Quote from Kap
seems the ringer throwers are behind the curve (and speerwurfers) on this point: it's been know for quite some time that heavy/hard or vertical landing on the throwing side leg kills potential distance as well as causing injury to elbow, shoulder and back. The "softstep" idea for javelin throwers should be considered in teaching right leg (for right hand throwers) action in shot and discus: light impact (no sound!) and active toe rotation on a sinking right knee. I teach the idea/image of the right landing on tissue paper: pivot over it without tearing it. This allows the left block to more suddenly stop forward momentum and channel it into the sequence of elastic reflexes, from the ground up, that "throw" your implement. Studies by Klaus Bartoneitz and many Finnish training sites using force plates during throws showed the fastest release speed and longest throws came with minimal right foot impact/force and high left foot impacts. A heavy/hard right landing starts the delivery sequence because it's essentially a block: you rotate vertically and horizontally but it happens too soon and at release you are actually falling and piking to the left..... ouch!
Learning this skill is way more important than lifting in HS age throwers- even for a 12 lb shot a kid with basic body weight strength (push-ups, chins, sprinting and jumping) can reach very good distances with those physical abilities and good technical training. Most throwers at any age/experience have more power than they can correctly use.
published at Feb 10th 2009 12:05am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from hilltopper
While reading yesterdays posts, I am hearing alot of the same things. Everyone should agree technique is the most important tool. The problem in the U.S. is the support system that allows you the opportunity at the next level. Highschool throwers have to have a certain level of succes to have an opportunity in college and the same for collegiate athletes to get to the world class level. The time frame for getting to these levels, I believe is the biggest problem we have in the U.S.. We have great coaches that have bought into strength first, due to the distances needed to win or be competitive. You can win and be considered a great coach or prepare kids technically and be considered a mediocre coach. I am a highschool coach and I cringe everytime I see some of the other highschool coaches put workouts on this site. Some of these programs are more detailed then most colleges use. My goal is to get a kid to throw as far as he can and use what god gave him athletically and let the college coaches add the strength.
published at Feb 10th 2009 12:46am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from Tony Ciarelli
hilltopper, Why can't you do both?
I'm not quite sure what you are saying.
Is it that high school kids should not be lifting weights at all and not try to develop that system while they are learning throws technique?
or just that high school coaches spend to much time in the weightroom and not enough time with throwing technique.
So as I read it, you don't do any strength training what so ever, so they can better learn throws technique.
Capo di tutti Capi
published at Feb 10th 2009 1:14am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from tomsonite
When it comes to high school (14-18 year old) throwers specifically, strength and technique must be developed at the same time, especially if you want to prepare throwers for throwing in college.
Having a great technical foundation going into college would of course be a good thing. However, what happens when a kid with very good technique yet not much strength gets to college? Most likely, the college coach will put them on to a lifting program to get them big and strong as quick as possible, which will have very negative effects on the thrower's once excellent technique. Gaining large amounts of strength and mass in a quick amount of time will affect the athlete's nervous system in a way that they will need to re-learn the technique they once had.
The best course of action, IMO, is to gradually build technique and strength at the same time from a young age. For high school throwers (again, 14-18 year olds or younger) technique should be priority #1 with strength being a close #2. Once the athlete has been throwing and lifting for a number of years from a young age, they'll probably be pretty strong anyway, and from college on is where technique should be the primary focus.
Thats my two cents anyway.
published at Feb 10th 2009 1:49am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from w8coach
I think what Hilltopper is advocating is that the most important aspect of the equation is tech eventhough strength has its place as well. When athletes begin to develop tendancies to push or voluntarily contract in order to deliver the impements, they have interfered with the neuromucular pathways that allow for stretch reflex and complete motions. I believe that it is important to strengthen the body to throwing sahpe that can handle the stresses of increased gravity demands incurred during the movement without getting so strong that they loose the the feel of the implement.
published at Feb 10th 2009 1:59am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from Tony Ciarelli
w8coach, I will refer back to what Viking said every athlete is different and has to be treated so. Hilltopper said he would leave the strength training to the college coaches, I think with that philosophy he is short changing at least some of his kids. Every person develops in their own time, some sooner some later. I mean it's no different than what you teach in the ring. If you had two throwers both just starting and one picks up the techniques very fast and the other does not, do you keep them at the same pace in their learning? It's not fair to either one to treat them the same.
