From Academic Kids
The triple jump is an athletics (track and field) event, previously also known as "hop, step and jump", whose various names describe the actions a competitor takes. The athlete runs down a runway until he reaches a designated mark, from which the jump is measured. The takeoff mark is a board, and in modern championships a strip of plasticine is attached to the board to record athletes overstepping the mark. The first landing has to be done with the takeoff foot. The next phase is a step, landing on the opposite foot, and is followed by the jump, into a sand-filled box, as in the long jump. A "foul" or missed jump occurs when a jumper oversteppes the launch mark (most commonly), misses the pit entirely, or does not perform the attempt in the alloted amount of time (usually about one minute).
The triple jump has been included in the modern Olympic Games since its first celebration in 1896. In fact, the first modern Olympic Champion, James Connolly, was a triple jumper, however, the event at this time consisted of two hops and a jump. In 1996, a triple jump event for women was added to the Olympics, having already been included in both the Outdoor World Championships and World Indoor Championships.
The current male and female world record holders are Jonathan Edwards of the UK, with a jump of 18.29 metres (G?org, August 7, 1995) and Inessa Kravets of Ukraine with a jump of 15.50 metres (G?org, August 10, 1995). The men's world indoor record is shared by Aliecer Urrutia of Cuba and Christian Olsson of Sweden with a mark of 17.83 metres. The women's world indoor record measures 15.36 metres, jumped by Tatyana Lebedeva of Russia at the 2004 IAAF World Indoor Championships.
Other famous triple jumpers: