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Richard Douglas Fosbury - Famous Athlete

Full Name: Richard Douglas Fosbury; known as Dick Fosbury

Date of Birth: 6 th March, 1947

Country: The United States of America

Sport involved in: Athletics

Achievements made:

•  Winner of the NCAA title in 1968

•  Gold medalist in the high jump event at the 1968 Mexico City Summer Games

•  Setter of Olympic record in the high jump event

Career: Richard Douglas Fosbury is the high jumper from the United States of America. He revolutionized the athletic event by inventing a new back-first jumping technique. This technique has been named after Fosbury as “Fosbury Flop”. At the age of 16, Fosbury started doing experiments with the jumping techniques. The standard jumping techniques like the “Eastern Cut Off”, the “Straddle” and the “Scissors” were very complicated for him. So he started practicing a new technique. His method was to sprint diagonally towards the bar, then curve and leap backwards over the bar. In 1968, Fosbury won the NCAA title using his new back-first technique. In the 1968 Mexico City Summer Games , he won gold medal in the high jump competition. His high jump technique was immediately popular and named the “Fosbury Flop”. The Fosbury Flop became a standard technique for high jumpers.

Performance at the Olympics: Richard Douglas Fosbury appeared at the stage of international high jump in the 1968 Mexico City Summer Games . In those days, the technique used by the high jumpers was different from Fosbury's technique. Generally the jumpers took their inside foot off the ground at the time of jumping. On the other hand, Fosbury took off from his outside foot. Then he twisted his body and bend over the bar with his back first. With this new technique, Fosbury reached a height of 2.24 meter and own the Olympic title in the event. The height jumped by Fosbury was his personal best and a new Olympic record