Author Topic: Throwers training  (Read 2388 times)

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Throwers training
« on: February 21, 2018, 08:21:04 pm »
Saw this post on FB from a Peter Ingleton and thought it was worth posting here:

For several months back in 2007-2008, I engaged in an ongoing correspondence with an experienced European shot put coach (who shall remain unidentified, so don't ask), asking him questions and getting his comments on a variety of issues. I have decided to post a selection of his responses to me that some of you might find interesting or thought provoking. Some are quite specific to shot putting, while others would apply to a variety of throwing events and indeed other strength and power sports, although the context of his remarks must always be kept in mind. If you change the context, for example, an athlete who is not throwing for an hour or so 4-6 times a week, some of his ideas would no longer apply, and he would be the first to acknowledge this fact. It is essential to understand that most elements of training exist in relation to other parts of the program or system.

Please understand that this is not an article written as a single piece, but the result of an ongoing dialogue of questions and comments, followed by a reply, followed by follow-up questions and additional comments, etc. Also, many of these comments are very opinionated and some are probably controversial in one way or another to various people, but this was someone with very significant experience at the elite level of throwing so keep that in mind. I am merely sharing this, not promoting his ideas or methods in any way.

Comments welcomed for the purpose of discussion. Please excuse the formatting.

[With respect to the Timmermann on Shot Put document]

This programme you refer to is probably correct in
most of its parameters. Whether it was used for the
Seoul Olympics I'm not sure. It does look like the
weightlifting scheme many DDR throwers used with a few
changes here and there. The repetitions and sets used
are correct.

I'm not sure about the shotput training though, I have
seen other things done with the shot that are not
there, like light shot training ,weightvest training and

The weightlifting programme was a hybrid between a
traditional weightlifting programme and a special
exercise regime, meaning that every exercise used was
there to resemble as much as possible a certain part
of the throw the trainers thought was very important.
The behind the neck jerk was used to strengthen the
blocking leg (this leg came to the front for the
jerk), to make the legs/hips explosive and to keep the
arm, shoulder back when throwing. So a front jerk for
example would destroy the last point and would be less

The squat was replaced by the half squat because it
was more effective in making the legs work as in the
throw. If the thrower needed more general leg work, he
would also perform full squats, but this surely wasn't
Timmermann's case. The critical point here is time
under tension. When doing full squats, no matter how
fast you squat, it is a long process. The brain has to
understand it has to be as quick as possible and this
is better done with half squats, even if they are so
heavy that the extension takes the same time as the
full squat! And if done intensely, they can only be
done once a week, twice is too much. If you have room
for recovery, use it for throwing.

Weights were used to stimulate and imitate, the training
sessions weren't endless, only short and powerful.
Front squats are great for the quads, but they injure the wrists
and don't hit the back, so they are a less productive
exercise left for those that have very strong backs
but lack quad strength.

For bench pressing, everything that I said about
squatting is true here too, so it was done with a pad
and a bounce to make it explosive and done with the
block leg on top of the bench and the back leg down on
the ground pushing to resemble the last part of the

The snatch has its place in training for 2 reasons:
It's the athletic movement with the most power output
along with shotputting, and if used correctly it can
engage the hip muscles which are the most important
muscles for throwing in a very explosive way. The first
reason is useless to a shotputter, because he shotputts daily.
So, the trainers came up with a variation that
used the hips very explosively.

Timmermann's style was a style
of throwing that needed very strong legs and hips and
light upper body that only transferred the power, sort
of like in weightlifting. Now, Timmermann was a rower
before becoming a thrower and 2 things happened:
He was already doing snatches and was very strong at them
so he got too strong and got injured by them in the wrists and
doing them differently and could not do the hip snatch correctly.

The weird jump he was doing was nothing other than a
variation that used the hips and back more AND
resembled the very start of the throw where he coils
and uncoils and springs to the toeboard! It was a
weird kangaroo jump and he was strong, so high reps
were the deal or he would injure himself, plus this
was more a weighted drill than a weight exercise, I
think it was performed after throws and not with the
rest of the weightlifting. Also, remember, from the
waist down it's ok to add mass, it lowers your center of
gravity and makes your balance better!

