I think I may have set the record for the longest pre-order period in the history of the world. My upcoming book on hammer throwing, The Ball and Chain, has quietly been in our online store for more than a year. The core of the book itself has been done for that long too but that is only part of the work; I still had the copy editing, layout, cover design, and more to finish. This took a back seat to other projects and, since my wife is a perfectionist in this area, we had to get it just right before finalizing.
So I was excited when I received a hard copy of the book in the mail this week. It’s done! With pre-orders to be shipped next week, there are just a few days left to pre-order the book at a discount.
The book is an approachable guide to hammer throwing that should be of interest to throwers of all levels. A broad range of topics are covered, including technique, training, coaching, and related topics like the science of hammer throwing and talent identification. You can find a detailed description of each part of the book below.
Table of Contents
Click here to view the table of contents and learn more about the book.
Introduction – I open the book with the story of how I came to hammer throwing. Looking back on the 15 years I’ve dedicated to the hammer throw I have learned a lot about technique and training, but I have also learned three traits that are more important than that. Without them you cannot succeed in the hammer throw.
Part I: Starting to Throw – The first three chapters of the book focus on starting to throw. In Chapter 1 I lay out my philosophy of hammer throwing that I come back to throughout the book. This is a topic I refer to in all the subsequent chapters. Chapter 2 then takes on the topic of talent identification and methods to identify the next generation of hammer throwers. Chapter 3 then lays out a simple approach to teach the event. While portions of this book are focussed on beginning or elite throwers, I try approach the topics in a way that will be interesting to everyone.
Part II: Hammer Throw Technique – The next five chapters dive deep into hammer throwing technique. Chapters 4 and 5 set the stage by looking at the different aspects of technique in general and also laying out some of the basic science behind hammer throwing. You don’t need to be a scientist to throw the hammer, but it helps to know some of the concepts that make throws go far. Chapters 6 and 7 then discuss the specifics of technique in terms of positions and movements. Chapter 8 finishes of the discussion with tips on how to coach technique; knowing what to do is one thing, but getting your athletes to do it is quite another.
Part III: Advanced Technique – I’ve dedicated two more chapters to more advanced technical issues. Chapter 9 looks closer at some common problems and solutions, while chapter 10 looks further into the science of hammer throwing by focusing on biomechanics.
Part IV: Training for the Hammer Throw – To finish the book I look at training methods. Part of training is selecting the right exercises, and part of it is how you put them together. I cover both topics in the final four chapters.
If this sounds of interest, you can pre-order with the click of a button. And I’d love to hear your feedback once you get a chance to read it as it will give me more ideas for articles to write in the future.