Entries by Kibwé Johnson

Training Camp Review

After returning from Arizona I was rudely greeted with another snow storm and bitter cold. So after two weeks outside, back indoors for me. Honestly, I don’t know how on earth I survived last year until almost April throwing indoors day after day. With so much outdoor training this winter in various locales, my fuse for tolerating throwing indoors is vastly shorter. While I still really appreciate my time indoors, it is after all, the best way to truly focus solely on technique. I just don’t wanna do it for 4 months! Lastly, this isn’t complaining. I do what needs to get done. But after 5 years of throwing in Ohio in any and all weather year round, you will not see me apologize for being fortunate enough for the possibility of training inside. I paid my dues. The city of Kamloops is very accommodating and I’m grateful.

New Technique

The past few weeks have been huge in my development. My major technical error began soon after I first moved to Kamloops. When trying to perfect the art of just pushing the hammer, and only the hammer, I’d push and leave my head behind. For instance, on video I’d push the hammer by my mid point to the left, but my head would be left behind mugging for the cameras…(hence the awkward head movements Dr. B imitated of me like he’s trying to break his own neck). Real fun for me to see him exaggerate my faults like that. But, I’ve never been one to fold when challenged. So I continued to think, and do, to figure a way to get it consistently right. Key word, “consistent”.

First Week of Camp

Wow! It’s been a good start to training camp here in Phoenix. However, it didn’t begin without a lot of frustration. Bondarchuk has grown impatient [and so have I] with my lack of improvement on the entry of my throw. It has improved, but not like I think it should be. It was one of the few times he’s shown serious frustration. So of course that just makes me want to figure this mess out more. But that is when I realized that the further I throw, the more frustrated I get with my own technical faults. I hate them. And especially the fact that he’s been yelling g at me about it for a few years now. But I guess It would be different if I had these faults for that long and I wasn’t improving as a thrower. This was my first couple of days here. Since then, I’ve been doing pretty well. Still not great technically with my first turn, but the rest is coming. Boy, I sure would like my body to figure this out.

Finding Yourself In The Ring

Last week I watched the documentary Riding Giants… Go here for the trailer, here for the whole movie.

Man, do I have great respect for people who do what they love to do and the ‘it’ factor that makes the brain go. Surfers talk about chasing the biggest swell as an experience. And you can see it in their faces as they speak about riding that wave. It’s amazing. It’s emotional. It’s something you’ll never forget. I’m from California, and I’ve never tried surfing, but as I was sitting there listening to these people share their feelings, I feel the same way.

I am Divided

I’m divided between wanting to document everything I do in training over this next year, and not showing or saying anything at all and just letting my results speak for themselves. Last week, I saw that I was not ranked in Track and Field News’ top ten world list. I’m not mad, or bitter. Never mind what I think about the rankings, or how they’re decided. Do I agree? No. But as I’ve gotten older, I find that you can’t take these things personally. Between the number of times I threw over 78m and the 7-8 of their top ten that I beat, I think I’m better placed around 7-9. But that’s just me. Normally I wouldn’t care at all, but it will affect some funding I get from USATF, and that’s what makes it a bit unfair. So when situations like this arise, I want to shut everything off and just handle my own business. But I know I can’t think that way because I really do feel that I am doing right by my website.

Hurdles and Hammer: Observations

I just got done reading a great article and I felt compelled to blog. It has become clear to me after reading Steve McGill’s hurdle analysis that the state of the hurdles and hammer throw in America share a common hurdle, if you will. And that is technique.

While reading this post, I couldn’t help but agree with many things said, because it’s how I felt about my own hammer technique and when I finally made the conscious decision to change it. I thought, I know I have the talent, why am I not throwing farther? When I finally accepted this fact, everything changed.