Basic Technique for the Shot Put
By: Mark Harsha
Portage High School Girls’ Head Coach

 

Goal One: Shot grip and placement

1. Holding the shot
  • The shot is held at the base of the fingers not the palm
  • The fingers are slightly spread apart with the thumb for support.
  • The hand will be bent back in the cocked position when holding the shot. It looks like you are caring a pizza.
2. Neck placement
  • Raise the shot above your head
  • Lower the shot straight down until it is under your jaw
  • Push the shot into your neck
  • Lift your elbow parallel to the floor. Don’t squeeze your elbow towards your back
  • Check to see that your thumb is pointing down towards your clavicle
  • The palm should be pointing towards the throwing direction

Goal Two: Delivery of the shot

1. Delivery of the shot
  • Eyes to the ceiling
  • Punch the shot away from the neck
  • Keep the elbow high at all times. Lowering the elbow can cause the shot to be thrown like a baseball and could result in an injury
  • Finish the punch with a flip of the wrist
  • The left side of the body will be stopped and locked to help form the block
  • The left arm will be tucked close to the side of the body
2. Drills used to teach the delivery
Wrist flips – Use this drill for proper release of the shot.
  • The thrower will stand facing the sector
  • The thrower starts with the shot above his head in his throwing hand
  • The thrower will flip the shot out of his hand

Two arm putts – Use this drill for proper release of the shot
  • The thrower will stand facing the sector
  • Place the shot in both hands in chest pass position
  • Check that the hands are behind the shot and the thumbs are down
  • Push the shot out with both hands, make sure the elbows stay high
  • Flip the wrists at the end of the throw
  • This throw can also be done with a medicine ball

Arm strike – Use this drill for the arm delivery in the shot.

  • The thrower will be standing tall facing the throwing direction

  • The thrower will place the shot against his neck

  • The thrower will sky the eyes to the ceiling and push the shot away from his neck focusing on driving through the shot towards the throwing area

  • The thrower needs to flip the wrist at the end

Bent knee – Use this drill for the arm delivery in the shot and show the importance of legs
  • The thrower will be facing the throwing direction with bent knees
  • The thrower will place the shot against his neck
  • The thrower will sky the eyes to the ceiling and push the shot away from his neck focusing on driving through the shot towards the throwing area
  • While the thrower is pushing the shot out he/she will push up with the legs extending the hips out

Goal three: power position

1. Body position in the power position
  • The thrower will stand perpendicular to the throwing direction
  • The feet position will be shoulder width apart or a little wider with left foot slightly behind the right foot (toe heel relationship)
  • The right foot will be perpendicular to the throwing direction
  • The thrower needs to be in an athletic position
  • The thrower will shift 80% percent of his/her weight onto the right leg
  • The thrower will twist his/her upper body completely opposite the throwing direction. This position from up above will look like an X
  • The chest, knee and toe should be in line with each other
  • The thrower places the shot into his/her neck
  • The left arm will be extended and out from the body with a right angle relationship to the right elbow
2. Throwing from the power position
  • Over exaggerate the use of the legs in the throw especially the hips
  • Sequence of the throw will be legs - hips - back – arm
  • Push the weight from right leg to the left leg in an upwards direction
  • When driving up with your legs your right heel (hips) needs to be turned out
  • There will be a stretch reflex reaction between your upper body and lower body
  • The upper body will start coming around
  • As your upper body comes around sweep the left arm around and then bring it tight to your body
  • Stop the left side of your body to aid in accelerating the shot
  • Deliver the shot as mentioned above
3. Drills used to teach throwing from the power position

Twists – Use this drill for warm-up and to emphasize the importance of the legs.

  • The athlete faces the sector with toes pointed straight
  • Place shot against the neck
  • Bend the knees
  • Twist the body to the right and down
  • Extend legs and hips then throw as explained in the bent knee drill

1-2 drill – Use this drill to teach the thrower to keep the shot back on the hip.
  • The thrower gets into the power position with a shot against the neck
  • On the command of "one" he opens his left arm to the throwing direction and turns his heel out. Check to see if the shot has stayed in place at the back of the ring
  • On the command of "two" the thrower completes the throw – sling shot effect

Goal four: glide position

1. Body position in the glide

  • Stand at the back of the ring facing away from the throwing direction

  • Place shot against your neck
  • Put your body in an athletic position facing away from the sector
  • Extend your left arm out – relaxed
  • Extend the left leg back towards the toe board
  • Most of the body weight should be on the right leg

2. Gliding into the power position

  • Tap your left leg for balance
  • Draw up the left knee even with the right knee, remember to keep the left leg straight
  • Do not allow your left leg to curl behind the right leg
  • Allow your hips to start to fall
  • Violently extend your left leg towards the toe board, do not lift up with your back
  • Push and then pull your right leg underneath you, it will look like the last part of your body leaving the circle is your right heel

3. Drills used to teach the glide

Hip Fall – Use this drill to teach the hip fall action in the glide

  • The thrower will start in an athletic position with his right hand up against his neck and his left hand extended out in front
  • The thrower will let the hips fall past his heels
  • Once the hips go past the heels he will pull his legs back underneath him

A drill – Use for left leg drive.

  • Start in glide position
  • Drive your left leg towards the toe board close to the ground
  • Straighten your right leg where the only thing is touching is your heel
  • The finished position with your legs will be an upside down Y

Step under – Use this drill for teaching the glide.

  • The athlete will first do an A drill
  • On command the athlete will pull the right leg underneath their body turning the right foot at the same time

Step backs –Use this for teaching the thrower to travel across the ring

  • The thrower will start in a glide position
  • The thrower will take one step back with his/her right leg to the middle of the ring
  • The thrower will then take another step back with the left leg towards the toe board
  • Make sure the shoulders do not come around
  • The thrower should be ready to put the shot

Any questions? email me at mharsha@portage.k12.in.us
 

 


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