6'. Yes, 6'. Thought my collegiate track career was over before it even started. But a lot of persistence in the weightroom and on the track allowed me to jump a new PR in March of that year - 2.03m. I went into summer finally feeling back on track. Things really started coming back to me and I was back in the throes of decathlon that Fall. This time I made it through the fall relatively healthy, but suffered a groin/hip flexor strain that took me out of the multi-events for good late in December of 2007. I took a few weeks off completely, let myself heal a bit, then came back in January to jump a huge PR in my first meet - 2.09m. I carried that momentum into the following weekend's dual meet with Ohio State and had another huge PR - 2.15m. A return of the groin injury came back in the following weeks and plagued me a bit for the rest of the season, but I was still able to medal in the Big 10 Outdoor meet and qualify for Regionals. I entered that summer/fall on a high note and was really expecting good things while training specifically for the high jump. Unfortunately, things didn't work out well and my other knee started giving me problems. It was found out late in the fall semester that I had a small tear in my patellar tendon and it was causing me some serious issues, but I would try to gut it out through the '09 Indoor season. Needless to say, things never really worked out for me in my Junior season, but I decided to have a small procedure done on my knee, forgo my Outdoor season, and I would try to come back and compete my Senior year... And that's where I am now.

I have spent the summer/fall in the weightroom trying to get my strength levels back. So far, things have been going well. Just started a testing week and then will take some time off to recover a bit and start the competition at Eastern Michigan on January 9th!

I'll update the results of my testing week soon and talk some about the training I've doing. Peace!

-John

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