Zhu Jianhua (simplified Chinese: 朱建华; traditional Chinese: 朱建華; pinyin: Zhū Jiànhuá; born 29 May 1963) is a retired Chinese high jumper. His personal best of 2.39 metres is a former world record for the event.

Zhu Jianhua
Personal information
Native name朱建华
Born (1963-05-29) 29 May 1963 (age 56)
Height1.93 m (6 ft 4 in)
Weight70 kg (154 lb)
Event(s)High jump
Achievements and titles
Personal best(s)2.39 m

In Helsinki 1983, Zhu became China's first man to win a medal in the IAAF World Championships. In the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, he became the first male from the People's Republic of China to win an athletics medal in the history of the Olympic Games (Yang Chuan-kwang won a silver medal representing the Republic of China in the 1960 Rome Olympics).[1] He is a two-time gold medallist at both the Asian Games and the Asian Athletics Championships.


Dominating Asian high jumping in the early 1980s, Zhu won the Asian Championships in 1981, crushing the championship record by 15 centimetres. He repeated this at the 1982 Asian Games with a jump of 2.33 m, beating the previous games record by 12 cm. He retained his title in the 1986 Asian Games.

At the inaugural World Championships in 1983 and the 1984 Summer Olympics he competed against the world elite, finishing third on both occasions. Zhu's Olympic performance brought anger as well as pride back home in China – those disappointed he had not won gold, smashed the windows of his home.[2]

On June 11, 1983 Zhu jumped 2.37 m, setting a new world record. He would go on to reach 2.38 and even 2.39 m, the latter on June 10, 1984. Prior to the 1984 Olympics Zhu cleared eight feet in practice, becoming unofficially the first man to clear this height. The world record stood until August 11, 1985, when Rudolf Povarnitsyn beat it by one centimetre. His 2.39 m jump in 1984 was the oldest Asian record among all Olympic events in athletics and lasted until 2013, when Mutaz Essa Barshim from Qatar jumped 2.40 m.

Zhu's indoor best of 2.31 m stood as the Chinese indoor record from 1986 until 2012, when Zhang Guowei jumped a centimetre higher.[3]


Year Competition Venue Position Event Notes
Representing   China
1981 Asian Championships Tokyo, Japan 1st High jump 2.30 CR
1982 Asian Games New Delhi, India 1st High jump 2.34 CR
1983 World Championships Helsinki, Finland 3rd High jump
Asian Championships Kuwait City, Kuwait 1st High jump 2.31 CR
1984 Summer Olympics Los Angeles, U.S. 3rd High jump
1986 Asian Games Seoul, South Korea 1st High jump
1988 Olympic Games Seoul, South Korea 20th High jump

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "China raises Olympic athletics medal hope". China Daily. Xinhua. 2008-07-29. Retrieved 2018-03-27.
  2. ^ "For Chinese, Liu's withdrawal caps rethinking of gold obsession". Xinhua. 2008-08-20. Retrieved 2018-03-27.
  3. ^ Jalava, Mirko (2013-03-07). Dong Bin leads the way as indoor records tumble in Nanjing. IAAF. Retrieved on 2018-03-27.

External linksEdit

Preceded by
  Gerd Wessig
Men's High Jump World Record Holder
1983-06-11 – 1985-08-11
Succeeded by
  Rudolf Povarnitsyn
Sporting positions
Preceded by
  Oleksiy Demyanyuk
Men's High Jump Best Year Performance
1982 – 1984
Succeeded by
  Igor Paklin