Introduction: How to Jump Over a Fence

I joined the Marines once.
I was hoping they would brainwash me and make everything simple.
Unfortunately their methods don't work on everyone.
They told us "You could be the next Presley O'Bannion!" (He attacked "The shores of Tripoli" in the song "The Marine Hymn.")
and "A Marine doing his job in lives an average of fifteen minutes!""
Hearing that we all barked like dogs as loud as we could because we were Gung Ho.
One of our drills was running up a hill with our unloaded M16s yelling Bang! Bang! and pretending to shoot some bad guys in a little dirt fort at the top. Human wave tactics like this were why we'd die so quick if we ever got to do our jobs.

The M16 was a surprise. At the rifle range we had to put pieces of black tape over the charging handles to keep puffs of hot smoke from hitting us in the eye. That seemed like the worst possible design for a weapon you were supposed to hold steady and not flinch at all.

The workouts were really good. We ran back and forth to the PT (physical training) in formation. The warmups and warmdowns were so good that although I was totally exhausted every time, I never got sore. There was unlimited high protein food to eat in the "mess hall" but we only had fifteen minutes to wolf it down with two spoons. If anyone talked we'd be ordered to stand up and march out of the hall.
Between the good workouts and meaty food I got lots of big muscles.

The obstacle course was lots of fun. Among other things we learned the "High Vault" and "Low Vault" methods of fencejumping that are the subject of this article.

Excellent photos by theinfonaut Her nifty concept for this sequence of photos is that if you pass your mouse over the thumbnails above, they will appear to be animated.

Step 1: High Vault 01

Do the high vault if you're

Lightly loaded.
The fence isn't too high.
You're confident of the footing on the other side.
You're in a hurry.
You want to show off.

Trot up to the fence, put your hands on top and jump.

Step 2: High Vault 02

Your legs pass over the fence without touching it.
This is easier than it sounds because most of your weight is on your hands on the fence.
Your legs experience moon gravity and float right over if you do it right.
Your feet may snag the fence. If that happens the graceful fallback maneuver is to continue with the more sedate "low vault" procedure depicted in the other sequence.

Before my military training I used to try to jump a fence without putting my hands on it.
So when my feet tripped on the fence I landed face first in a pile of dog crap, badly hurting my neck so all my pain and embarassment nerves fired at once. I was trying to impress a girl of course. Unfortunately another swain had already stolen her heart. No doubt by diving into a latrine while running himself over with his own car.

Another male in my paternal line also suffered from a lack of military training. He won at tennis and did the traditional leap over the net to shake hands with the loser. Unfortunately he tripped, ripped the crotch of his pants open, threw his racket at the other guy breaking his nose, and landed wrong breaking his arm and getting a concussion.

Step 3: High Vault 03

The landing.

After you clear the fence take your hands off the fence and raise your arms. This decreases the "unsprung weight" of your human vehicle.

Bend your knees and land on your toes. This gives you a soft long-travel suspension.
As you land lower your upper body into a crouch so there's no major shock.
If it's a major drop you continue into a roll, but landing from a high fall should be a subject for a future sequence.

Step 4: Low Vault 01

Now you're tired,
heavily loaded,
unsure of the wall or the landing area on the other side,
not in a hurry
and careful.
You start by getting your weight up on the wall with your arms like this.

Step 5: Low Vault 02

Swing one leg up to the side like this.

Step 6: Low Vault 03

Pass the other leg under that one.

Step 7: Low Vault 04

And lower yourself to the ground on the other side.
You are over the fence. Proceed with your business.

Comments

author
TimothyW48 (author)2016-04-23

I'd just like to assure the author that Marine Corps training has vastly improved since he was in. Semper Fi!

author
hazode (author)2006-09-16

what if you were heavily loaded and were in a rush?

author
jokerlz (author)hazode2009-01-20

Grab something loading you, cut it in half, put the two halves together to make a hole, and then climb through that.

author
DEEJAY642 (author)jokerlz2016-04-23

oldest joke ever!!!

author
hockys1 (author)jokerlz2009-04-16

your so funny

author
zombiehunter96 (author)hazode2010-04-23

If the fence is weak....you run straight through it. If said fence is too strong, a large mount of explosives should do the job :)

author
DEEJAY642 (author)zombiehunter962016-04-23

hahahaha!!!! I love your perspective!!!!

author
mpitcher (author)hazode2010-02-10

run through it lol

author
DEEJAY642 (author)2016-04-23

The fastest and easiest way to know if you can jump a fence is when that's the only option apart from being savagely attacked! My friend and i both found that out the hard way. We were fishing in a creek maybe 100m from his house when out of nowhere two bulldogs came charging at us growling. We instantly turned and ran for our lives but there was a problem. They have a corrugated iron fence (very sharp) and there's this little gap in it that we used as a gate but only one person could get through at a time and it sometimes took a bit of a struggle. Well it turned out that my friend beat me to the gap leaving me no option to scale the tall and sharp fence!! I got over in time and landed safely on the other side but my hands were cut up quite a bit!

