HMMR Podcast Episode 313: Throwing smarter (with Brian Bedard)

Success in the throws often comes down to being smarter. Smart enough to master the fundamentals of technique. Smart enough to understand and communicate with athletes. And smart enough to put everything together. On this week’s podcast Colorado State coach Brian Bedard shares his approach to coaching smarter, including his lessons on leadership, communication, and technique.

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Brian Bedard is the head track and field coach at Colorado State University. Bedard joined the program as a throws coach in 1988 after throwing for the university as an athlete. He was promoted to head coach in 2006. During his time with the Rams he has coached countless all-Americans, including athletes like NCAA champion Mostafa Hassan (shot put), NCAA champion Casey Malone (discus), and former NCAA record holder Loree Smith Thornton (hammer).

Related resources

  • This episode is brought to you by HMMR Plus. Become a member for full access to our videos, articles, and podcast archives.
  • To learn more about throwing, visit our throwing resources page.
  • For more about Bedard’s background, you can read his profile from the Colorado State webpage.
  • You can learn more from Bedard on Instagram (@throwing_smarter) and YouTube. In addition, he has put together a discus course with Casey Malone and Russ Winger.
  • Some other throws coaches and influences were mentioned on the podcast, including Dave Wollman (guest on Episode 44) and Justin St. Clair (guest on Episode 105).

Key quotes and topics

  • 0:00 – Introduction.
  • 3:45 – Stories from past throwers.
  • 6:30 – Background and learning as a young coach.
  • 10:00 – Recruiting and finding the hidden gems.
  • 14:00 – Coaching at a mid major.
  • 21:00 – The unfair playing field in the weight throw.
  • 25:15 – Head coaching, leadership, and communication: “You’ll hear we have an open door policy here so you can come in and that’s bullsh**. Everybody says that open door policy. The problem is it’s uncomfortable for an athlete or staff person just to set up an appointment and come in and talk to you. So I try to meet either athletes or coaches where they’re at.”
  • 32:00 – Pillars of shot put and discus technique.
  • 38:30 – Multi-throws combinations.
  • 41:45 – Going vertical and double support: “As soon as that right leg straightens, the ability to rotate the knee and the hip almost stops.”
  • 44:45 – Prioritizing technical issues: “As a coach, you got to decide: We come up on an accident and you’re looking at, okay, let’s do triage here. What’s what’s the most serious injury we need to treat first? What’s the most serious technical issue we need to treat first as a coach. And I think some coaches out there treat a lot of the technical issues with the same weight and the same value.”
  • 47:00 – The role of standing throws.

Complete transcript

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