The upper body in this style is used only as a
lever, to transfer power and release the shot - remember
the era it was about 10-12 years from the drop of the
press from weightlifting. When weightlifting press was
dropped many things happened the scientists weren't
expecting. The athletes got a bit better (generally) in
the jerk and a LOT better in the snatch! A glide
although as a movement resembles the clean and jerk, as
a rhythm resembles the snatch. IF you succeed and make
it one movement without delay in the middle, all you do
is transfer power from the legs and hips to the bar
and if it's continuous it's very economical!

The Germans used the throwers as Formula 1 cars. They
developed a theory and realized it on them. Each car is
better than the last because each time a fault of the
former theory was corrected and strong points became

Beyer was anti-economical and the analogy to a clean
and press, huge power, non continuous movement. The
result was great but there were many injuries. If not
for injuries I am sure absolutely he would still own a
WR around 23.60 or so only because he was so strong
and powerful.

Timmermann couldn't become stronger but was lighter
so they had to make the glide more like a snatch and
he was perfect for that. This weight training and theory
isn't for everyone, it was tailored for him only. There
was so much more to their training than what's in this
paper and the German scientists always came up with
something new as were their Soviet and other European

The key is which of these fit your individual
athlete, do what makes your athletes feel better and
perform better and this, each coach has to learn for
himself because only he can see the athlete. This is the
quality of a good coach, he's like the chameleon, changes
things around and finds what suits each athlete best. But what
Timmermann then produced with Werner Goldmann will
probably be unparalleled...

[Regarding Bondarchuks training methodologies and
his comments regarding minimum strength levels required
by world-class throwers]

Bondarchuk has a very different view from mine on
weight training. He likes special strength with special
exercises like twists for more reps. He sets some
numbers in mind and as goals and that's it. What does
it mean a 160k bench is enough? That he'll have the
athlete go up to there and not push more?
In my book, in the weight room you go for the personal
record like in the ring. I don't care if it's for 1 rep
or for 20, you give it 100%. I agree with Abadjiev
school of thought. No percentages, no tempo, no loading
and deloading. 100% all the time creates adaptation.

A lot of coaches believe in higher reps to relieve the
CNS of the extra tension and give tendons a break. I
have seen it work in powerlifting exercises but not on
weightlifting exercises. It could be ok if the athlete
responds well to this kind of programme, as a coach you
have to try and see what's right for every athlete. I
have said again a good coach is like a good tailor. The
costume has to be custom made.

I do agree some athletes don't need to be extra strong
to throw far, nevertheless you have to make them as
strong as possible.

[Regarding possible stagnation from the continual use of
near-maximum weights and the importance of specific
training adaptations]

There is a vast difference between a simple lift like
the squat and a technical lift like the snatch.
If you lift at more than 90% in the squat for a long
time it might lead to stagnation, and you could
substitute high intensity squat training with high
intensity box squat training or a different exercise
every 2-3 weeks like Simmons advocates.
But you cannot do that with the snatch or the shot or
any technical lift that is based on skill and not
power. The technical movement is different for each and
every strength percentile, that means that a 80% snatch
isn't a 100% snatch seen on video at 80% of the
playing speed. Some parts get faster, some don't and the
result is that the body adapts to a different exercise
altogether!!! This is why the Bulgarian system is so
successful, because the athletes train the way they

Training sessions are a rehearsal for meet day
first, then a preparatory stage for the meet.
Meet day isn't for doing max singles for the first could work for squats (I doubt it...the
Eastern Europeans still beat the Westsiders in
squatting, and squatting deep and legally that is) but
it doesn't for snatches or shots.

As for weight training and all boils
down on which tool you use and for what. Bondarchuk
likes to use weight training for explosive training
and special strength training.
Both of those can be accomplished in a much
better way with heavy implements.
A fast bench with 160k moved at 2m/sec cannot (how
can it?) teach the arm of a shotputter to be explosive
because he has to move the shot at 14m/sec...and it
all comes down to training specificity again (the
Bulgarian system).

