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Hurdle Drills

Hurdling Drills (General)
33 & 39 Hurdles

Hurdle Drills:

Hurdling on the ground: 

  • Hurdling arm and body action while in seated
  • postion and alternating legs for each two hurdles. 
  • if you can't do this you can't Hurdle.

Wall Drill every day

  • Mark on a wall or fence the hight of a hurdle, can use a hurdle
  • Practice driving up and over the mark using correct take-off form.

Standing Trail Leg Drill: 

  • Lean against wall and bring the trail leg (from the
  • side of the hurdle) over the hurdle and to the ground

Standing Trail Leg Drill Center: 

  • Lean against wall and bring the trail leg
  • (backward and forward over the center of the hurdle) over the hurdle and to the round.


  • Fast leg leg or trail leg over 4 hurdles set 3 steps apart.

Rhythm Drill: 
Hurdle modeling -  

  • (using baby steps) 8 steps to the first,
  • hurdle by bringing lead knee up to the chest and back down quickly (bent leg),
  • and the trail leg up to the chest and back down quickly (bent leg),
  • 3 steps, repeat hurdling, 3 steps, hurdling,etc.  - 
  • Repeat as many flights as desired, but always finish with 10 step to the finish. (simulates sprinting through the finish)
  • a - Without the hurdles
  • b - With short barriers
  • c - increase barier height

Hurdling Drills (High Hurdles)
Also Good for 33 Hurdles

Contributed by John Raffensperger  Contact John with questions at: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it
The following things to consider when Hurdling and doing Drills
Heel to butt as tight as possible
Drive with knee not foot
Don?t over emphasize snapdown (may cause trail leg to hit Hurdle).

Reading your watch
Rotate thumb down to keep elbows outside of wrists.
Swim action as trail leg comes through (or) think pulling open a door.
Think leading with head ,shoulders or elbow, NOT arm.
Sitting arm action drills (isolate)

Keep elbow outside of wrist hand close to the body
Think hard upper cut, after trail leg passes

Pull thru to chest and into the direction of the run.
Heel to butt for faster rotation- toe everted.
Pull trail leg KNEE toward next hurdle.
DON?T reach with the leg to the next hurdle Think KNEE.
Do wall drills & Partner resister drills.
5yd apart and 3 step drills and 5 steppers over the side.

Never let the foot get ahead of the hips on the landing.
Push the toe on the accelerator.
Keep the chin on or over the knee, keep the forward LEAN
Think of a PAWING action on your way to the next hurdle.

Trail leg Drill
Start with 3 Hurdles in early season and
increase number up to 5 or 6 as season progresses
Set hurdles at 4 yds. Start 3-4 strides before first hurdle
Take 1 stride between

Lead leg Drill
Same as trail leg drill.
Don?t let Hurdler drag trail leg.

Balance Drill (Stanford Drill)
Set Hurdles at 5 yd distance Start with LH or 15? then 36? and finally 39?
3 steps between hurdles run with arms parallel to track at all times.
(extended arms force take off leg to provide all the thrust over the hurdle, force hurdler to lead with knee and keeps hurdler from twisting in hurdle clearance.)

Momentum Drill (Early season)
Start with LH/IH height. 4 yd between. Start 3-4 stride before 1st hurdle.
Take 1 stride between hurdle Idea is to accelerate and step over the Hurdle as fast as possible getting fastest tempo at last Hurdle.
Run 4-5 H in early season work toward 10 at end.
Is strength builder and forces lead knee to provide thrust. (Can also be used as Trail leg drill)

Speed Drills
8 1/2 drill over 4 Hurdles to 6 or 7 Set hurdles at 8 1/2 yds and 3 step
8 1/2 drill over full flight x 2-3 (late season)
8 1/2 drill up and down x 3-4 Set 5,6 or 7 Hurdles at 81/2 going both ways.
Leave lane between.
No recovery between each trip up/back.

