Posts

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 188: The state of sport (with Vern Gambetta)

Our annual tradition is to start off the year with a combined episode of the HMMR Podcast and GAINcast to discuss the state of training for sports. The whole crew gets together on this episode to talk about some of the issue facing our profession, the recent topics we’ve been studying, and our goals for 2019. Read more

GAINcast Episode 150: The state of sport (with Nick Garcia)

Our annual tradition is to start off the year with a combined episode of the HMMR Podcast and GAINcast to discuss the state of training for sports. The whole crew gets together on this episode to talk about some of the issue facing our profession, the recent topics we’ve been studying, and our goals for 2019. 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

We all just want to be Litvinov

Like most hammer throwers, I was shocked to learn yesterday that former world record holder and Olympic champion Sergey Litvinov unexpectedly passed away. I only had the chance to meet him once, but he had one of the biggest impacts on my development as a thrower and coach; right up there with my two main mentors Harold Connolly and Anatoliy Bondarchuk. Read more

Thoughts from Litvinov and McMahon on accelerating the hammer

Biomechanists can break down how the hammer is accelerated, but one thing they can’t do is determine what is going on in an athlete’s mind to perform the actions they see. What does the athlete think about? How do they try an initiate the movement? This is an area that intrigues me and I’ve been chatting with elite hammer throwers recently to find out their approach. There is no one right answer here, but hearing different viewpoints gives you more tools you can use as a coach. Read more

Fartlek Throwing

Typically distance runners have trained via two methods: either putting in the miles or running fast intervals. But, back in the 1930s, Swedish coach Gösta Holmér developed a new method called fartlek training that combined the two. The fartlek – Swedish for speed play – simply combined periods of fast running mixed with periods of slower running. It proved to be a quick success. Read more

Hammer Throw Video Review: Martin Bingisser

Lately I have been having some good discussions on Facebook about hammer throw technique and hope to have some further articles about the topic this season. In the meantime Martin sent me a video of his throw last month to learn more about how the theory of technical applies to an actual throw. Below are a few comments. Read more

Learning How the Hammer Moves

Everyone wants to know how to accelerate the hammer. But before you can answer that question you have to look at another question first: Does the body force the hammer to move? Or does the hammer force the body to move? You might say “This is easy! We push and control the hammer. We force the hammer to move.” Is it that easy? I would say this statement is both true and false. Read more

Looking Back at 2016: Top 10 Hammer Throwing Stories

As is the case every year, 2016 was filled with highs and lows in the world of hammer throwing. World records were set, and former record setters athletes were banned. New athletes arrived, and old athletes retired. The Olympic men’s hammer final lacked some luster, but overall the year more than lived up to my expectations. Below is my list of top hammer throwing stories from the past year. Read more