If I have a slow armed shotputter, I have him throw
the 5k and the 6k. Period. Moving the arm at 15m/sec
will give you a faster CNS response. A 8k or 9k will
give you more strength for the shot, much better than a
bench press.

The weights for me are hypertrophy and CNS
stimulating tools. And there is no better tool for
those two than weights. Hypertrophy comes with 3-5 reps
and CNS stimulation with max attempts. All done for max
intensity. Max attempts are the key to adaptation, or
else you either adapt to a useless stimulus or need
too many sets for a non-bodybuilder to create
hypertrophy (no 25 sets per bodypart here).

[Regarding the design of practice sessions and throwing intensity]

The training sessions should resemble a
competition. This means that there's a
warmup, non-specific and specific with the shot, a
couple of warmup standing throws and then the session
begins. Depending on the daily goal, it could be
standing throws with a light implement or a heavier
one, the movement might change but after warmups I
expect full intensity throws.

The problematic points of the movement are analyzed on
video and viewed and reviewed mentally, shown to the
athlete in another session where we stay just the two
of us inside a room and watch the video. At the same
time I have him see the problem and ask him then and
there to do the correct movement without an implement
or let's say with throwing a towel wrapped up. We do
this until what needs to be changed becomes
clear. Sometimes, we go right away to the ring and
throw a light implement, first to only do the movement
correctly and then do it intensely. Then I give the
standard implement. We do it again, starting with the
movement only and adding intensity.

A technical change that cannot happen at full
intensity is a useless attempt. The thrower has to be
able to do this at 100%. Most of the times, it is
understood and done in the very first training
session, but be aware that I now only work with
advanced athletes. Nevertheless, it works great too with
less advanced and less kinesthetically aware

Regarding his earlier comment on the inclusion of box squats
in the lifting rotation]

With box squats I refer to the Westside squat which is
a quite good leg exercise. The other exercise I also refer
to as half squats or bench Squats, as done by the East Germans.
The box squat is a good exercise but should only be
used as an exercise for special purposes such as to
improve reaction or build glute strength. It has a few major
drawbacks for throwers, one is that at no point during the throw
is there the luxury to lose and regain your center of gravity,
it should always be right over your legs and easy to control
with them and the second is that during the throw there is
no luxury for the glutes and quads/hams to work without
the calf muscles. We work on our toes and the box squat
might teach you otherwise. Also, we jump with the quads
and not the glutes because we cannot bend our backs
during jumping and throw at the same time. And many
more. The point is that the box squat teaches a
movement never done during throwing. If you see it
as a good glute exercise fine, but I think the
good morning is better...

[Regarding the importance of lifting with maximum intensity
within the desired repetition range]

My belief is that the CNS stimulation that happens
with weight training during a max attempt with max
weight is greater than the stimulation during a max
attempt with max power. I find the need for a maximal
stretch useless if this max stretching does not lead to a
maximum contraction. Having a maximal myotatic
reflex without a maximal contraction is like teaching the
arm to reverse and start a movement and leaving the job
unfinished. Unless the weight is maximal, a maximal
contraction following a maximal stretching will lead
the athlete to release the weight, thus leading to the
need of bands or something similar that do defeat the
purpose of weight training for throws! Because we
train to accelerate a given weight and not keep a given
speed for an increasing weight as leverages get favourable.
I agree with most DDR findings but they are not gospel
to me.

[Regarding the disadvantages of using full squats during the
pre-competitive period]

The problem for me with using full squats during the
last 3 months before competition is that I have seen
again and again that it slows the throwers down. The
quads should not wait for a full stretch or for help
from the glutes or hams in order to fire. Never will
this ever happen during a throw.

I have played many times with the idea of training my
throwers from the waist down like oversized
jumpers, using half squats, half squat jumps, one leg
jumps to and from boxes, etc. It's much better than to
train them as weightlifters. Weightlifters aren't fast
enough to throw.

