Introduction to the Discus

Introduction to the DISCUS
Are rotational shot and disc “the
 Though the shot and disc rotational
techniques may look extremely similar they
are different in many way.
 When achieved at a high level, the shot and
disc technique will feel extremely different to
the athlete, especially at point of release.
 It is important to understand this when
teaching beginners.
HOW are they different?
 The discus is out on a “lever” away from the
 The discus does not need to be lifted and the
point of release the same way the shot put
 The discus ring is bigger than the shot put
ring, allowing the athlete more room to “run
the ring” out of the back.
Important concepts for young thrower
to understand
 Do not GRIP the discus
 The throwing arm must stay straight and away
from the body
 The throwing arm should stay loose and
relaxed at all points of the throw
 The sooner the athlete understands the
discus is primarily thrown with “the legs”…the
Explaining WHY you don’t need to grip
the disc
 “I’m afraid its going to fall”…Sometimes NO it
ISN’T, just won’t do.
 “If you had a bucket of water in each hand
and you spun around with them, both straight
out from you shoulders, would the water
 Helicopter drill
The release
 Until the athlete can release a discus clean, or
close to it, chances are they will not find
gratification in the event.
 It is very important the athlete learns the discus
is released off of the index finger of the throwing
 The hand stays loose and relaxed, as the thumb
and palm of hand stay down on the discus.
 Drills to teach the release
 Throwing the discus up to yourself
 Bowling
Stand throw
 Athlete begins with a shoulder width base,
feet shall stagger with heel of the dominant
foot parallel to middle of the non-dominant
 Athlete will then turn upper body towards the
back of the ring, feeling upper and lower body
separation in midsection.
 The athlete will then bend the dominant knee
and wrap the discus back.
Stand throw
 Once the athlete is wrapped with their
shoulders facing the back of the ring, the first
movement is to turn the dominant hip around
towards the sector. Leaving the head, upper
body and arm hanging back as long as
 Discus= TURN then LIFT
 Think “stay down and turn as long as possible”
Blocking the left side
 Once the dominant hip
is facing towards the
opposite sector line the
athlete lifts from the
legs. Next, the nondominate side stops.
This blocks all the
energy created from
the spin from going in
any other direction but
into the implement
Half turn
 Athlete begins with shoulders facing the sector and
the right toe facing down the left sector. The athletes
back foot is where it would be in start of full throw.
The athlete wraps the disc back while still facing out
into the sector
 The right side turning leads the throw, as the left foot
slightly pushes off and lands in stand throw position.
 It is important to watch that the athlete is not
leading the half turn with the left side and upper
body pulling.
 The athlete will rotate over the right leg until the
back leg touches down in the “stand throw position”
Half turn
 A non-reverse stand throw teaches the athlete
the “rhythm of the legs” in the discus.
 This drill is very good for teaching athletes the
importance of the lower body in the discus
throw, trigger happy throwers who are upper
body dominant will struggle with this drill.
 Drill is great for teaching turn, then lift
 Out of the back/ entry: From the wind to the “south
African” position, until the athlete leaves single
 Flight phase: from the time the athlete leaves the
ground until the time the athletes foot regains
contact with the ground
 Middle: from the time the athletes foot regains
contact with the ground (the “half turn/wheel”
position) until the athlete is back in double support
(the power position)
 Front: from the time the athletes back foot reaches
the ground (double support) to the point of release
(finish). Commonly referred to as power position
Full throw (the wind)
 Matter of preference and
comfort for the athlete at
higher levels.
 For beginners, the more
simplistic the better.
 Wind must be relaxed
allowing for a loose
trailing throwing arm.
 The implement should
feel like its “hanging”
behind the athlete
Full throw (the entry)
Entry/single support/sweep
Take off/flight phase/middle
Right foot contact/double support
Hip turn/ block
Finish/ reverse/ recover
Important points to stress
 Slow to fast “50 to 100”
 “Sprint out of the back”
 Upper body patience until the non-dominant
foot touches the ground.
Suggestions for training early in the
 Release drills
 Non-reverse stand throws
 Non-reverse half turns
 Non-reverse full throws
Stressing the non-reverse
 The non-reverse forces the athlete to learn to use
their legs.
 The reverse is an easy way for a talented athlete
to cheat the technique.
 My athletes take 75%+ non-reverse throws
 For this reason the non-reverse throw is a great
training tool, heavily utilization of this technique
is beneficial in many ways!
Questions? [email protected]

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