Lernen vom Froschspringer und von der Gräfin
- Posted by Alice Rombach
- On 14. January 2023
Probably very few people know the name Jan Böklov. That doesn't matter, he probably wouldn't have cared that much himself, and that's not necessarily what this is about. It's about how Böklov first became a frog-jumper by mistake and then a rule-breaker by conviction. Just like the countess who flew through the air and many women after her. And what we can learn from that.
Ski jumpers used to hold their skis parallel while jumping off the hill. On the one hand, it was thought to be safer for the flight, on the other hand, there were aesthetic reasons for it. If the skis did not lie accurately next to each other in the air, points were deducted.
Suddenly his skis were ripped wide apart. He jumped 20 meters further than ever before. Today we know that the lift in the air doubles in this so-called V-posture. However, in this posture - compared to the old technique - the jumpers had to virtually initiate a forward somersault and jump into nothingness, so to speak.
Böklov, an already stubborn but also probably unimpressive young Swede, and a rather mediocre jumper, now dared to use his new jumping technique in competition. It was not forbidden, but the judges punished him with a severe deduction of points in the posture scores. In addition, he was showered with scorn. Even stadium announcers announced him as a frog jumper and many other athletes laughed at him. Apparently Böklov did not care.
He continued to jump undeterred and others began to follow him in the new technique. He had his few years at the top and also his little revolution. He gave birth to a new technique. This eventually established itself within a few years, similar to the Fosbury flop in the high jump.
When the countess flew through the air
Countess Paula von Lamberg jumped 22 metres, one of the first known female ski jumpers. That was in 1911, and there were, and still are, a great many women who jumped from the ski jumps after her.
Although they often trained with the men, they were not infrequently excluded from competitions, especially since women's own competitions were rarely organized.
But the female ski jumpers did not let themselves be stopped, even though there were few competitions and there were repeated quarrels about hill sizes, inrun lengths, and risks of injury. All in all, the usual struggles on the way to the professionalization of a sport - under the special sign of the "other sex".
After all, there have been women's ski jumping World Championships and Olympic Games for some years now.
I say - girls, keep jumping, jump as far as you can and even further, and bring your little sisters and girlfriends with you and everyone else anyway! And rock a Four Hills Tournament in the future. Because this one is still to come. -
Learn from the rule breakers
And let's think about what we can learn from these ski jumpers and from a guy like Böklov. I think quite a lot.
Often it's worth taking a look at the past.
I took ski jumping as an example of something very important here, to show that something we see as a limit is not as fixed or as given as it seems.
Just like the frog-jumper and the countess who flew through the air.