[Regarding huge overhead throw results]

Remember, this is a different movement, you don't
have to be a world class shotputter, discus or hammer
thrower to throw big on these. I personally know of
3 hammer throwers that have thrown 23m and one
of them threw 65m in the hammer. Beyer and Gunthoer
certainly never achieved their true max on these as they
had some major back injuries and surgeries...

[Regarding lifting program design]

Generally the top weight is the goal. Once it's
achieved the workout ends. Repeating it is worthless
because there's no additional stimulus. The only reason
would be for me that the last max was done in bad form
and thus I "disqualify" it.

The series might look like :
120x3, 150x3, 180x3, 210x3, 230x3, 250x3, 260x3,
record attempt x3.

I always try to increase the level of preparedness of
my athletes and increase the starting weight. My best
athletes start squatting with 180k.

I believe in the conjugate system as a principle, that
is, I rotate exercises. Every single one of the weight
training exercises covers a weak area, so box squats are
no different. Of course its use in the rotation would
be once per year for a normal athlete, I use the half
squat, half front squat, step-up, full front squat, full
back squat, lunge, box squat in that order of

I generally avoid exercises where the hands hold a
barbell as they tax the CNS too much, so I prefer the
good morning and hyperextension to any kind of
deadlift. Remember, I mostly train the shotput.
I also never prescribe "Olympic movements", they have
nothing to offer. A movement slower than the actual
throw won't make you faster and the lack of a negative
part makes them useless for hypertrophy. Faster hips
can be achieved with sprinting, standing broad jumps
and overhead throws. Hypertrophy can be achieved with
good mornings and hyperextensions. No room for anything
else. I want none of my throwers to synchronize the hip
extension with an arm pulling and shoulder shrugging motion.
The only "Olympic movement I use is the jerk, which is a
great movement for the legs mostly.

[Regarding the use of Dynamic Effort lifting for throwers]

You assumed right, a "dynamic" effort day is useless to
a thrower, any kind of weight training cannot make you
move faster than the actual throw. If one needs to be
faster, then more light throws are in order and even
more heavy throws. More throws in general I'd say.

[Recommendations regarding the use of squat jumps
and step-ups]

Half squat jumps are used in the last 2-3 weeks before
a major competition, they activate the CNS very
well, too well I could say so they lead to overtraining
very quickly, at least for us heavier throwers. A
typical regimen would be 5-7 sets of 3-4 reps with
between 50-100% of bodyweight.

Step-ups are also very good for that period of time. I
have most of my gliding shotputters do lunges for the
right leg and step-ups for the left, blocking leg the
last 2 weeks. Then I only care for special strength. I
have the athletes step loudly on the step, I want to
hear a big sound and a quick load that resembles the

[Explanation of why he moved away from using most Olympic
lifts in his advanced shot put training programs]

Training knowledge is dynamic. I abandoned
Olympic lifts totally because I figured something's
wrong about them but couldnt put my finger on it.
These lifts are usually good enough only for beginners
to understand that the power comes from the legs and
to teach the legs to push.
It was a time I believed in no plyos of any kind and
still don't think highly of them, but they do have a
small place in the conjugate system.

I was always very careful of their CNS stimulating and
fatiguing properties and only appreciating their
special strength properties.
I also valued them for much different
reasons than the usual. Because they resembled a
throwing stance, because of the leg reaction after the
catch and because of the overall power production
properties, not because they teach you to be fast"...
In the meantime I found much better tools for my work.

I also hate the idea of confusing the athlete (and me)
with teaching them the correct technique. A mind can do
3 things well, 2 things very well, and 1 thing only
really well. I only want my athletes mind to be
concerned with one technique only and that is of the
shotput. Olympic movements have to be shown and done
correctly or else they are really counterproductive
and injury inducing.

I really like to give a programme to my athletes, watch
their training once and then after that only ask them
to do exercise X for Z sets and Y reps, without expert
supervision. I really avoid exercises that must be done
technically right or have an inherent danger when the
weight gets very high which will inevitably happen
with my system.

To give you an example I might even have my athletes
do step-ups and incline presses on a smith machine with
top end weights in order to avoid any balance loss. In
the weight room I don't work balance, but mostly prime

The DDR snatch is a variant I still use but as a high
pull without a catch and only as a hip strengthening
exercise. Useful as a special tool but not the
cornerstone of workouts.

