|Aggression is vital when pushing to the max.|
Below is a great article I read in AMERICAN TRACK AND FIELD by John Godina. John really hits the mark. Our public education system here in the U.S.A. has become a monument to political correctness in many localities, fortunately there are also some exceptional areas of excellence also for those who are willing to fight back. In throwing and lifting technique is so important that we sometimes forget the role of pure aggression. For years the Russians and Bulgarians dominated the international lifting arena as the Asian nations are now. It was not and is not their superior techniques that set them apart, but their unworldly strength and mental attitude. Never forget that throwing is a combat sport with it's roots in warfare. It is menat to be performed with aggression. How this is personified will vary greatly among individuals and cultures, but aggression is the spark that sets off the explosion of power that is applied through efficient technique. Thanks for the reminder John! I will insert some commentary in yellow.
The Key to Success in Throwing is... AGGRESSION!
The common perception of non-contact sports is somewhat distorted with regards to the need for aggression, and nowhere does this hold more true than in the throwing sports. Unlike any other non-combat sport, success in the throwing events is directly proportional to the amount of controlled aggression an athlete can put into the throw. (You bet!)Unfortunately for athletes (although fortunately in the case of the general population), most of society’s rules, regulations and policies are designed to limit aggressive behavior in people. This education in emotional control is a benefit to society as whole since we don’t really need people being indiscriminately punched in the face; but for athletes, learning to release aggression at opportune times and in productive ways can create incredible and often unexpected performances. (I have seen amazing things happen when an athlete has said, "I'm Mad". Of course anger is no substitute for preparation, but it can enhance it)Many young athletes have been overtaken by a steady, lurching flow of timidity that has eaten away their competitive edge. Because of the constant influx of competition-crushing, never-feel-bad, pad-every-corner-and never-keep-score leadership, young athletes today actually need to be taught to compete and not feel bad about winning. Strangely enough, the powers that be seem to be doing a great job of teaching young athletes to not feel bad about losing. ( Pretty perceptive for someone who does not work in the "system", unfortunately, he is right.)Three simple rules can really help a young athlete learn to compete. 1. Create a competition every day. 2. Try your hardest to succeed. 3. Fail every day until you succeed.
That may sound simple. But putting it into practice and making it work is demanding. It requires constant, intense effort during every minute of every workout, from the coach as well as the athlete. This can take some getting used to. Read on:
1. Create a competition every day– To begin learning to compete you must have a competition in the first place. This is easy enough. Each week an athlete’s training ebbs and flows according to his or her training program. Some days are designated for hard throwing. Some days are designated for hard lifting. Some days are for running or jumping. Likewise, each day usually has components of all of these activities integrated at some point. What if at every possible point we create a challenge? Whether it be how far you can throw a shot over your head or how far you can jump on three consecutive single leg hops, each challenge you face as an athlete – no matter how small – teaches you to prepare your mind for the moment and to not fear failure. (This simple key can change the whole complexion of the workouts)2. Try your hardest to succeed– This rule creates, sometimes for the first time, the need for self-awareness in the athlete. Athletes have to be able to truly know themselves and assess their effort, plan of attack and focus. A coach can encourage, challenge or create stress to help an athlete succeed, but only the athlete can know if he or she has done everything in their power to succeed. At first, most athletes will accept inferior effort and performance as maximal. Usually this is because almost everyone else has accepted—or even applauded—that level of commitment from them (see column 1, paragraph 3) therefore it is comfortable to be sub-maximal. Maximal effort is difficult. It takes concentration, commitment to the moment and investment in the process. It also explores the boundaries of the athlete’s abilities, which most people are not comfortable knowing. However, the only way to move beyond a personal limit is to know your limitations. Without this selfawareness, progress is subjective and
Control of a competitive situation is merely a psychological construct grounded in the shifting sands of momentary feelings of ill-conceived self-satisfaction. So how can athletes be sure they have tried their hardest? They fight. Every day, in every challenge, during every set, on every sprint, in every bound, on every throw they have to fight with all their mind and body to accomplish the goal of the moment. They learn where their boundaries are today and break through them tomorrow. How do they find the boundaries? (In throwing and lifting measurement is inherent, it's all about kilos and meters)3. Fail every day until you succeed– Without failing every day in something athletes will never know themselves or teach themselves to succeed. The goal is to mark the distance, record the weight, check the time and beat it. Record the results today and beat it again the next time. Two weeks of trying will only make the victory sweeter. Investing in victory is dangerous to the meek of heart. There is always the chance that an athlete gives everything they have in the pursuit of a dream and comes up short. However, the reward for their efforts is not found in the victory or the record. The reward comes from going out on a limb, putting all their eggs in one basket, bravely risking dreaded failure and, above all, learning to give all of themselves. With so many young people today learning to not compete it’s nice to know that what we learn in sport will serve us so well in life. (Great insight. We need to eliminate the fear of failure, not by lowering expectations, but by teaching the rules of success)John Godina is a three-time world champion and two-time Olympic medalist in the shot put and the best shot put–discus combi- nation thrower in history. He founded and operates the John Godina World Throws Center at Athletes’ Performance in Phoenix. Reach him at www.Worldthrowscenter. Com, www.Athletesperformance.Com or (480) 449-9000.
Koji gets after it Samarai style!!!