I remember the first time I saw video of Jüri Tamm throw the hammer. A big round man with a mustache and a fluffy head of hair lumbered into the ring. Compared to his compatriots Yuriy Sedykh and Sergey Litvinov, he seemed to move like a sloth through the circle. His feet flailed around as he completed three turns. It wasn’t the prettiest throw until the hammer left his hand and it flew. And kept flying. And kept flying. Tamm, who passed away on Thursday, set the world record and won two Olympic medals. His best mark is still among the top 10 all-time. Yet still, when I watch him throw, I can’t help but think: what did I just see?
Entries by Martin Bingisser
It’s time to open the listener mailbag again. As the track season comes to and end and the fall sports season starts up, we answer some questions on scoring trends in track and field, general preparation, plyometrics, med balls, and share some memories of Yuriy Sedykh.
World hammer throw record holder Yuriy Sedykh passed away on Tuesday. When you think of Sedykh there is Sedykh the thrower and Sedykh the man. I’m not going to pretend I knew Sedykh the man very well. I met him a handful of times at clinics, but never had an in depth conversation with him. Nevertheless, like every hammer thrower in the world, I intimately knew Sedykh the thrower. Looking around social media for the past few days it is amazing to see all the memories of throwers like me. They met him a few times, but he changed their lives. Below are a few thoughts on Sedykh the thrower.
While everyone focuses on the medal table during the Olympics, what I find even more interesting is the placing table. The placing table allocates points for each finalist: 8 points for first, 1 for eighth. Medals can often be a matter of luck, but by looking at a country’s depth you get a real idea of trends in the sport. Below are some insights gathered from analyzing the results from Tokyo, as well as placings for the last six Olympics.
Coaches now devote more time to recovery and injury prevention than ever before. At the same time, injury rates have climbed to historic levels in many sports. How can it be that we’re working harder to prevent injuries, but athletes continue to get hurt at increasing rates? On this week’s GAINcast we look at how the modern approach to injury prevention might actually be making things worse, and propose some new ideas for reducing injury rates.
The dust has settled following Tokyo, giving us time to analyze the most recent trends in our sport. It’s not just a question of who is hot and who is not, but how current throwers are adapting and changing technique to reach new levels. On this week’s podcast coach Don Babbitt joins us to look at the technical trends in the throws that emerged in Tokyo.
What is keeping us from going faster? Ironically, a lot of times it is what we are doing rather than what we aren’t doing. What we other think is helping our speed can be counterproductive. On this week’s GAINcast we discuss some concepts that might be limiting your speed training, as well as methods and planning tips for getting faster.
All sports have rules. Rules are there to standardize competition, making it both more safe and fair for the competitors. Rules define the playing area, implement, procedures, and more. Rules can go overboard, but the idea is that the rules make sure the winner determined by physical and tactical components, rather than luck. In the throwing events various rules define the size and weight of the implement, where it must be thrown, the design of the cage, and the structure of the competition. However one there is one big gap in the rules: the throwing surface.
uncertainty leading into the games was left fans unsure of what was to come. But once the throwing started, historic performances arrived daily. On this week’s episode guest Shaun Pickering joins us to break down the performances in each of the throwing events, look at what made the Tokyo Olympics different, and draw out some key lessons for coaches and athletes from the 2020 Olympics.
Every year l write a memorial to Harold Connolly on the anniversary of his death. When l started to think about this year’s topic last month the theme was going to be mission accomplished. America was sending its strongest team to the Olympics in a century. Harold Connolly’s work to resurrect American hammer throwing has been showing progress for a long time. Now, 11 years after his death, we were on the verge of seeing the ultimate fruits of his labor.