If I was to train other throwers my ideas would be
different of course, and I do believe they have a very
important place for the hammer and a good role maybe
for discus and javelin. But these events don't interest
me much and I spend no time researching for them.

[Comments regarding the Highland Games and possible
training differnces compared to the T&F throwing events]

Highland games seem very interesting to me.
The main difference I see is that you have to
completely change the way you handle the ground.
I would probably favour non-reverse throwing of the
stones and add a lot of deadlifts of all kinds, fast, slow,
low pulls, high pulls, and a lot of special strength training
with the implements.

The problem (for me) here is you have to be an
all-around athlete and cannot choose to drop pulling
movements in case you want to be competitive overall.
So a lot of pulling strength and a lot of rotational
torso work would be imperative (the latter also is for
the shot).

The main lesson here I believe, as in strongman, is that
you have to train more with the actual implements than
to weight train, as evidenced by inferior athletes of
today performing much better than some monsters of the
past, just because they train the events. Today's
athletes don't prepare for competition with
bench/deadlift/squat anymore but have actual strongman
equipment gyms.

Because of the very heavy nature of Highland Games I
would even toss with the idea of only training the
events first for a couple of months and then add a
basic deadlift/pushpress workout for 10 sets each for
triples once a week and after another couple of months
add another weekly clean & jerk workout for another
10-15 singles. Basic, all around training stuff.

[Regarding whys some form of squat was not included
in the HG training program outlined above]

In the programme I gave you, there is a squat, during
the clean and jerk. It starts from the floor and even
if the bar is caught high after the clean, then do a
front squat before the jerk...a very taxing exercise and
the best single one (I agree with Feuerbach here).

[Some follow-up points regarding the use of Olympic lifts]

Olympic lifts are something I've changed my mind about
and definitely something I've given a lot of thought to.
It's obvious that at the final stages before a big meet I like
more special exercises, or so to say to make basic exercises
"more special".

It's easy to see that a snatch or clean plays a very
different role for the hammer thrower than it does for the
shotputter, right? It's a special exercise, a strengthening
exercise, an agility exercise even an essential exercise,
more so if done with a close grip or with the bar next to
your right or left side instead of to the front.

The part about being too dangerous on top weights
doesn't affect them too much, because apart from the
jerk, you can freely drop the bar any time, a technique
the athlete has to be shown from day one.

[Regarding the use of bands or chains by throwers]

As for the use of bands, I believe maximum effort
during the entire range of motion isn't what we're looking
for, it's maximum acceleration. I'm sure extra slow reps,
or should I say...hmm...0,6,1,6 reps per Poliquin would
result in even more uniform and extreme effort during
the entire lift. The stretch reflex could be triggered a bit
more with chains and bands but I'm sure it's triggered
much better if you control the bar half way down and
then just drop it from there on your chest and quickly
reverse the movement...which is something throwers do
for half a century or more...correct?

Has Simmons or anyone tried to use the Tendo unit to
see if a 400 pound bench bar is lifted faster by the same
athlete when used in tandem with bands or pressed
ballistically with a drop and pad? How do you think the
bar would go up faster?

[Regarding the relative importance of bar speed when lifting]

I don't care too much about measures of power.
I tell you again, total power is unimportant - it's not
important how long it took for the thrower to take the
shot from point A to point's the velocity that the
shot goes through point B that matters!!! The shot
could as well have ups and downs in velocity and the
power might be very high, but the velocity of the shot
when it leaves the hand is what's important!!!

[Regarding training to improve speed]

My feeling about weight training for being faster is
this: It does make you faster by making muscles stronger
and their contraction faster. But throwing is a skill:
in order to become faster at a skill you have to do
the excact same thing, only faster. Period.

Race car drivers often "train" with a faster car to
improve their reflexes, how useful would it be for a
Formula 1 driver to train using a bus? Very different
stimulus, very slow speed. As the stimulus gets nearer
and the speeds are faster, it might help you more...
it's like that with the throws...a jerk might be better than
a clean and a clean better than a squat, to "teach
you" do the shotput faster than it is, but how can it be
compared to actually throwing the shot at a higher speed?

