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  • Breaking old habits

    I've figured out a habit I need to break, and I'm wondering if anyone else has experience with changing deeply ingrained motion sequences. I've finally figured out that when I throw, I'm pulling the disc and turning at the same time, and that I need to wait until I've turned, and THEN start pulling. I've gotten rid of my run up, and so all I'm doing is reaching back, then throwing. A few weeks ago, I was able to throw several discs straight, and with spin. I've never been able to do both before. The problem is that it's awkward and not consistent. I need to build up new muscle memory to override the old way such that I can throw the right way consistently.

    So, that gets to a difference in opinions. My approach is that I need to go to a field for hours and hours and hours and practice throwing correctly. I need to make it as simple as possible, which would help to build up muscle memory. And doing it over and over and over. It's not exactly a lot of fun. Randy thinks I should learn the 360 approach because it's so different that I'd be starting out with no muscle memory. He figures that in addition, I'd be getting more distance, and it would be more interesting. Personally, I think that's a VERY bad idea. But I'd like to keep an open mind. It looks very difficult, and from what I've read, people indicate that you really shouldn't try it until you have excellent form. Have any of you tried a 360? Any thoughts on whether a beginner (especially one with known issues) should even think about it? When you've tried to break old habits, were you more successful by going back to basics, or did it help to change things up totally? Or do you have other suggestions of ways to break old habits? I've been doing it wrong for over three years, so I know that it won't be easy.

  • #2
    my gut says "no" to the 360, karen... and "yes" to practicing in field... but limit it to no more than one hour to avoid injury.

    i am really excited to hear that you are learning how to spin the disc... snap is where it's at, girl... i've finally developed my first "disc golf callus" on my index finger from snapping and it makes me feel super cool.

    another idea i have for you, karen, is to work with midrange discs before attacking drivers. just because midranges are so much easier to control and, from what i've seen the couple times i've had a chance to golf/work with you, you have an easier time throwing these discs... once you learn to get a midrange out there over 100 feet then start throwing some leopards or sidewinders... just an idea...

    ... mostly, karen, i am happy to hear that you are sticking with this. i admire your determination and i wish you the best of luck!!! go get 'em.

    sorry i didn't actually address your initial question about muscle memory.

    another tip: keep it simple!!! i love that you are no longer doing a run up, that was a smart choice.

    emma
    "'There are two mantras.,' Bernard said, 'Yum and yuk. Mine is yum.'"
    Tom Robbins, Still Life With Woodpecker

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    • #3
      Yep, I've already dropped down to, well, at least to slow fairway drivers. I'm currently throwing beat dx gazelle, cheetah, xl, eagle.

      Thanks for the comment on limiting the practice sessions. Realistically, that's about all the fieldwork I'd probably do at one time anyway. It was just wishful thinking that I could practice for several hours on Saturday (keeping fingers crossed that the weather will actually be sunny, as predicted).

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      • #4
        I totally agree simple is better. I like your approach of taking away the run up until you get the reach back and snap mastered. I would defiantly say going to a field and throwing is a great idea, but don't over do it. Throw for awhile in the field, and then go play a round, or do some putting, or work on some upshots. A varied routine is better, and also more fun. That's why we play this silly game right to have fun.

        One thing I do, and I know a lot of others do as well is take a towel grip it and practice your throwing motion at home to get that nice snap with the towel.

        I hope to see you out there Karen way to stick with it.

        Cindy
        Next Adventure Flight Crew Member
        2013 Chick Flick co-TD
        Stumptown #176
        PDGA #37716

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        • #5
          1080

          I would suggest the 720 or 1080 drive over the 360. You get a lot more distance.
          NOTE: I usually yell fore before I throw the 1080 and most of the time I don't get my disc back.

          In all seriousness, like you've identified, repetition is a key element in being able to reproduce and duplicate shots.

          Although you are not specifically seeking distance advice,
          I think Dion does a pretty good job explaining some key throwing fundamentals in his Discraft Distance Clinic video.

          He addresses the reach-back, pull-through, and acceleration aspects of the throw starting at ~4:55.