Capo di tutti Capi
published at Feb 10th 2009 2:11am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from Brad Reid
Good points, Kap't.
So, just using the discus or rotational shot as a working model, when a right-hander turns out of the back of the ring, the athlete must "feather" or hold back on anything even remotely close to a maximum thrust off of the bent leg and ankle.
Why? Because any springy athlete worthy of a big throw would literally jump all the way across the ring on a full-out, one-legged standing broad jump.
Then, the athlete must land "lightly" in the middle to accomodate the requisite pivot action to set up and anchor the post leg. Every coach has a kid who hits the middle with a heavy, flat foot and the throw is essentially ruined then and there.
Then, relative to the left turn out of the back and the right pivot in the middle, the post leg should register as the heaviest, since it is the brake and the block.
But, even here, the idea of a rigid straight leg has been disproved in slo-mo films of throwers, jav dudes for sure get more out of the shoulder carriage and torso whip from a spongy post leg.
You can count on this... the Finnish force plate readings of the jump off in a long jump isn't near the reading it would register if it were positioned at the landing site of the jumper. On the take-off the jumper has two vectors to consider as he is mixing a vertical vector with a strong horizontal one for optimal distance. It's all brakes at the end of a jump.
***Rob, Janus Robberts told me the exact same feeling you are describing, that when he got off big throws, he could feel it radiate through his body, anything to him, it seemed, but effortless.
But, what I think Robberts was describing then, you too now as a memory, is that when all the elements of timing line up for a great throw, what makes it a "great throw" is the fact that you are so well-positioned for a protracted period in the execution of the throw, that you feel the resistance of the shot as your body acts against it to accelerate it.
Nothing feels worse than spinning around, feeling no resistance, getting no separation, then all you feel is the final 1/100th of a second as the shot or disc rolls off of the finger. It would be like a bird flapping its wings in a vacuum.
This is my way of saying, while it may feel like you are dug into the ground, it is more likely you gliding over the ring lightly hitting great positions where you are carrying and feeling the potential energy stored up owing to the very positions themselves. Hmm! Hard to articulate.
published at Feb 10th 2009 2:22am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from Kap
I don't look at the left leg exit action as being held back or "feathered": (tho' that's a word I like) I want the exit action to be quick and dynamic but coupled with the energy the right leg swing adds and combine the 2 into a directed, relaxed effort that gets you behind the block without loss of flow on the right foot. Issac Newton (throws coach par excellence) taught us there is an equal and opposite re-action to any action, so in order to have the left leg in front of the hips/CG to block well as the right lands and pivots it needs to "get there" from a quick, takeoff so it is in front quickly. It's a powerful effort but at the speed end of the power spectrum for a good exit, I feel. The syncing of right sweep/left takeoff is where Danik and other discus greats found that what they did out of the back of the ring mirrored what happens in the front.
published at Feb 10th 2009 2:35am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from hilltopper
My post wasn't to debate how coaches coach their kids. I know Tony is very weight room knowledgeable and I am sure what he teaches and coaches is to the best of his knowledge. I am not down grading coaches. I believe coaches and kids are put in a no win situation. To get noticed in highschool you have to have decent size, and throw far. The highschool implements can be manipulated by strength. We are looking for great technicians at all levels of throwing. Yet, the window of opportunity gets smaller the longer it takes you to throw far. So, our answer is the weightroom. I love weightlifting and I wish every kid I worked with had a minimum 250 clean and 30 inch vertical leap. But all kids are not created equal. I have coached for 15 years and I have coached all shapes and sizes. I have had successful kids and some not so. My point was only that we need a system that doesn't rush kids to throw far while learning to do it right. There is a fine line between time spent on tech and the emphasis on it and time spent throwing huge numbers up in the weight room. And to the coach or whom ever said you have to lift to prepare the kids for college, that is the problem, we believe kids have to be a certain strength or size to be prepared for college. That is a misconception.
