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Throwing Assessment and Improvements

Quarantine is deep and there is plenty of time to analyze, assess and plan. Numerous thoughts are rolling through your brain as you focus on varying ways to improve training but in reality, there seem to be 100 different directions. Is there a step by step method you can take to improve your throws career and lead to a championship career? How can you analyze every aspect of training and develop a full-blown plan? Find out today!

Let’s Be Real!

Everyone has room to improve. Most high school and collegiate athletes KNOW for a fact there is plenty of room for improvement but they are lost in the details. The training world is big, there are so many different factors that go into throwing far and it creates a very confusing place of where to start.

Throwers love to get caught up in the small discussions. Should you spin or glide? If you spin, should you spin like Crouser or spin like Tom Walsh? If you glide, should you glide like Ralf Bartels or David Storl? With lifting, should you squat ass to grass or partial squats? What about Olympic lifts, should you do Olympic lifting or just powerlifting? Should you throw heavy or light shots or just stick with the competitive implement? Should you reverse in the discus or non-reverse.

The questions are never-ending. There are so many variables, so many discussions, so many ideas, so much information. Where the heck can an athlete start? It’s even harder to start now without an actual coach! What can a young thrower do?

How to Start

My number 1 recommendation? Pick up the Ultimate Throwers Assessment today!

This isn’t because Trevor and I wrote, this is because it’s an incredible resource! It guides a thrower through the entire process. Don’t take my word for it either, check out this review:

"Dane and Trevor have put together a first-class Assessment Guide for throwers of all ages. I cannot imagine a more comprehensive and easy to follow publication for young throwers looking for guidance on how to achieve next-level results. The matrices included giving fun, informative, and quantitative tools that allow the user to see where they stack up, and what they need to work on to achieve desired results. I would recommend this to any parent, mentor, athlete, or coach looking for ways to improve. The Ultimate Throwers Assessment will highlight your strengths, and more importantly showcase where improvement needs to be made, and how to go about achieving those benchmarks. 10/10"

- Ray Robinson

Back to the starting point. There are many specific questions to ask yourself as a thrower. The biggest question can’t be, “How far do I want to throw?”

In fact, the biggest question you MUST ask yourself is, “How many days a week do I want to throw and lift and am I capable of doing this for 4-5 years straight?”

After you answer that question, you will be able to attack your issues with specifics. It’s important to sit down and jot down all of your data. Think about your college searches and how your school counselor might have you write down majors and school size, geographic location, class size, etc. Take this skill and use it for your own training.

  • How many days a week do I throw currently?

  • How many days a week do I lift currently?

  • What are my PR’s in shot put and discus?

  • What are my PR’s in the strength lifts?

  • What are my PR’s in the Olympic lifts?

As you work through these various questions, you are able to really sit down and look at points of weakness and points of strength. Once the data is tracked, it’s important to analyze how “relative” your lifts and your throws are in comparison to your personal bests. Do you bench 400lbs but only power clean 200lbs? Do you clean 400lbs but only throw 50 feet?

If you can relate to the struggling analysis of metrics, read further!

Practical Application

Throughout the Ultimate Throwers Assessment, we dive into various topics of competition, throwing, weight lifting, mobility, nutrition, mental preparation. Anything and everything you can think of. As of this week, we have already received a few discussions on the best methods to use when moving on from the assessment. For this, we will use a few hypothetical situations.


Question: Dane, my bench press number is very high as is my squat but my cleans and snatches are low. What does this mean?

Answer: This could mean a few things but let’s keep it simple. If your “strength movements” (as defined in the book) are optimal but your Olympic Lifting is weaker, then we should take that at face value. It’s time to add some more frequency into your Olympic lifts! If you question the validity of Olympic Lifting, check out our podcast with UNC coach, Amin Nikfar where he talks about Olympic lifts adding 9 feet to his PR!

Question: Dane, my numbers for the throws predict me as a mid-major Division 1 thrower. My squat is incredible but my bench and snatch are pathetic. How can I get into the Power Five level?

Answer: Many factors come into play with this. It’s important to understand that to become a Power Five thrower, you need to be well rounded with good grades and solid distances in both events. If your bench is weak and your Olympic lifting isn’t great, I would recommend pushing a program to focus on those lifting aspects while also taking more technically-minded throws! As your process improves, so too will your throws.

Question: Dane, I don’t really think about technique and don’t do mobility work and I still throw 60 feet as a junior. Do I need to do that stuff?

Answer: Yes….you do. It’s that simple. Every single athlete can get better. If you are an elite thrower, it doesn’t mean your work is done. The best of the BEST STILL do mobility work, they still focus on technique and they still have hard practices. If you are a 60 foot junior, perhaps you add those aspects and all of a sudden, you are hitting 65-70! These are keys to becoming the BEST possible version of yourself and it is laid out quite clearly in The Ultimate Throwers Assessment.

Get to Work

Some of the biggest faults behind most throwers tend to be the inability to just get to work. Throwers love to “talk shop” and argue about the nitty-gritty while their precious training time dwindles. A program that addresses all aspects of elite training is crucial for positive, long-term development. As the process is improved, the throws improve and the general well-being of the thrower improves. There are countless aspects that go into developing into the BEST version of yourself and there is no better time to begin than today!

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