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HMMR Podcast Episode 98: Chalk Up (with Reese Hoffa)

Olympic medalist and two-time world champion Reese Hoffa recently retired as perhaps the top shot putter of this century. His longevity and consistency helped him set a record with 138 competitions ever over 21 meters. Since retiring, he has focussed on building up his own throws academy. On this week’s episode he joins us to discuss what helped give him such a long and successful career. In addition, we discuss transitioning to youth coaching, how to individualize technique, building athlete ownership and more. Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 91: Always Compete

Competition is a key to getting better and Pete Carroll has built his coaching philosophy around that. On this week’s episode we take a look in depth at Carroll’s coaching philosophy, its benefits, and its applicability in different settings. Plus we answer another question of the week. Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 79: Deutschland (with René Sack)

Germany is the world’s dominant power in throwing. Despite having just 15% as many citizens as the US, they had twice as many finalists in the throws at this year’s Olympic Games. To get an idea of how the country ticks and trains we spoke with leading coach René Sack. Sack leads a group near Leipzig including two-time World Championship medalist Nadine Müller. On this episode he talks about the German system, programming, priorities in training, and more. Read more

Ranking the Best Throwing Nations

At the end of the day medals are important, but they can be a misleading metric of which countries are powerhouses in the world of throwing. Just a few athletes can lead you to the top of the medal tables, but a true throwing nation is about more than the strength of a few athletes. Therefore, with the help of Nick Garcia, we have once again taken a look at two different metrics to rank the top throwing nations in the world: points totals and number of finalists. The points table is a basic weighted calculation of the top eight finishers in each event. Nick has scored the Olympics as if it were an American high school or university championship: give the top eight places 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 points respectively. The number of finalists is just a basic count of how many athletes each country placed in the top 12 to make it past the qualification round. Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 66: Down Under (with Dale Stevenson)

Former Australian international shot putter Dale Stevenson has switched sides to help the Kiwis as New Zealand’s High Performance Throws Co-ordinator. In this role he is also the coach of Tom Walsh, who won world indoor gold, the Diamond League title, and Olympic bronze this year. He sits down with us this week to share what he has learned in this new role, including his views on talent, technique, and training methods. Read more

The Case for Drills

As a young inexperienced coach it was my goal, like most all coaches, to be the best I possibly could be. The way I figured I was going to do this was by first distinguishing who had the best program and then seeking out the coach of this program. This quest actually began when I started my junior college throwing career. At this time there was no question that coach Art Venegas and the UCLA Bruins were at the top. I distinctly remember going to my first major track meet, the Pac 10 Conference Championships hosted by Stanford University, to watch the Bruins live in action. I could not wait to see them throw and oddly enough my seats were right in front of Coach Venegas. I listened to every word and every cue he gave his throwers. Although, I was relatively inexperienced, especially having zero knowledge about the rotation, I noticed right away that the Bruins had distinct characteristics in their technique. Little did I know that in the future I would be competing against the Bruins while attending college at Cal State Northridge. Read more

Episode 46: Chasing Excellence (with John Godina)

When I was first starting out as a shot putter, John Godina was THE man in the sport. His technique was smooth as silk and he simply did not lose. After setting the still standing NCAA record, winning four world titles and two Olympic medals, Godina finally hung up his shoes in 2008, but that was not his end in the sport. He since founded Altis, which he now runs as CEO. Altis has grown as a training center with more than 100 elite track and field athletes and a coaching center featuring a growing education program. On this episode of the podcast he joins us to discuss some of the lessons he has learned from his career of chasing excellence in every pursuit. Read more

Episode 42: World Indoors (with Adam Nelson)

This week’s episode Nick and I are together for the first time and recording from the floor of the Oregon Convention Center at the World Indoor Track and Field Championships. We give some feedback on the meet and our observations on coaching during competitions. Then special guest Olympic gold medalist Adam Nelson joins us to give us his thoughts on the competition. Read more

Episode 39: Beast Mode (with Noah Bryant)

Noah Bryant is one of the rare power athletes that achieved success in many sports. In the shot put he was a multiple-time NCAA champion and made Team USA. He has also put up world class numbers in Olympic lifting (210kg clean) and powerlifting (raw 500 pound bench press). He joins the podcast this week to reflect on some lessons learned in his career and how strength needs a strong culture to thrive. Read more

Episode 29: Specific Development

Nick and I talk all the time about the simple exercise classification scheme we have taken from Bondarchuk. We try to focus more energy on the specific developmental exercises (SDEs) where the competition movement and strength training converge. But what do we look for when we choose an “specific strength” exercise from this category? And what are some of our favorites? On this week’s episode we dive into those questions. Read more