Throwing is a strength sport, so by default you need to be strong in order to perform the shot put and discus at the optimum level. At least 50% of your throws training is likely going to be spent in the weight room. When you are at the collegiate level, you figure you are spending about 4 to 5 hours daily training, and of that, you are spending at least half of that time on strength related work.
At Arete Strength, our weight-training program for throwers has our athletes lifting 4 to 5 days a week; it’s intense and designed specifically for throwers. The workouts are an hour on a short day and usually at least 2 hours in length. As we move along the season, it changes, but the focus is always on the throws specific strength levels.
Drills are one of the ways a throwers strength levels are exposed; simply holding the positions and performing the drills will be a challenge for those that lack adequate strength levels.
In the off season, at Arete Throws Nation, our throwers will do 2+ hours a day of weight training for the throws, and 1 hour of drills because we are getting bigger and stronger for the next year, and we are working on footwork and breaking down the throws technique. We will add light throwing in to keep in touch with the technique, and apply what we learn with the drills, but we will not be constantly throwing in the ring. There is no point to constantly throw in the ring if the athlete’s strength levels are not even capable to do drills and this is where I see the caveat of most high school programs
Why the hell would you practice throwing in the ring using the wrong positions, and at half of your strength levels? Strength training for the throws MUST be a focus all year round.
In our Arete Throws Nation Throwing Chain Reaction camps, I can clearly see who has the horsepower and who doesn’t. If you can’t get into a position doing the drills due to your strength weaknesses or imbalances, you most definitely are not going to get into position in the ring, or in competition. THIS WILL HOLD YOU BACK FROM THROWING FAR!
Discus throwers and Shot Putters that do not have basic strength levels to hold their own bodyweight in the PROPER drill positions, will ALWAYS be too weak to throw in the proper position in the ring, and will fail to throw big, because they will always be compensating and thus compromising their ability to do the throw correctly.
Without a well-designed weight lifting program for throwing, you will cap a throwers ability to throw far. If a thrower cannot create the angles, the loading on the legs, and the proper trunk activation they are automatically at a deficit. With that being said, an elite weight training program for throwers is NOT about getting a thrower to look aesthetically big, or how big the numbers are in the weight room! It’s about how strong the athlete is for the actual sport; how the lifting translates into the ring. Therefore the weight programs end goal is to throw far, not just put up big numbers in the weight room.
This is a huge deficit at most high school level programs.
There is a lack of structure, knowledge in the weight room, and how to create a program specifically for throwers.
This is why I offer throws coach training for coaches, so they can dominate in the sport, and create America’s next big throwers!
Some people argue that “some strength training is better than no strength training”, and to some degree I would agree with that, but an improper weight program sets up an athlete to get injured too. I saw this happen twice last year from a high school, and I had to repair and rebuild a thrower, and thankfully he had an outstanding season.
At Arete Throws Nation, our weight lifting program for the throws is truly an elite program on par with the many of the best Division 1 programs, and all of my throwers that go on to a D1 throws programs have a seamless transition. Its not Bragging, its confidence in what I do.
I always get the feedback about Arete Throws Nation athletes from these college coaches, and they really appreciate the work ethic, the lifting knowledge, and the skill level of these freshman throwers.
Remember, when a high school thrower goes to the collegiate level for boys, the implements are 30% heavier, and strength becomes paramount. Due to this fact, all my graduating senior throwers will begin an adjustment to their weight training and drills to better prepare them for the transition to the heavier implement.
The Arete Throws Nation’s weight training program for Shot Putters and Discus Throws is always about programming the nervous system. We do weight lifting to be come a better Thrower, and not just better in the weight room.
You don’t go to a meet and bench in the ring, you throw!!
If you are interesetd in more information about strength training for throws and you live in Southern California:
In Person Training For Coaches and Throwers:
Online Coaching For Coaches and Throwers:
If you want more information about our FALL preseason Throws Camps- Throwing Chain Reaction- CLICK HERE!
– Coach Erik Johnson