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Posts Tagged ‘Long Jump World Record’

On the 18th of October 1968, at the Mexico Olympics, Bob Beamon stunned the athletics world. In the final of the long jump competition he leapt 8.90 metres (29 feet 2.5 inches). This completely destroyed the previous World record of 8.35 metres by 55cm (21.75 inches)! The 2nd place went to Klaus Beer of East Germany with a jump of 8.19m.

It had taken 61 years for the World record to advance by 55cm to the 8.35 metre record that Beamon shattered, and in the previous 10 years the record had advanced by only 14cm.

I honestly am not sure whether I remember this feat or not. I was 4 and 1/2 at the time, but I do know the Olympics was on all the time in our house, and I have a vague recollection of my father getting very excited about an amazing record being set by someone who had just jumped a very long way 🙂


Bob Beamon at the 1968 Mexico Olympics, shattering the World record.


Prior to Mexico, Beamon himself had not jumped further than 8.33 metres (27 feet 4 inches). The previous Olympics in Tokyo in 1964 had been won by Welshman Lynn Davies with a leap of 8.07 metres. Here is footage of Bob Beamon’s World record leap.



This incredible World record stood for 23 years, until Mike Powell broke it in 1991 with a leap of 8.95 metres at the IAAF World Championships in Tokyo.


Mike Powell, who broke Bob Beamon’s 1968 World record at the IAAF World Championships in 1991 with a leap of 8.95 metres.


Here is a video of Mike Powell breaking Beamon’s record at that championships in Tokyo.



The progress of the long jump World record


The progress of the long jump World Record
Distance Athlete Venue Date
7.61 m (24 ft 11 5⁄8 in) Peter O’Connor (Ireland) Dublin 1901-08-05
7.69 m (25 ft 2 3⁄4 in) Edward Gourdin (USA) Cambridge 1923-07-23
7.76 m (25 ft 5 1⁄2 in) Robert LeGendre (USA) Paris 1924-07-07
7.89 m (25 ft 10 5⁄8 in) DeHart Hubbard (USA) Chicago 1925-06-13
7.90 m (25 ft 11 in) Edward Hamm (USA) Cambridge 1928-07-07
7.93 m (26 ft 3⁄16 in) Sylvio Cator (HAI) Paris 1928-09-09
7.98 m (26 ft 2 3⁄16 in) Chuhei Nambu (JPN) Tokyo 1931-10-27
8.13 m (26 ft 8 1⁄16 in) Jesse Owens (USA) Ann Arbor 1935-05-25
8.21 m (26 ft 11 1⁄4 in) Ralph Boston (USA) Walnut 1960-08-12
8.24 m (27 ft 7⁄16 in) Ralph Boston (USA) Modesto 1961-05-27
8.28 m (27 ft 2 in) Ralph Boston (USA) Moscow 1961-07-16
8.31 m (27 ft 3 3⁄16 in) Igor Ter-Ovanesyan (URS) Yerevan 1962-06-10
8.31 m (27 ft 3 3⁄16 in) Ralph Boston (USA) Kingston 1964-08-15
8.34 m (27 ft 4 3⁄8 in) Ralph Boston (USA) Los Angeles 1964-09-12
8.35 m (27 ft 4 3⁄4 in) Ralph Boston (USA) Modesto 1965-05-29
8.35 m (27 ft 4 3⁄4 in) Igor Ter-Ovanesyan (URS) Mexico City 1967-10-19
8.90 m (29 ft 2 3⁄8 in) Bob Beamon (USA) Mexico City 1968-10-18
8.95 m (29 ft 4 3⁄8 in) Mike Powell (USA) Tokyo 1991-08-30
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