If you drive your car at 100kph and that's your
limit, what could make you go faster? Something that's
faster than your car that either pulls or pushes you right?
Anything going at less than 100kph cannot help you go
faster. The outside stimulus has to be faster. I cannot
explain it more or better than this.

Runners have someone pull them with an elastic
rope, throwers throw lighter implements, swimmers use
flippers...yet they all weight train for hypertrophy and
strength...not faster skill.

[Regarding the use and importance of plyometrics]

Plyometrics have value, but it's something the athletes
have a really different and very varying tolerance level to.
Some can get injured and some exhausted by them way
before they become effective. In general, I've
found the athlete has to be doing them since the initial
training stages, if the athlete's already advanced then they
don't help much. Only for CNS toning and some limited
special exercise use perhaps.

[Additional Thoughts on Plyometrics]

I went through a phase of not believing in plyos
because I personally was not the typical case of how
throwers were developed in Eastern countries. I didn't
start throwing at age 10 and did not start plyos
early enough for my structure to grow along while
doing plyometric training.

My growing was pretty much done when I started
throwing (16 years old) and my early trainer didn't
believe in them either so by the time I found out what
they could do they were worthless for me.

They also were worthless because I had a natural
talent in jumping without actually doing them at all,
which made me very adamant on how worthless they
were! I could out-jump high jumpers and triple jumpers
who were jumping all day long and weighed half what I
did while I was only jumping when we had our matches
together. To this day this is still my best argument on
the worthlessness of them as a general tool of building
"jumping ability" with idiotic programmes of endless
jumps...and I was not alone in this.

The best jumping ability I have come across was the
ability of Yuryi Vardanian, the famous 85kg weightlifter
on the late 70s who could do standing broad jumps at
4.10m!!! Guess how many jumps he did in his

Vardanian was able to outjump the high jump WR holder
Jachenko (who jumped 2.38m with a straddle and had
perhaps the most incredible jumping ability of all
athletes of all time) in the standing
triple jump by a whole meter, although Jachenko's hips
were about as high as Yuryi's nipples...

Both Yuryi and I could do triple our bodyweight in squats
and lift four times as much in half-squats and this
was enough.

This aside, in the last few weeks a few jumps with
high intensity can really excite the nervous system
and this is how I use them. After training, 5-6 maximum

[Some Thoughts on the value of Dynamic Effort Training]

Indeed, fast reps as in "DE" days do create a lot of
muscle tension. BUT:

a) They also teach deceleration of the bar at the end
of the movement unless bands are used which also
beats the purpose of accelerating through the rep.

b) The CNS stress of near max or max reps just isn't
there and this includes muscle stress of synergistic
muscles, not just the protagonists.

c) I have personally found that in training cycles I
have used them (I always try to use any idea I come
across and then decide) the throwing result was

The last reason alone is enough for me.

I think max attempts are better for creating muscle
tension, training reps to failure (4-8 reps) are better
and even what Hatfield calls CAT reps with 80% are
much better (and more throws specific). That is if you
have a reason to avoid max reps.

The nervous system has to know that if I start the
engine, the engine will have to work at 100% every

[More on the Olympic lifts, power, and technique]

In an earlier post I told you I might use Olympic
lifts for beginners to teach them that power comes
from the legs. Explosive reps of any kind, in Olympic
lifts or any exercise that is.

After understanding that, throwing is a skill.
Figure skaters, divers and dancers don't get faster by
doing squats@60% or Olympic lifts. They do the same
thing again and again and they try to do it faster and faster
and whether be it more concentration, ropes pulling you
with more speed, or whatever, you have to actually try to
do the skillfaster and faster in order it faster!!!
Throwers are no different.

Yes, in the shotput power is the name of the game but
when it comes to the skill part of it, we do a complex
movement with a shot in our hands just as the
calisthenics athlete does somersaults with a ball in
her lap. In the weightroom our workouts are different but
in the movement learning process the principles are the
same. Many reps, great concentration, good coaching

[How Heavy is Too Heavy?]