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bMC6OYzb3oY

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          • #6
            When I first started to play, I thought you were supposed to throw as hard as you can all the time. This is obviously not good for your form if you eventually get serious. Ive gotten serious and have had to redo my entire routine. I found that getting rid of run-up didn't help much, What I do is take only about 3 steps, and go slow. really Exaggerate how slow you go into your throw and you can feel when you don't pull back or if you are not pulling through. This helped me a lot. the mid-range tip is also a very good point. I picked up a comet, which for me is very understable, and I learned to throw it without flipping it over at all, this helped me to keep everything clean, if you don't throw a comet clean it won't do anything but fall to the ground. Now I feel more confident in my form and fundamentals than I ever have. it doesn't take strength or power, you can move ultra slow into the wind-up to get your body into the correct position to explode and unwind into your throw. I hope this helps, also one more thing, bend those knees when you throw, it helps you to unwind and spin faster. good luck!

            p.s. I would not try the 360. I've thrown a couple discs 300 feet the wrong direction with a 360, and even fallen more times than i'd like to admit while trying it.
            Fear of any kind is the number one enemy of all golfers regardless of ball-striking and shot-making capabilities.

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            • #7
              Just my two cents:

              Think Occam's Razor (or Law of Parsimony): line of reasoning that says the simplest answer is often correct.

              Keep it simple.

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              • #8
                Thanks for all the advice! I finally got out over the weekend to practice. I did end up getting some more discs. I got a slower disc -- a 168gm Star Dart. It seems much more consistent than the Gazelle, but doesn't get quite as much distance as the good Gazelle throws. I also got 4 more "matching Gazelles", so now I have 5 beat DX Gazelles between 168 and 171 gms, all in different colors. It's nice to be able to remember which colors felt like "better throws", and then be able to measure distances.

                I was surprised that everyone was right about not being able to practice as long as I'd have wanted. After several months of being sedentary during the rain, I definitely noticed the exercise. I only threw about 60-70 practice drives before I about had it. I'd say I was reasonably successful at not releasing late (maybe about 10% went off to the right, although some of those were my longest throws!). I'd say that maybe 25% went straight, with some spin. I guess that leaves almost 2/3 that went straight, but needed help. It probably wasn't bad for a first session of the spring, but I'm certainly not ready to play without reinforcing my bad habits. But, at least I'm seeing some improvement. My best straight throw was about 120ft straight, and my best bad throw (released late) was about 150ft. I'm practicing on a baseball diamond, and I'd never thrown into the outfield before, and I had a couple of throws (some of the bad ones) that made it past the baselines! It'll take time, but hopefully I can increase the number of straight throws "with spin". I think I've still got an arm speed issue though, because even though these are very beat DX discs, they're not even thinking about flipping.

                Karen

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                • #9
                  well done, karen!

                  and 60-70 drives is plenty, girl... i was out with my dad on friday and i would say i threw less than that (maybe 50? but i didn't keep track) and that was quitting in the nick of time...

                  keep it up.

                  emma
                  "'There are two mantras.,' Bernard said, 'Yum and yuk. Mine is yum.'"
                  Tom Robbins, Still Life With Woodpecker

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    If you don't mind a male perspective one thing that has help me, and many other...If you buy one of the long resistance bands, punch a hole in a disc, tie the band up. Then tie said band to something at your shoulder level. You can stand, with disc in hand and practice your throw. It will help you develop an level pull through your swing, which is something many people struggle with. Easy to do indoors too, while it's pouring down rain outside!

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                    • #11
                      Hey Karen I have recently had really good results throwing some of the Innova blizzard plastic particularly the 134 katana. I think you should totally give a light weight blizzard katana a try.

                      Hey also you should totally sign up for the Women's Global Event. April 12th is the last day to sign up, and receive a players pack.

                      Cindy
                      Next Adventure Flight Crew Member
                      2013 Chick Flick co-TD
                      Stumptown #176
                      PDGA #37716

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Bruce View Post
                        If you don't mind a male perspective one thing that has help me, and many other...If you buy one of the long resistance bands, punch a hole in a disc, tie the band up. Then tie said band to something at your shoulder level. You can stand, with disc in hand and practice your throw. It will help you develop an level pull through your swing, which is something many people struggle with. Easy to do indoors too, while it's pouring down rain outside!
                        bruce, this is great advice that i believe karen will benefit from immensely. easy way to build your golf muscles, help improve your snap and spin and keep you from pulling any muscles or injuring yourself (which is a real risk during driving practice in a wide open field).

                        emma
                        "'There are two mantras.,' Bernard said, 'Yum and yuk. Mine is yum.'"
                        Tom Robbins, Still Life With Woodpecker

                        Comment

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