Posts

The drivers of technical evolution

When we look at track and field, technique in different events have evolved at different paces over the course of the last century. Comparing different events it is interesting to see how some techniques have barely changed while others have become unrecognizable. All of this begs the question why some events move forward technically, and others do not. Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 215: Throwvallis (with Dave Dumble)

After leading athletes to 24 NCAA titles in 15 years, throws coach Dave Dumble packed up and headed north to take on a new challenge of building a program from scratch at Oregon State University. On this week’s podcast Dumble joins us to talk about the move, what he is building at Corvallis, his coaching philosophy, and more. Read more

How to fall on your ass and get up to win gold

Imagine this: you are an up and coming 24-year-old hammer thrower ranked in the world’s top 10. You arrived at the Olympics in the best shape of your life, having qualified in fourth position and been on the podium in every meet except one that year. As you leave the call room in the depths of the stadium and emerge onto the track you’re greeted by more than 110,000 fans and also by torrential downpour. The throwing rings has quickly turned into a slippery lake. Read more

March 2019 in review: throwing

For our March site theme, we turn our attention from jumping to throwing. This site started out focused on the throwing events in track and field: shot put, discus, javelin and the hammer throw. Over the past decade we have expanded the scope to cover training and coaching for a wide range of sports. But this month we returned to our roots by putting together 7 new articles, 4 new podcasts, and 2 new videos covering all 4 throwing events. Read more

You haven’t taught until they’ve learned

In my post yesterday about Jean-Pierre Egger I wrote about the importance of having a technical philosophy and how that can look in practice. As important as that is, having a philosophy isn’t much use unless the athlete understands it. Teaching isn’t necessarily about what you say, it’s about what is heard. Or, as John Wooden used to put it, you haven’t taught until they’ve learned. Read more

Rethinking drills for the hammer throw

Back in December, I invited Sergej Litinov to Zurich to present a workshop and work with some of the Swiss hammer throwers. Since I first got to train with Litvinov in 2004, I have been impressed by the different perspective he brings to the event. He conceptualizes the hammer throw different than any other thrower I know. Back in August 2017 and September 2018 he joined member hangouts to try and explain his approach, but only seeing him with with athletes in person do you really get to understand how to put the concepts into practice. Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 192: A star is born (with Kevin McMahon)

The making of a champion starts at a young age with the athlete’s family, youth coaches, and community. The champion’s mindset then grows from there. Kevin McMahon won two US titles in the hammer throw and competed in two Olympics and four World Championships. He joins this week’s podcast to share how he started out as a thrower, the San Jose throws community he came of age in, and the inspiration he took from that. In addition, we look a bit at what it takes to be a champion in the hammer throw, and more. Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 185: Around the world (with Mattias Jons)

As an elite hammer thrower, Mattias Jons had the chance to work with coaches from a variety of countries, continents, and backgrounds. As he’s developed as a coach, his diverse background has come in handy. On this episode of the podcast he joins us to discuss some of the different approaches he’s encountered and what he has taken from Swedish, Finnish, German, Polish, American, Soviet, and other traditions. Read more

Understanding the orbit in the hammer throw

Hammer throwers have a tendency to be isolated. To start with, we spend most of our times turning around in circles in a cage. But beyond that, we sometimes get so focused on what we are trying to do that we forget why we are trying to do that. Read more

HMMR Podcast Epsidode 170: Throwing mechanics (with Don Babbitt)

Don Babbitt is one of the world’s best throwing coaches, having produced champions across every event and both genders. In addition to his role at the University of Georgia, he has been working with the IAAF on their recent biomechanical analysis of the 2017 World Championships. By adding a coach’s perspective, he can help identify key points to take away from the project in all throwing events. On this week’s episode we break down the report what its findings mean for coaches. Read more