There is a point of diminishing returns in maximum
reps. This is when the bar is too heavy to move.
Our task is to accelerate a moving object, not try to
move a stationary object!!!

If the bar stops, the CNS stress is too much and you had
better not train the next day or expect much from this
training session.

Our maximum is different than a powerlifter's
maximum. It's not more than 5-10 kilos less, but I don't
want to see bad form, twisted knees and spines, eyes
bulging, fainting, bleeding noses and missed reps.
Our place to give our last percentage of sweat, tears
or even blood is the throwing ring!!! Not the weight room.

That said, if I see less than 100% commitment in the
weight room, I lose interest in the athlete.

[Training for Performance vs. Maximum Possible Strength]

Timmermann of course did not train for strength for
strength's sake, he trained for strength to throw farther!!!
He trained the way throwers should train in my opinion,
with few, infrequent, intense sessions that have a direct
analogy and impact on what you want to do in the ring.

If Timmermann wanted a better bench press, he could
havedone shoulder presses, triceps exercises, bench
press variations, upper-back exercises etc. etc., like
powerlifters do. On the contrary, he didn't train the
bench for benching strength, he just benched to throw
farther! Only that and behind the neck jerks for
upper-body weight lifting!

Weight training sessions lasted an hour and a half,
2-3 times a week - bench once, jerks once, squats and
jumping good mornings twice and that's it!!! And this was
for a 23m glider!!!

Now, look at the weight training sessions of some of
the throwers and even what John Smith prescribes and
you might think he trains 30m shotputters or powerlifters!!!

Look at the simplicity of the programmes of Capes, Albritton,
Woods, Feuerbach and you'll see they trained the basics,
for strength, but strength as a means to an and, not just for
strength!!! I'm sure Capes trained strength differently later
on for powerlifting or Strongman.

[His Own Training Background]

I always liked to train heavy and lot of my influences came from
training for a couple of weeks at the start of my throwing career
with the Bulgarian weightlifting team of the great Abadjiev.

My first and best years I was very deeply influenced by weightlifters
in my training and got really strong. This was a mistake as I now
realize because although it got me a very solid strength base,
it went too far.

If it only takes 5x5 of half squats with 300k, it is foolish to try to
do 360k to the ground as it is much more difficult, it takes too
much energy out of you, makes your legs slower, and your workouts
suffer for a week after that.

But what can I say, when you're 20 and then one morning
a bunch of the best weightlifters ever come into your training hall
and train with the same bar as you and you see things like 90k
athletes putting as many plates on the bar as possible and squatting
for reps, it influences you for life. I was so impressed, I saw them in
my sleep!

I never accepted to give less than 100% of myself and losing a max
attempt was to me something between losing a war and a love
disappointment. From very early I saw myself as my own guinea pig,
a platform of some sort of realising my own theories.

I have a 375k squat max done rock bottom the way weightlifters do
it, with a controlled lowering for half way down and then a drop and
rebound. Try to find videos of Shane Hamman squatting and you'll
know what I'm talking about. It's actually easier to squat this way
instead of the controlled down, explosive up half-squats.

Later on I found that I threw better, my legswere faster in the throw
and I recovered better when I substituted full squats with half-squats,
so I changed to doing my max or about for 3-6 explosive reps. I
eventually found out this was too much also so I reduced the weight,
using about 300k for sets of 5 reps. My last and best approach was
to do front half-squats for singles up to 400k.

With each change I saw improvement and to make sure it was
because of this I changed back to the older version and immediately
went backwards. If we suppose there wasn't a very strong placebo
effect, at least I found what worked best for ME.

My best bench press with a bounce is 272.5k and incline 230k.
Best standing broad jump 3.25m or 3.35m, I cannot remember
exactly now. Best overhead was 22.76m with a 6k which is the
only implement I used. I used overheads as a hip builder and
testing measure of power, a snatch replacement, and as a
shoulder-girdle loosener.

