Hurdles – Buyer’s Guide

Hurdles in Track & Field can be categorised into 3 different types.

  • Competition Hurdles
  • Training Hurdles
  • Schools Hurdles

It is the training hurdles and schools hurdles that help develop the technique for jumping hurdles. The early stages of most athlete’s careers usually start at school during a PE lesson. At first, the idea of jumping over a series of hurdles in a race can be quite daunting and there can be a fear of injury if a jump over a hurdle fails.

Because of this, we recommend that schools use a dedicated ‘Schools Hurdle’. Made from lightweight aluminium and available in Junior and Senior sizes, both height adjustable as well to meet the age of the likely users, these hurdles ‘tip’ with relative ease to ensure the risk of injury is minimised plus the small pain that may be caused when connecting with a hurdle is highly reduced. This in turn will improve an athlete’s confidence when jumping hurdles and the coach or teacher can start to work on an athlete’s technique and speed.

As part of this technique improvement, a better quality of training hurdle is required usually now at an athletics track. In particular, the material of the hurdle is changed from aluminium to steel which increases the overall weight of the hurdle, particularly in the horizontal legs. Again available in junior and senior sizes, both height adjustable as well to meet the age of the likely users, but in contrast to the schools hurdle, the steel training hurdles doesn’t tip as easy bridging the gap to a full competition hurdle which is the next/highest level or progression.

Which Competition Hurdles To Buy?

Almost every Athletics facility in the UK will have a ‘flight’ of Hurdles that are used for competitions. Competition hurdles have a minimum specification that is regulated by the IAAF and the UKA. Each hurdle must be height adjustable to the specified heights, and have an adjustable weight in each leg to ensure a specified ‘toppling’ weight is met at each of the heights. Stadia Sports offers 4 different options of competition hurdles.

The first in our range having been the most popular for several years now is the ARH Olympic Hurdle. The hurdle is adjusted in height by a spring clip also known as a button clip on each vertical leg. The adjustable weight is also easily changed using a ‘pull out’ handle on each horizontal leg. This type of configuration is the most popular type used worldwide. The ARH Olympic hurdle is widely considered of the best build quality in the UK and it is common for these hurdles to last for many seasons as long as they’re maintained correctly. The ARH Olympic Hurdle complies with both IAAF and UKA regulations.

The next 3 hurdles in our range are from Nordic Sport starting with the Nordic Viking II hurdle. This hurdle is very similar is style to the ARH Olympic hurdle with some minor differences such as the base is fixed to the vertical legs. However, the Viking II is IAAF certified. The 2nd hurdle from Nordic Sport is a slight upgrade on the Viking II known as the Nordic Alu-Elite hurdle. The Alu-Elite hurdle is both easily dismantled so less storage room is required plus the adjustable weight can be changed with a person foot to eliminate the need to bend down on every hurdle. The third option from Nordic is the ‘top of the range’ Alu-Matic hurdle. The internal workings of the hurdle allow the height and adjustable weight to be changed simultaneously from a standing position in one movement. Considering most tracks will be using 80 hurdles at any one time, the speed at which the hurdles can be changed for a different level of race is dramatically reduced. This is particularly of benefit for televised events when time is of the essence. All 3 of the Nordic hurdles are IAAF