Speed Drills
8 1/2 drill over last 4 Hurdle x 3-4 (run full 110)

1-3 5 sprint Hurdle Drill
use 7 sprint strides between Hurdle Set #3 Hurdle 3 ft closer to #1 and set #5 Hurdle 8 ft closer to #1.

12 yd Drill Over 4-6 Hurdles
5 step between (easy, easy ,fast, fast ,fast)

Starts over 3 Hurdles
Make sure these are not always taken with trailing wind.
Make sure hurdler runs 60-80 meters off 3rd Hurdle.

10 step to 1st Hurdle Drill
start 16.5 m from first Hurdle.(2.78m back of starting line)
Purpose to increase velocity over Hurdle # 2-3-4 or more.

Condition Hurdles 11-12 Hurdles
Set 11-12 yds apart 5 step 2-5 sets

5 yard Drill
Set Hurdles at 5 yds, use 3 steps. (Very good for lead leg)

Wall Drill (lead leg)
stand 4-5 ft from wall with short box between athlete and wall.. .
Drive lead leg forward and lean so you end up with the foot against the wall.
The box will not allow Hurdler to straight leg his approach.

12?-15? Hurdle Drill
10-15 reps every other practice all season. (Good for all sprinters)

Jamming Drill
Move Hurdles 1? closer for each hurdle.
Keep Hurdle #1 at same place.
Move #2 1? closer,
#3 2? closer
#4 3? closer etc.
Forces Hurdler to get lead leg down and get better turn over.
Also helps Hurdler who has trouble getting 3 steps.

Up Backs
5 Hurdles in each direction Have Hurdler do lead, trail and over the top with a 5 step.
Rest 90 sec. And repeat x 5

Chase Drill
3 Hurdlers in blocks.
One starts when he says GO and the others must chase and try to keep form.
Over 2 0r 3 Hurdles.

5 x 5 Hurdles @ 8.5 meters 3 x 2 @ normal
Helps get lead leg up quicker
Helps when a tail wind pushes them closer to Hurdle in a meet.

1 x 10 at 39? (rest 10 min.)
2 x 6 at 36? 2 x 3 @ 33? ( For speed development)
(Late season)
1 x 10 @36?
1x10 @ 36
1 x 10 @ 36? (Rest 10 min between each. Also time each and record)
(Good Monday workout)

To Gain Velocity
Start 16.5 meters from 1st Hurdle
55m over hurdles and sprint the remaining distance
(Good recovery rest 10-12 min.)

Speed Between Drill
Use only Hurdles #1,3,5 .
1st Hurdle at regular spot,
#3 set 4? closer to 1st,
#5 is 8? closer to 1st.( Builds speed between.)

14 Hurdle Drill
Set 14 Hurdles 8-10 yds apart.
3 step 4-5 times.
Walk back

Endurance Drill
8 Hurdles at regular.
Sprint 60 meters off #8 (Early Season)

Increase Speed/Stride
6 Hurdles.
Add 3 meters between 6 x 6 (Helps speed)

Trail Leg w/partner
Partner holds foot and knee and PUSH it thru to front of hurdle.
(Helps strengthen hip muscles)
Part of warm ups early season.

Partner Trail leg
Athlete leans against a wall with trail leg back.
Partner gives resistance to trail leg pulling through then pushes knee all the way to the front.

Sets of different Hurdles.
Ex. 2 x (3-5-7)

One Step Drill (Lead leg)
6-8 Hurdles approx 7-10? apart.
Must bring lead foot down, take one stride,
then take off over next hurdle.
5-7 times.

Good Monday Drill (from blocks)
5 x 1 hurdle,
4 x 2, over 3 hurdles until a noticeable loss of form.
End workout with fast 300 and time it ..

5 x 5 Hurdles for time Walk right back and repeat.
Finish with 3-5 x 150 sprint.

Sprint/No Hurdles
10 x 110 on straight top speed.
Walk full curve after typical Hurdle warm up.
Good warm down.

Sprint/No Hurdles
5 x 150 on straight walk right back and repeat.

Sprint/No Hurdles
2 x 50 high knee
2 x 20 Butt kicks
2 x 30 A-skip