Now I look back at that fence and wonder how the hell I got over!!!

author
Plo Koon (author)2012-11-19

just have a charging rino in front of u at all times. problem solved

author
Martinmayhem (author)2011-06-19

What a stupid "How to" but brilliant!... unfortunately, I'm now too old and eaten too many pork Pies to go round jumping fences etc!!!
......Now 40 years ago this would have been indescribable!!!!

author
HiZpaniK90 (author)2009-07-13

its easier if ur spanish (i can say that since i am spanish)

author
edfel01 (author)2009-04-28

u trained to be a marine?

author
berky93 (author)2009-01-02

what?! no gate vault?! c'mon thats the best way hands down!

author
eagle-2 (author)2009-01-01

Thanks a lot man, very useful trick!

author
Undermig (author)2008-08-18

lol your old? and you are a boy...wearing flip flop?

author
dannyboy22 (author)2008-03-20

haha, jumping over a fence can be a pain. When I was younger it was always so easy, but now that im old its a bit harder for me. I tried to do some exercises to increase my jump actually. because I wanted to learn how to jump higherhow to jump higher so I would not have to climb fences.

I would like to just jump clear over a fence you know? I think the taller you are the harder that becomes, but this is cool :)

author
Noodle93 (author)2008-03-08

Parkour makes it easier :D.

author
BOOM5601 (author)2007-08-05

says: 1. Roll up to the fence. 2. Close your jaw and stick your chin into the fence. 3. Pull your self up a little by opening your mouth. 4. Stick your top front two teeth into the fence, take out your chin, and close your jaw as mauch as you can without taking out your teeth. 5. Repeat steps 2-4 until you reach the top. 6. When you reach the top stick your two front teeth on the top. 7. Keep swinging yourself (by bending your neck) until you have enough momentum to carry yourself over the fence, then let go. There is a risk you'll land on your head, snap your neck, and die. That should help you.

author
twenglish1 (author)BOOM56012008-03-01

i should try that jk lol

author
darthnilloc (author)BOOM56012008-03-01

you should make an Instructable about that

author

oh my word I'm crying I'm laughing so hard.

author
chalky (author)BOOM56012007-10-07

ROFL nice one BOOM5601,.

author
tipsychimp (author)BOOM56012007-08-06

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA and it would actually work too

author
duck-lemon (author)2008-02-10

nice threads

author
BuckyOHare (author)2008-01-17

That's no fence, it's a chicken coop.

author
Digital_Anarchy (author)2007-12-01

then attach a spring loaded lever to the bottom of your wheel chair

author
benhudson (author)2007-03-20

If you are lightly loaded, in a hurry and want to show off, you could always annoy your CO by doing a saut de chat.

author
PKM (author)benhudson2007-10-12

On a wire fence? No thanks- thief vault or dive roll all the way :)

author
benhudson (author)PKM2007-10-15

Ah, but it looks like a fairly steady fence :) Dive roll would indeed be better, but could potentially cause problems if you had a pack on. Mind you, anything above a small pack and you'd have trouble vaulting it at all. As for a thief vault, I've never heard of those :) Please elaborate. They sound fun. Chances are that I know it by a different name.

author
Jolleyman (author)benhudson2007-10-23

The "thief's vault" is very similar to Tim's "low vault" in form, however the exception is you do not touch the fence with your feet at all. I'd bet that if you searched youtube you would find a good example of it. It would be difficult to do on the example fence because of height, but if had good hand placement and momentum transfer then it could work

author
benhudson (author)Jolleyman2007-10-24

It's quite pretty. I shall have a go. Looks very similar to a speed vault but with a lazy vault ending. But nicer than both.

author
chalky (author)2007-10-07

can't you just use the gate like everyone else?? bloody god'dam fence hopping marines lol.

author
XCabooseO (author)2007-10-03

I'm a gymnast and as long as you have a good jump and don't do anything stupid (such as not letting go) you shouldn't have a very difficult time with either of these jumps...

author
themasterpyro (author)2007-09-06

why dont you post more of your training?that would be awsome!!

author
Whaleman (author)2007-08-30

Cool! I am gonna hop some fences tomorrow!

author
Whaleman (author)2007-08-30

then, hypothetically, why are you hopping a fence?

author
hippojoe (author)2007-07-26

I love the fact than you did this all in sandals!

author
andy60 (author)hippojoe2007-07-30

that in itself should be an instructable lol

author
hippojoe (author)andy602007-07-30

lol we should make a collaboration on how to do every day things in...........SANDALS!!!!!

author
racefanaz (author)2006-10-25

what a sissy boy, i am a former marine myself and ususally id just blow the fence, preferrably with a small tactical nuke placed by slacker

author
kurdtpage (author)racefanaz2006-11-13

Can you post pics?

author
Legend (author)kurdtpage2007-05-31

Lol

author
The_Doom_Bringer (author)2006-11-25

I'm still in the Marines, and the only wall crosing they taught us was the low silhouette version, but then again im a mechanic, I'd just smash through the wall with a truck

author
Shady357 (author)2006-11-09

This is the animatd version

wot..gif
author
_soapy_ (author)2006-11-02

Don't wory, I'm thinking of you right now, even if he didn't.

author
Jaleo (author)2006-10-12

there, this should make it clearer

jumpingman.jpg
author
Wonderground (author)2006-07-31

What about, big fences, the ones that are everywhere, scaling and that junk.

author

well i wrote a crappy instructable for that, "climbing dumars"

author

those are easy you just climb them spider man style you can jump the other side if its low enough or just do in step 5 and climb down (it helps if you have smaller feet for this my freind can climb the baseball cage things where the batter is)

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Bio: Tim Anderson is the author of the "Heirloom Technology" column in Make Magazine. He is co-founder of www.zcorp.com, manufacturers of "3D Printer" output ... More »
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