Part of our young athlete series, we hear from a national high jump champion who would love to be a top decathlete
Adam Jones won English Schools and England Athletics under-15 high jump titles last year, but his proudest moment of 2013 was when he represented England in the pentathlon at the SIAB Schools International.
“I was pretty much hyped for weeks when I earned a spot in the England team,” the 15-year-old Southampton athlete says. “But by the time it got to competing in Glasgow, it was more chilled than that.
“The nerves from the day before had settled and it was just a case of doing what happens in most competitions. I’m glad I’ve got the experience behind me, as it was a great atmosphere.”
Adam was fifth with a PB of 3039 and is looking forward to stepping up to the octathlon this year.
“Combined events is better because you have other things to rely on if one event has a bad day”
“I will do less event-specific training and condition myself for next summer, as it is going to be hard with the extra events and the move-up in age group.”
Despite ending 2013 as the top-ranked under-15 high jumper in the UK with 1.93m and opening the new year with the same mark indoors, he prefers combined events.
“Combined events are always better, because you always have other things to rely on if one event is having a bad day,” he says.
The Wildern School year 10 student adds: “If I had specialised too early I probably wouldn’t have gone to English Schools for high jump, as last year long jump was my strongest event. This is why you shouldn’t confine yourself to one event when you’re young, because you never know how well you could have done at anything else.
“It is also way more fun doing all the events than just doing one event the whole time. My full respect goes to anyone who can keep going at multi-events and do the full decathlon, as it is hard.”
Adam has increased his training this winter under the guidance of coach Erik Little. “I don’t think there is a better coach around!” he says.
It’s not all athletics for Adam though, as he continues: “I want to do as well as I can in my GCSEs, but at the moment I just do everything that I can after school.
“My main focus is athletics, but I also play the guitar and like spending time with my friends in the holidays.”
You can find further performance stats on Adam on Power of 10 here.
» Support junior athletics via the Ron Pickering Memorial Fund, see rpmf.org.uk