I used the 6k in overheads precisely because I was a very strong
thrower and wanted to become a faster, more agile one.
I sometimes did an overhead workout only with the 6k, throwing it
40-50 times and I hate to admit, these workouts were probably
more productive for my throwing than my early squatting workouts.

[Thoughts on some of the top shot putters and coaches]

I do have to say I admire both Sarul and especially Komar.

I strongly believe Komar is the best example of the glide technique
ever, although I realize that each technique is an adaptation to
one's strong points and one technique is not for all. Still, I have a
video clip I show my athletes to follow and it is the clip of Komar
in ‘72. Everything about this throw is perfect.

With respect to the achievements of Gunthor and Eggert, when
I said "what Timmermann then produced with Werner Goldmann
will probably be unparalled..." I meant that Timmermann was the
best athlete that had been produced in the German system at that
time and that the German system was at its best then. My personal
belief is that Gunthor had even more potential as an athlete than
Timmermann because of his body structure and because of his
mental character.

I have said it before, Gunthor was a very special case. He could not
be intimidated by anyone, he always had to deal with the best of the
best ever and most of the time he came out victorious! He beat all
WR holders - Beyer, Timmermann, Andrei, Barnes and feared nothing.

Eggert was a genius but the German system was a product of many
geniuses put together. Perhaps no other person alone could do as
much in terms of scientific training, but I do think that if Gunthor was
born a bit more to the North he would still hold the WR. So I might
want to rephrase to, "What Goldmann did with Timmermann will be


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Re: Throwers training
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2018, 03:26:12 am »
much gold in there.

incidentally, i remember watching some of the videos of werner gunthor's training years ago. just went back and found them again. they're fun to watch:
Muscles are nonsensical they have nothing to do with this bullshit.

- Avishek

sunday: run 14+ km
monday: lift
tuesday: run 10-12 km
wednesday: run 10-12 km
thursday: run 10-12 km
friday: rest
saturday: run tempo/VO2 max/speed x 6-8 km

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Re: Throwers training
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2018, 09:42:02 am »
Yeah he's a very impressive athlete. I find it interesting how much of the shot performance correlates with lower body jumping power.  I know a guy that trains cricket bowlers in pretty much the same fashion with great success.


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Re: Throwers training
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2018, 07:59:34 am »
Yeah he's a very impressive athlete. I find it interesting how much of the shot performance correlates with lower body jumping power.  I know a guy that trains cricket bowlers in pretty much the same fashion with great success.

oh interesting, i'm actually curious to hear more about that. the motion for bowlers seems even more unnatural than for baseball pitchers, especially spin bowlers who sometimes contort their shoulders in super goofy-looking ways.

incidentally, the fastest bowler ever lives near me. i've met him, he's a hilarious character. lotta 'roids in his training history.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2018, 08:01:12 am by LBSS »
Muscles are nonsensical they have nothing to do with this bullshit.

- Avishek

sunday: run 14+ km
monday: lift
tuesday: run 10-12 km
wednesday: run 10-12 km
thursday: run 10-12 km
friday: rest
saturday: run tempo/VO2 max/speed x 6-8 km

black lives matter


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Re: Throwers training
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2018, 12:11:13 pm »
Yeah bowling in cricket is much more of a full body throw compared to baseball because they're allowed a running start. I don't understand all the rules but from what I gather bowlers typically throw a lot more but don't have near the same amount of elbow and shoulder injuries.  They tend to keep their arm straight and swing it around in an over the top windmill motion without the extreme external rotation of the shoulder and lateral stress on the elbow. 
« Last Edit: February 25, 2018, 12:15:42 pm by Kellyb »


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Re: Throwers training
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2018, 10:36:21 pm »
yeah the elbow has to be straight by rule. but man they still manage to get into some weird positions. for example:

Muscles are nonsensical they have nothing to do with this bullshit.

- Avishek

sunday: run 14+ km
monday: lift
tuesday: run 10-12 km
wednesday: run 10-12 km
thursday: run 10-12 km
friday: rest
saturday: run tempo/VO2 max/speed x 6-8 km

black lives matter