Off season training plan/philosophy – 11 Tennessee throwers – Women – Cassie Wertman (Jr.) – Shot – 17.26m, Disc – 50.64m Maria Jimenez(Soph) – Javelin – 49.04m Danielle Holdren(FR) – Disc – 40m, shot – 11m Men – Tavis Bailey(Sr) – Shot -19.26m, Disc – 64.51m, Weight – 20.51m Matt Hoty(Sr) – Shot – 19.12m , Disc – 52m Deon Macadoo(Sr) – Hammer – 55.88m, Weight – 18.18m Cameron Brown(Jr) –, Hammer – 62.26m, Weight – 21.51m Carson Frost (Jr) – Hammer – 53.35m, Weight – 17.06m Kyle Quinn(Jr) – Javelin – 78.26m Hunter Harrison(RSoph) transfer from Ole Miss – Disc – 52m Matthew Zajac(Fr) – hs disc – 203’9”, hs shot – 59’9”
Core of off season training goals ?
As a coach my fall goals with every athlete is to strengthen their weak points from the previous season (physically and mentally). I want them to build a foundation that will allow them to have success during the major parts of the seasons. It is important to asses the previous season with each athlete before the new fall training starts. We want to look back at our journals and records to see what worked but more importantly, what didn’t. If there training dropped off at any point the previous year we will look and see if something was hindering them and make changes.
After we have had meetings about what our plan of attack is going to be for the fall we will set up some training goals with each athlete, some will be distance goals with certain balls, other goals will be attitude/mindset/technical, and of course weight room goals. I like to make sure the throwers that I coach know that I am there to help guide and assist them to what they want to do. If they tell me that they want to throw a certain mark or win conference I will let them know what it will take to get to that point and hold them accountable for it during the year. This all happens before we do any training.
The throwers at UT will take a 2-4 week break from structured training after the conclusion of their outdoor season. I recommend that they stay active but get away from hard throwing sessions. This year Tavis Bailey made a US team and competed in August so he didn’t start training until October. I want to make sure that the kids get enough of a break to where they are eager to get back to work throwing and lifting.
I don’t want them to carry over any bad habits that they had from the previous year. When training starts in September we go through a general conditioning phase and we will test in the overhead shot throw, standing long jump, 3 hop and 30m spring(British Quad).
When we start our throwing sessions I have a long-term mind set with each athlete, so I don’t have them force throws in the early fall and keep the focus on positions, rhythm, and maintaining a positive mindset for training. I spend a lot of time talking to my throwers on a weekly basis about how training is going and I am at every throwing session and lifting session.
What do your athletes throw in the off season? What is the goal of throwing?
The throwers will throw their primary and secondary events during the fall, due to NCAA rules we don’t start full on throwing sessions until October. During August and September kids throw on a voluntary basis. As far as weight of implements, we will spend time throwing different weights in training but it is specific to the individual. I don’t like the athletes to jeopardize technique and rhythm for distance in training, I constantly have to remind them of this.
What weight lifting exercises do you focus on in the fall? Does it change during the competitive season?
Early fall – full squat, front squat, deadlift, bench, Olympic complex’s, DB aux work. Mid Fall – Clean, Snatch, Front squat, squat, Bench, Board press, Jerk(front), Late Fall – Hang/Box Clean, Snatch, Behind the neck jerk, partial movements in squat/pull. During the indoor season we will be lifting the heaviest in the pulls and squats but the volume is down.
I have been very lucky in my career when it comes to coaches and have thrown for Don Babbitt, Jud Logan, Rob MacIntyre(UGA now WWE),Zolt Nemeth, Justin Carvaloh, and Rob Rathbun(woodland HS). All of these coaches have been successful and all had different weight room training, the one commonality in all of the training was purpose, effort, and something that gets overlooked which is the training group. I like lifting as a group and having the throwers push one another, this is very important for me.
Have you tried anything new this fall?
I have incorporated short wires into our hammer training this fall, it is the first time that I have had an athlete spend a decent amount of time throwing them. So far I like what they gave the throwers. For the shot and discus throwers we threw more varied weighted objects, I have seen some good things come from using them. I know that my throwers might not think so, but I haven’t pushed the weight room as hard this fall, some of the throwers had some class conflicts and others I want to increase their throwing volume. We have had throwers that have tripled their normal throwing volumes for the fall so I have pulled back in the weight room to account for the increase in throwing volume. The biggest change this fall was taking throws in sets, so having hammer throwers take 3-5 throws in a row for example.
Are you using new equipment?
We are lucky enough to have an indoor training facility and have a net that we are throwing into, it is great for getting throwing volume up and make some technical changes. Warm weather training” its warm enough in Knoxville.
What do you do to relax? Do you have any vacations planned?
To relax I will workout and go fishing around Knoxville. Last summer I caught a 65lb catfish, it was the ugliest thing I had ever seen but I had a blast bringing it in. I don’t have any vacations planned.
What do you do for your own health and fitness?
I really want to like cardio but spending 30 min on a bike or a treadmill makes me feel guilty when there is a squat rack staring at me from across the gym. I lift 3-4 times a week, it is something that is important to me and helps relieve stress.
Goals for the 2015 season?
My first goal is for every thrower to score at our conference meet and place higher than the previous year to help the team. Last year our throwers on the men’s side scored well, but the women did not. I am very excited to work with this group, from top to bottom they are the most talented kids I have coached. We opened up in December and had Cameron Brown throw 21.51m in the weight which should get him to indoors…hopefully. Tavis Bailey and Matthew Hoty opened up over 18m in the shot, Tavis is also looking very good in the weight and has a shot to make indoors in both events. I am excited about Carson Frost and Deon Macadoo who are both working towards the 60’ mark in the weight. Cassie Wertman has had a great fall of training and I expect her to make indoors in the shot and gain more experience that will help her in the future. Outdoors we will be stronger as a group with the long throws, Kyle Quinn (78m jav thrower) is looking better than ever and I expect him to be more consistent than 2014.