published at Feb 10th 2009 3:54am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from Coach Rodney
Many of us know that Tech and Strength are important to our events. At the high school level, we don't have time to do things the best way. Many pro's and con's to strength programs, the majority of young HS throwers here in the states, play football and are coached by the football coach in the weightroom. Only a handful of coaches that coach football and the throws have a good to better program ie;Tony C and Newport Harbor. There are many that don't have the luck to do this. Many coaches that are there to coach the throws have little experience and many aren't willing to learn. You have some that give the kids the implement and say go throw! There are some who don't know a thing about the way throwers should train and lift, and they will not go to classes or clinics to learn. Some go the extra mile to see that their throwers are training at the higher level. We need to adapt and prepare for the upcoming season, come up with a program that will benefit the young thrower. Communicate with the other coaches, ie the football coach who controls the weight room. If you were a coach in countries outside of the USA and you work with young throwers, what do you have to give that young thrower? How do they train? How long does that thrower train? It might be different then here in the states? There are many aspects to this title of Strength vs Technique. Really it depends on the program, the coach, the young thrower. Those who want it bad enough will go the best way. That extra mile. My thoughts.
published at Feb 10th 2009 3:57am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from w8coach
The point I was trying to make wasn't achallenge of your philosophy, only to say that what Hilltopper wroe was probably a little out of contect. I don't think he means he doesn't weight lift with his kids it's just much lower on his HS totem pole than the weights. In short HS season, a kid is going to get a lot more out of tech than attempting to change his strength in the same short time.
published at Feb 10th 2009 4:08am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from Brad Reid
For sure... what I am saying is that it isn't an effort similar to the max thrust one would use to do a standing long jump, but it needs to be very dynamic and quick, for sure.
Jesse Owens was once asked how he could run so fast, his secret. He said he ran like he "was running across the top of a hot skillet," words to that effect.
What the great sprinter and jumper was saying is that if one stomped the ground (thus maximizing the load on an imaginary force plate and the quadriceps) on each stride, it would actually diminish the horizontal element in the run. So, he skimmed across the surface lightly. Of the more contemporary crowd, I think Michael Johnson did this very thing.
So, every day, one sees some big kid with super strong legs who can't run sprints well. They try to put too much power in each stride, hit the ground too hard, and wallow through a sprint.
Super strong dudes who fail at boxing often do the exact same thing... they mistake their strength for punching power. So, the big bruising bench presser gets his ass kicked by a lean, 180 lb. bar rat. Happens every day.
This is my great fear of the 150' discus thrower or 50' shot putter... that a 700 lb. squat and a 500 lb. bench press might cause them to accentuate the strength in areas of the throw where it simply isn't called for... or effective... or adaptable.
Light but dynamic step out of the back, a light pivot in the middle, a strong post to the front on an extended or nearly extended leg... I simply cannot see the need for the 700 lb. full squat here... sorry.
Super strong trunk, sure, torso strong enough to absorb the plyo reflex back on the body from the shot/discus, yes.
I mean there IS an obvious element of throwing strength; if not, we'd be able to sling a 2.5 discus a far as a 2 kg. But, it is throwing strength best developed by throwing with a measure of general training.
published at Feb 10th 2009 4:10am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from Kap
I was told years ago by Helsinki Oly silver medalist Bill Miller that ".... words are powerful." That comment has kept me quite selective about the way I describe aspects of throwing and technique- for instance i will NEVER talk of "driving" the hip as it brings up the actions you so nicely described as to be avoided! If you haven't already figured it out, I use analogies/"word pictures" to get concepts or ideas across. Along the lines of what Jesse Owens said I'll tell athletes to move "like they're barefoot on hot coals" or for cold climate kids "... don't break the skim ice" or the tissue/rice paper image. I do ask them to "leave a crater" when the block hits, but it's an anlged one, as they hit it "sliding" in behind it.
Bartoneitz showed (at least for javelin throwers) that a 10% increase in speed (runway- ring I'd assume as well) required a 4X improvement in block ability to make use of that speed. Most automatically think of more squat power/weight needed but much can come from simply being in better position when you land so, as the Big O puts it, your skeleton can handle the stress, not joints, muscles and tendons. cleaning up "how you get there" can help "make' you stronger more than reps w/ small cars.
published at Feb 10th 2009 4:25am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from gripnrip
This is the easiest way to look at it, there can be good throwers that do not lift, and there can be good throwers who lift a lot. The great throwers are the ones that combine both aspects to because a great thrower. In the throwing events, there is no way you can be an elite level thrower in the world without doing this. It does not mean you have to be a monster in the weightroom, but you have to respect and do your thing in there.
published at Feb 10th 2009 6:34am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from jayess
If one only need a certain base level of strength in order to throw far, and the magic ingredient is combining that strength level with high quality technique...then why is there so much talk on this board about so-and-so benching a Buick, or squatting Rosie O'Donnell?
