Monday, March 17, 2014

Technique is important

On Saturday we had a practice session for the upcoming track and field event I signed up for as part of this year's Corporate Challenge.  We are lucky to have someone who has many years of shot put under his belt and is a patient teacher - Thanks Luke!.  4 of us met at a local park which actually had a ring and toe block so we could learn a little something about how to put the shot.

In my mind I figured - "no problem!"  I'm a big guy so I should be able to do this.  No big deal.  Well, this is where the mind outstrips the body's abilities.  Luke showed up proper form and in my mind I was doing it exactly as he was, but obviously that wasn't the case.  My throws were much shorter and I just couldn't get any rotation to go with the throw.  After about 30 throws I realized that with all of the time it was taking I wasn't improving much, if any plus my shoulder was starting to feel it.

At that point I stopped practicing as I realized the amount of time available between now and Saturday was insufficient for any real improvement.  How far did I throw?  I don't know as we didn't have a tape measure there.  If I had to guess I would say in the 20 to 24 ft range.  I hope to do better on Saturday, but not holding my breath.

What was really bad was attempting to throw the softball after the shot put.  I was terribly uncoordinated.  I was throwing line drives and sinkers like I was throwing out a runner sliding in to home plate as opposed to getting loft on the ball for distance.  The softball was too light after the shot put.  I was expecting more resistance and just couldn't get it right.  Add to that my back was tightening up and after 10 throws I was done.

The good news is that the softball throw is first on Saturday so I am going lighter to heavier and I hope that will improve the situation. I have to focus on form and technique and worry a bit less about power.

So I am practicing the motions without the shot - Elbow up, thumb down.  Shot tight to the face.  Use the opposite arm to pull your through to open up and then push the shot up and out with a finish flick of the fingers. Reset. Repeat.  I have no idea if this will help but figure it can't hurt.