Basics of hurdling

Hurdling is an exciting and challenging event in athletics that requires a combination of speed, strength, and technique. It involves running and jumping over a series of hurdles set at specific distances, heights, and spacings.

In this article, we’ll cover some of the key elements of hurdling technique, as well as some training tips to help you get the most out of your hurdling workouts.


The approach is the first step in hurdling, and it’s essential to get it right. Your approach should be smooth, controlled, and consistent, with your steps timed to build momentum and speed. As you approach the first hurdle, you should aim to take off with your dominant leg, keeping your other leg up and over the hurdle.

Stride Pattern

The stride pattern is the sequence of steps you take between each hurdle. It’s important to establish a consistent stride pattern that works best for you and allows you to maintain your speed and rhythm throughout the race. Most hurdlers use a 3-step or 4-step pattern, depending on their height and stride length.

Clearing the Hurdles

Clearing the hurdles requires a combination of speed, power, and technique. You should aim to jump over the hurdle with your lead leg, while bringing your trail leg up and over the hurdle as well. It’s important to maintain your balance and posture while in the air, keeping your eyes focused on the next hurdle and aiming to land on the balls of your feet.


Rhythm is essential to successful hurdling, as it allows you to maintain your speed and momentum throughout the race. You should aim to establish a consistent rhythm from the start of the race, with your steps timed to coincide with the hurdles. Maintaining your speed and rhythm can also help you conserve energy and avoid fatigue towards the end of the race.

Training Tips

To improve your hurdling technique and performance, it’s important to incorporate specific hurdling drills into your training regimen. These can include drills such as hurdle hops, box jumps, and plyometric exercises, which can help to improve your explosive power and technique.

In addition to these drills, strength training can also be beneficial for improving hurdling performance. Exercises such as squats, lunges, and deadlifts can help to develop the strength and power needed for hurdling.

Finally, it’s important to maintain proper recovery practices to avoid injury and allow your body to fully recover between workouts. Make sure to incorporate stretching, foam rolling, and rest days into your training regimen, and listen to your body to avoid overtraining.


Hurdling is a challenging and rewarding event in athletics that requires a combination of speed, power, and technique. By focusing on elements such as the approach, stride pattern, clearing the hurdles, and training tips, you can develop the skills and strength needed to become a successful hurdler.