Doesn't that kind of talk do a disservice to the "young-uns" who are trying to find the best path.
(That "young-uns" was for you Brad Reid, being an expatriate Texan.)
published at Feb 10th 2009 8:27am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from tomsonite
"And to the coach or whom ever said you have to lift to prepare the kids for college, that is the problem, we believe kids have to be a certain strength or size to be prepared for college. That is a misconception."
I'm guessing this is in regard to my post...
I never said kids need to be a certain size or have a certain bench or squat by the time they get to college...read my post, I gave no numbers anywhere.
In your original post of the day hilltopper, you said "My goal is to get a kid to throw as far as he can and use what god gave him athletically and let the college coaches add the strength." This gave me the impression that you do little strength training, if at all, or you don't view weight room strength as a high priority.
My point was that suppose one of your kids goes into college a very good thrower technically, but they are lacking weight room strength. The first thing the college coach is going to want to do is put them on a lifting program that will get them stronger as quickly as possible (especially if its a guy, since the implements will be heavier). When you make rapid gains in strength and mass, your nervous system gets re-wired to accomodate...meaning that the once great technique you taught your athlete in high school is now gone, and they have to re-learn their old technique or learn a new technique all over again.
In a nutshell, the 4 years of technique work you gave your athlete will have gone down the crapper in a few rapid strength building cycles.
In my opinion, a better approach would be to do technique work and develop weight room strength at the same time, to try to avoid this as little as possible once your throwers get to college. By saying this, I do NOT mean your throwers should be able to bench, squat, or clean a certain number. But what I think coaches should do is teach their throwers how to do these exercises properly, and have them progress in weight room strength as much as their natural ability will allow. Seeing as how teenagers are hormone factories, if its done like that they will get strong anyway.
The end result will be a thrower coming out of high school who is both technically sound, and most likely strong enough to not have to go on a program that will give him/her rapid strength gains while taking away from their technique.
published at Feb 10th 2009 10:14am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/
Quote from Kap
training properly to throw makes you strong almost always but training to get strong does not relay at as high a co-relation. There needs to be a balance in lots of areas to meet the end result of more distance thrown. And if you don't see how the many parts of training must more or less be in balance with each other it's easy to stray into too much of what was a good thing.
The training in technical movements and throwing many things of many weights teaches technical positions and the range of physical and mental needs for success. This teaches sound mechanics as well as developing lots of specific power and flexibility. To me, this is the basis of training young (under 17yrs) throwers, especially if they only come to throwing in HS (13-14 yrs old). 8 X 60m continuous discus turns w/ a 5k hammer (handle on ball, done lefty & righty) will make your legs, core and shoulders damn strong and give you a sense of moving with balance and rhythm. Lots of med ball and shot throws are ways to develop explosive power- there's a news flash for all of you. I think you add strength when you know how to use it, especially early in the learning curve- too much power too soon can make technical flaws easy to ingrain for the sake of short term success and certainly lead to injuries from poor delivery positions. While this is, to me, almost gospel in training HS throwers the basic concept is helpful to sub-elite to elite as well. I had more than a few "conversations" with my throwers last season keeping them more restrained in the weight room as their technique could not safely handle increased power. 2 out of 3 had 4m PB's and average upped by 2-3m. The lone athlete who did not PR had major technical renovations and is now to the point where power increases will be well handled- current program is a lifting day, day off, med ball/shot throws in technical ways, day off, weights, day off, tech/throwing power, day off, repeat over 8 weeks. Working over 40 hr week mandated some tweeking of a "normal" schedule but this looks to increase raw and special power plus technique and special flexibility all in equal measures.
It's not "...all roads lead to Rome" as much as ".... a lot of different roads lead to Rome".
published at Feb 10th 2009 10:35am on http://www.effortlessthrow.org/