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How to Teach the Spin to Beginners

Teaching throwers how to spin can be a daunting task. Every thrower is starting from a different experience level and they all have different technical and physical abilities. The spin is a very technical movement that looks fast, intricate, and complicated. On top of it all, you might have 20 or more throwers at practice that all need attention, organizing, and kept in line!

How can you possibly have time to teach everyone the spin?!?!

The key is to breakdown the movement so that it is as simple as possible, AND provide concrete tasks that the throwers can self-correct themselves while doing. If the task the throwers are trying to achieve is simple enough for them to fully wrap their heads around, you won't have to coach them up every single throw if your attention is spread across all of your throwers.

So what are the 3 primary tools you can use to teach the spin quickly and as effectively as possible?

1. Mark The Foot Placement On The Circle

The spin is not complicated. The only reason it looks difficult is that when you look at an elite thrower who is rotating at lightning speed without context, it looks like an impossible movement to replicate. In reality, the basic movement of throw is very simple with 2 primary goals (using a right-handed thrower as an example):

  1. Rotate the right leg around the left foot

  2. Rotate the left leg behind the right foot to the front of the circle

Then all you need to do is make sure they are placing their feet at the right spots on the circle. The best method to get beginner throwers to consistently place their feet at the right spots is to simply mark on the circle where they should go with chalk.

When starting the throw at the back of the circle, the feet should be placed a little wider than shoulder-width apart with the toes right up against the back lip of the circle.