Athletics

Athletics Stats: Greatest Men Long Jumpers of all time

The long jump is a sport that requires starting off sprinting and then leaping as far as you can into a pit of sand. Since the first modern Olympics in 1896, this competition has been a feature of the Olympic Games. The long jump has its roots in ancient Greece when it was a part of the ancient Olympic Games. It belonged to the pentathlon competitions and was known as the “halma.” In order to jump higher, ancient athletes utilized weights or halteres. The halteres, which were composed of stone, bronze, or lead, were gripped in each hand to impart momentum to the jump.

With the invention of rubber-soled shoes in the middle of the 19th century, the long leap acquired popularity in the modern period. Athletes were able to jump higher and with better traction as a consequence. Long jumps are currently executed using a run-up, take-off, flight through the air, and sand pit touchdown as the landing region. The athlete’s body portion which has touched the closest place in the sand closest to the take-off board is used for calculating the distance. Hence, the sport has changed over time as athletes have created new training routines and approaches.

Read More- Athletics stats: Men’s Long Jump World Record and its Progression over the Years

Greatest Men Long Jumpers of all time

The sporting world has witnessed many long jumpers who have established themselves as some of the greatest athletes of all time. However, in the men’s long jump competition, Mike Powell, Bob Beamon, Carl Lewis, and Ralph Boston made a name for themselves like nobody else. Each of these athletes has achieved something which is extraordinary and difficult to accomplish.

Out of these four athletes, Mike Powell is the long jumper who presently holds the world record, even after almost 31 years. He established the record at the World Athletics Championships in 1991 with a mammoth jump of 8.95 meters. In the same event, another legendary athlete Carl Lewis set a personal best of 8.91 (another huge jump) to win the silver medal. 

However, since the jump was wind-assisted, it wasn’t considered the second-best jump. Although Carl Lewis doesn’t own the best jump of all time in the sport, he is considered one of the most legendary athletes of all time. This is owing to his rich medal haul at the Olympics (nine gold and one silver) and World Championships (eight gold, one silver, and one bronze). 

Another athlete who has made the list is Bob Beamon. He recorded a gigantic leap of 8.90 meters at the 1968 Olympic Games which stood for 23 years. In those days, a performance of that incredible level was simply exemplary. The last athlete on our list is none other than Ralph Boston. Although Ralph Boston doesn’t have a big jump added to his feat, he has smashed the world record on five occasions, the most by any athlete. 

AthleteCountryPersonal BestMajor Wins in Long Jump
Carl LewisUnited States of America8.91 m (Wind assisted)Olympic Games – Gold in 1984, 1988, 1992, 1996; World Championships – Gold in 1983, 1987, Silver in 1991
Michael Anthony Powell (Mike Powell)United States of America8.95 mOlympic Games – Silver in 1988 and 1992; World Championships – Gold in 1991 and 1993 and Bronze in 1995
Bob BeamonUnited States of America8.90 mOlympic Games – Gold in 1968; Pan American Games – Silver in 1967
Ralph BostonUnited States of America8.35 mOlympic Games – Gold in 1960, Silver in 1964, Bronze in 1968; Pan American Games – Gold in 1963 and 1967

(Note- This list is based on the athletes performance at the most prestigious events which includes the Olympics and World Championships. It also comprises the number of times the athletes have shattered the world record.)

More Athletics stats-
1) Athletics: Greatest Women High Jumpers of All time
2) Athletics Stats: Women’s 3000m Steeplechase winners at the World Championships
3) Athletics stats: Men’s Long Jump World Record and its Progression over the Years
4) Athletics Stats: Gold medalists from USA in the 100m sprint in Summer Olympics